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The dispersal ecology of Rhodesian sleeping sickness following its introduction to a new area

The dispersal ecology of Rhodesian sleeping sickness following its introduction to a new area
The dispersal ecology of Rhodesian sleeping sickness following its introduction to a new area
Tsetse-transmitted human and animal trypanosomiasis are constraints to both human and animal health in sub-Saharan Africa, and although these diseases have been known for over a century, there is little recent evidence demonstrating how the parasites circulate in natural hosts and ecosystems. The spread of Rhodesian sleeping sickness (caused by Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense) within Uganda over the past 15 years has been linked to the movement of infected, untreated livestock (the predominant reservoir) from endemic areas. However, despite an understanding of the environmental dependencies of sleeping sickness, little research has focused on the environmental factors controlling transmission establishment or the spatially heterogeneous dispersal of disease following a new introduction. In the current study, an annually stratified case-control study of Rhodesian sleeping sickness cases from Serere District, Uganda was used to allow the temporal assessment of correlations between the spatial distribution of sleeping sickness and landscape factors. Significant relationships were detected between Rhodesian sleeping sickness and selected factors, including elevation and the proportion of land which was “seasonally flooding grassland” or “woodlands and dense savannah.” Temporal trends in these relationships were detected, illustrating the dispersal of Rhodesian sleeping sickness into more ‘suitable’ areas over time, with diminishing dependence on the point of introduction in concurrence with an increasing dependence on environmental and landscape factors. These results provide a novel insight into the ecology of Rhodesian sleeping sickness dispersal and may contribute towards the implementation of evidence-based control measures to prevent its further spread.
1935-2735
2485
Wardrop, Nicola A.
8f3a8171-0727-4375-bc68-10e7d616e176
Fèvre, Eric M.
6a168bf3-21be-42c7-b588-7a6b5bad64e5
Atkinson, P.M
96e96579-56fe-424d-a21c-17b6eed13b0b
Welburn, S.C.
9a3b7980-f8c0-4fbe-b8e6-b59f4b505203
Wardrop, Nicola A.
8f3a8171-0727-4375-bc68-10e7d616e176
Fèvre, Eric M.
6a168bf3-21be-42c7-b588-7a6b5bad64e5
Atkinson, P.M
96e96579-56fe-424d-a21c-17b6eed13b0b
Welburn, S.C.
9a3b7980-f8c0-4fbe-b8e6-b59f4b505203

Wardrop, Nicola A., Fèvre, Eric M., Atkinson, P.M and Welburn, S.C. (2013) The dispersal ecology of Rhodesian sleeping sickness following its introduction to a new area. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 7 (10), 2485. (doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0002485).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Tsetse-transmitted human and animal trypanosomiasis are constraints to both human and animal health in sub-Saharan Africa, and although these diseases have been known for over a century, there is little recent evidence demonstrating how the parasites circulate in natural hosts and ecosystems. The spread of Rhodesian sleeping sickness (caused by Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense) within Uganda over the past 15 years has been linked to the movement of infected, untreated livestock (the predominant reservoir) from endemic areas. However, despite an understanding of the environmental dependencies of sleeping sickness, little research has focused on the environmental factors controlling transmission establishment or the spatially heterogeneous dispersal of disease following a new introduction. In the current study, an annually stratified case-control study of Rhodesian sleeping sickness cases from Serere District, Uganda was used to allow the temporal assessment of correlations between the spatial distribution of sleeping sickness and landscape factors. Significant relationships were detected between Rhodesian sleeping sickness and selected factors, including elevation and the proportion of land which was “seasonally flooding grassland” or “woodlands and dense savannah.” Temporal trends in these relationships were detected, illustrating the dispersal of Rhodesian sleeping sickness into more ‘suitable’ areas over time, with diminishing dependence on the point of introduction in concurrence with an increasing dependence on environmental and landscape factors. These results provide a novel insight into the ecology of Rhodesian sleeping sickness dispersal and may contribute towards the implementation of evidence-based control measures to prevent its further spread.

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Published date: 10 October 2013
Organisations: PHEW – P (Population Health), Population, Health & Wellbeing (PHeW)

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Local EPrints ID: 358813
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/358813
ISSN: 1935-2735
PURE UUID: 699c91bf-1a3d-4243-a26a-bf80e48c97d9
ORCID for P.M Atkinson: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5489-6880

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Date deposited: 14 Oct 2013 13:18
Last modified: 20 Jul 2019 01:20

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Contributors

Author: Eric M. Fèvre
Author: P.M Atkinson ORCID iD
Author: S.C. Welburn

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