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Estimating past, present and future trends in the global distribution and abundance of the arbovirus vector Aedes aegypti
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Epidemiology and Global Health.
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics. Evolution and Ecology Program, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Laxenburg, Austria.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Section of Sustainable Health.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Section of Sustainable Health.
2019 (English)In: Frontiers In Public Health, ISSN 2296-2565, Vol. 7, article id 148Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Aedes aegypti is the principal vector for several important arbovirus diseases, including dengue, chikungunya, yellow fever, and Zika. While recent empirical research has attempted to identify the current global distribution of the vector, the seasonal, and longer-term dynamics of the mosquito in response to trends in climate, population, and economic development over the twentieth and the twenty-first century remains to be elucidated.

Methods: In this study, we use a process-based mathematical model to estimate global vector distribution and abundance. The model is based on the lifecycle of the vector and its dependence on climate, and the model sensitivity to socio-economic development is tested. Model parameters were generally empirically based, and the model was calibrated to global databases and time series of occurrence and abundance records. Climate data on temperature and rainfall were taken from CRU TS3.25 (1901–2015) and five global circulation models (CMIP5; 2006–2099) forced by a high-end (RCP8.5) and a low-end (RCP2.6) emission scenario. Socio-economic data on global GDP and human population density were from ISIMIP (1950–2099).

Findings: The change in the potential of global abundance in A. aegypti over the last century up to today is estimated to be an increase of 9.5% globally and a further increase of 20 or 30% by the end of this century under a low compared to a high carbon emission future, respectively. The largest increase has occurred in the last two decades, indicating a tipping point in climate-driven global abundance which will be stabilized at the earliest in the mid-twenty-first century. The realized abundance is estimated to be sensitive to socioeconomic development.

Interpretation: Our data indicate that climate change mitigation, i.e., following the Paris Agreement, could considerably help in suppressing risks of increased abundance and emergence of A. aegypti globally in the second half of the twenty-first century.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Frontiers Media S.A., 2019. Vol. 7, article id 148
Keywords [en]
Aedes aegypti, mathematical model, vector abundance, temperature, precipitation, climate change, socioeconomic factors, global vector abundance
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-143762DOI: 10.3389/fpubh.2019.00148ISI: 000472667800001PubMedID: 31249824OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-143762DiVA, id: diva2:1172042
Funder
EU, Horizon 2020, 734584Swedish Research Council, 2015-03917Swedish Research Council Formas, 2017-01300
Note

Originally included in thesis in manuscript form.

Available from: 2018-01-09 Created: 2018-01-09 Last updated: 2019-07-22Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Climate Change, Dengue and Aedes Mosquitoes: Past Trends and Future Scenarios
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Climate Change, Dengue and Aedes Mosquitoes: Past Trends and Future Scenarios
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Background Climate change, global travel and trade have facilitated the spread of Aedes mosquitoes and have consequently enabled the diseases they transmit (dengue fever, Chikungunya, Zika and yellow fever) to emerge and re-emerge in uninfected areas. Large dengue outbreaks occurred in Athens in 1927 and in Portuguese island, Madeira in 2012, but there are almost no recent reports of Aedes aegypti, the principal vector, in Europe. A dengue outbreak needs four conditions: sufficient susceptible humans, abundant Aedes vector, dengue virus introduction, and conducive climate. Can Aedes aegypti establish themselves again in Europe in the near future if they are introduced? How do the current and future climate affect dengue transmission globally, and regionally as in Europe? This thesis tries to answer these questions.

Methods Two process-based mathematical models were developed in this thesis. Model 1 describes a vector’s ability to transmit dengue – vectorial capacity – based on temperature and diurnal temperature range (DTR). Model 2 describes vector population dynamics based on the lifecycle of Aedes aegypti. From this model, vector abundance was estimated using both climate as a single driver, and climate together with human population and GDP as multiple drivers; vector population growth rate was derived as a threshold condition to estimate the vector’s invasion to a new place.

Results Using vectorial capacity, we estimate dengue epidemic potential globally for Aedes aegypti and in Europe for Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. We show that mean temperature and DTR are both important in modelling dengue transmission, especially in a temperate climate zone like Europe. Currently, South Europe is over the threshold for dengue epidemics if sufficient dengue vectors are present. Aedes aegypti is on the borderline of invasion into the southern tip of Europe. However, by end of this century, the invasion of Aedes aegypti may reach as far north as the middle of Europe under the business-as-usual climate scenario. Or it may be restricted to the south Europe from the middle of the century if the low carbon emission – Paris Agreement – is implemented to limit global warming to below 2°C.

