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Global expansion and redistribution of Aedes- borne virus transmission risk with climate change

The established scientific consensus indicates that climate change will severely exacerbate the risk and burden of Aedes-transmitted viruses, including dengue, chikungunya, Zika, and other significant threats to global health security. Here, we show more subtle impacts of climate change on transmission, caused primarily by differences between the more heat-tolerant Aedes aegypti and the more heat-limited Ae. albopictus. Within the next cen- tury, nearly a billion people could face their first exposure to viral transmission from either mosquito in the worst-case scenario, mainly in Europe and high-elevation tropical and subtropical regions. However, while year-round transmission potential from Ae. aegypti is likely to expand (particularly in south Asia and sub-Saharan Africa), Ae. albopic- tus transmission potential is likely to decline substantially in the tropics, marking a global shift towards seasonal risk as the tropics eventually become too hot for transmission by Ae. albopictus. Complete mitigation of climate change to a pre-industrial baseline may protect almost a billion people from arbovirus range expansions; however, middle-of-the- road mitigation could produce the greatest expansion in the potential for viral transmis- sion by Ae. albopictus. In any scenario, mitigating climate change would shift the pro- jected burden of both dengue and chikungunya (and potentially other Aedes transmitted viruses) from higher-income regions back onto the tropics, where transmission might otherwise begin to decline due to rising temperatures.

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Additional Info

Field Value
Document type Reports, journal articles, and research papers (including theses and dissertations)
Language of document
  • English
  • Climate change
  • Public health
Geographic area (spatial range)
  • Global
Copyright Yes
Access and use constraints

Copyright: © 2019 Ryan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Version / Edition n/a
License Creative Commons Attribution

Sadie J. Ryan:

Author (individual) Ryan SJ, Carlson CJ, Mordecai EA, Johnson LR
Publisher PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Publication date 2019
Keywords vector-borne,transmission,dengue
Date uploaded December 16, 2019, 12:15 (UTC)
Date modified January 6, 2020, 08:28 (UTC)