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Forskningsartikel - Refereegranskat, 2014

Shaping zoonosis risk: landscape ecology vs. landscape attractiveness for people, the case of tick-borne encephalitis in Sweden

Zeimes, Caroline B.; Olsson, Gert; Hjertqvist, Marika; Vanwambeke, Sophie O.


Background: In this paper, the hazard and exposure concepts from risk assessment are applied in an innovative approach to understand zoonotic disease risk. Hazard is here related to the landscape ecology determining where the hosts, vectors and pathogens are and, exposure is defined as the attractiveness and accessibility to hazardous areas. Tick-borne encephalitis in Sweden was used as a case study.Methods: Three boosted regression tree models are compared: a hazard model, an exposure model and a global model which combines the two approaches.Results: The global model offers the best predictive power and the most accurate modelling. The highest probabilities were found in easy-to-reach places with high landscape diversity, holiday houses, waterbodies and, well-connected forests of oak, birch or pine, with open-area in their ecotones, a complex shape, numerous clear-cuts and, a variation in tree height.Conclusion: While conditions for access and use of hazardous areas are quite specific to Scandinavia, this study offers promising perspectives to improve our understanding of the distribution of zoonotic and vector-borne diseases in diverse contexts.


Tick-borne disease; Zoonoses; Vector-borne disease; Risk

Publicerad i

Parasites and Vectors
2014, Volym: 7, artikelnummer: 370

    UKÄ forskningsämne

    Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology

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