Patterns, Drivers, and Challenges of Vector-Borne Disease Emergence

Andrea Swei, Lisa I. Couper, Lark L. Coffey, Durrell Kapan, Shannon Bennett

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Vector-borne diseases are emerging at an increasing rate and comprise a disproportionate share of all emerging infectious diseases. Yet, the key ecological and evolutionary dimensions of vector-borne disease that facilitate their emergence have not been thoroughly explored. This study reviews and synthesizes the existing literature to explore global patterns of emerging vector-borne zoonotic diseases (VBZDs) under changing global conditions. We find that the vast majority of emerging VBZDs are transmitted by ticks (Ixodidae) and mosquitoes (Culicidae) and the pathogens transmitted are dominated by Rickettsiaceae bacteria and RNA viruses (Flaviviridae, Bunyaviridae, and Togaviridae). The most common potential driver of these emerging zoonoses is land use change, but for many diseases, the driver is unknown, revealing a critical research gap. While most reported VBZDs are emerging in the northern latitudes, after correcting for sampling bias, Africa is clearly a region with the greatest share of emerging VBZD. We highlight critical gaps in our understanding of VBZD emergence and emphasize the importance of interdisciplinary research and consideration of deeper evolutionary processes to improve our capacity for anticipating where and how such diseases have and will continue to emerge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)159-170
Number of pages12
JournalVector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2020

Keywords

  • global change
  • infectious disease
  • mosquito
  • tick
  • vector-borne
  • zoonotic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology

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