Conclusion Climate change will increase the area and time window for Aedes aegypti’s invasion and consequently the dengue epidemic potential globally, and in Europe in particular. Successfully achieving the Paris Agreement would considerably change the future risk scenario of a highly competent vector – Aedes aegypti’s – invasion into Europe. Therefore, the risk of transmission of dengue and other infectious diseases to the mainland of Europe depends largely on human efforts to mitigate climate change.

Abstract [sv]

Bakgrund Klimatförändringar tillsammans med en ökad frekvens av globala resor och handel har gynnat spridningen av Aedes-myggor och möjliggjort att de sjukdomar som de överför (dengue feber, Chikungunya, Zika och gul feber) etablerar sig i tidigare oinfekterade områden. Det två största utbrotten av dengue i Europa inträffade i Aten 1927 och på den portugisiska ön Madeira 2012 orsakades av Aedes aegypti, men i de allra flesta delar i Europa finns inga rapporter om Aedes aegypti. Ett utbrott av dengue kräver att fyra villkor uppfylls: tillräckligt mottagliga människor, rikligt med Aedes-vektorer, introduktion av dengue-virus, och ett gynnsamt klimat. En stor fråga idag är om Aedes aegypti kan etableras igen i Europa i ett förändrat klimat, och hur nuvarande och framtida klimatförhållanden möjligör dengue smittspridning globalt och regionalt i Europa. Denna avhandling försöker svara på dessa frågor.

Metoder Två processbaserade matematiska modeller utvecklades i arbetet med denna avhandling. En av modellerna beskriver vektorns förmåga att överföra dengue – vektorkapaciteten – baserat på temperatur och dyngstemperaturens varation (DTR). Den andra modellen beskriver vektorpopulationens dynamik baserat på myggans livscykel. Myggornas populationsdynamik och populationstäthet uppskattades med en modell baserat på enbart klimat, samt en modell baserat på klimat, mänsklig befolkning och BNP. Vektorgruppens tillväxthastighet härleddes som ett tröskelvärde för att uppskatta vektorernas invasionsbenägenhet till nya områden i takt med att klimatet förändras.

Resultat Med hjälp av vektorkapacitetmodellen uppskattade vi den epidemiska potentialen av dengue smittad av Aedes aegypti globalt och i Europa av Aedes aegypti och Aedes albopictus. Vi visar att den genomsnittliga temperaturen och DTR båda är viktiga för dengue myggornas kapacitet att starta epidemier, särskilt i tempererade klimatzoner, så som Europa. För närvarande är Syd-Europa tillräckligt gynnsamt för dengueepidemier vissa tider på året om myggpopulationerna är tillräckligt stora. Vi visat att Aedes aegypti möjligen kan etablera sig längs Europas södra utkanter idag. I slutet av detta århundrade kan invasionen av Aedes aegypti nå så långt norrut till mitten av Europa om vi inte begränsar klimatutsläppen mer än vad vi gör idag. Om vi följer klimatavtalet från Paris 2015 där den globala uppvärmningen begränsar till under 2 grader kan invasionen troligtvis förhindras, eller i vilket fall kraftigt begränsas i Europa.

Slutsats Ett varmare klimat kommer att öka antalet geografiska områdena i Europa som är gynnsamt för Aedes aegypti. Det kommer även öka tidsfönstret för vektorernas epidemiska potential globalt, och i synnerhet för Europa. En framgångsrik implementering av klimatavtalet från 2015, som riktar sig mot att begränsa uppvärmingen till under 2 grader, skulle väsentligt minska risken för en framtida invasion av dengue, zika och chikungunya i Europa. Därför beror risken för dengueöverföring och andra infektionssjukdomar i södra Europa till stor del på mänskliga ansträngningar för att med utsläppsminskningar av växthusgaser kontrollera klimatförändringen.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå universitet, 2018. p. 100
Series
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 1931
Keywords
dengue, mathematical modelling, vectorial capacity, DTR, Aedes aegypti, Aedes albopictus, climate change, Europe, vector invasion, abundance, dengue, matematisk modellering, vektorkapacitet, DTR, Aedes aegypti, Aedes albopictus, klimatförändring, Europa, vektor invasion
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Epidemiology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-143764 (URN)978-91-7601-798-2 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-02-02, Hörsal D, Tandläkarhögskolan, By1D, 9 tr, Norrlands universitetssjukhus, Umeå, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-01-12 Created: 2018-01-09 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved

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