Sea surface temperature anomalies can predict global dengue trends: study

A team of Chinese scientists has discovered that sea surface temperature anomalies in the tropical Indian Ocean can predict the magnitude of global dengue epidemics.

The study published in the journal Science suggested that the climate indicator could enhance the forecasting and planning for outbreak responses.

Dengue is a mosquito-borne flavivirus disease that affects nearly half the world’s population. /CFP

Dengue is a mosquito-borne flavivirus disease that affects nearly half the world’s population. /CFP

Dengue is a mosquito-borne flavivirus disease that affects nearly half the world’s population. Climate events like El Nino are known to influence the dynamics of dengue transmission globally by affecting mosquito breeding.

Using climate-driven mechanistic models and data on dengue cases reported from 46 countries in Southeast Asia and America, the researchers from Beijing Normal University identified associations between global climate patterns and the seasonal and interannual magnitude of dengue epidemics in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.

The study by a team of Chinese scientists indicates sea surface temperature anomalies in the tropical Indian Ocean can predict the magnitude of global dengue epidemics. /CFP

The study by a team of Chinese scientists indicates sea surface temperature anomalies in the tropical Indian Ocean can predict the magnitude of global dengue epidemics. /CFP

The study revealed that the model has the ability to make dengue warnings with a significant lead time of up to nine months, which is a substantial improvement over the previous models that could only provide warnings three months in advance.

The findings could allow for more effective planning for outbreak response, but further assessments are needed to evaluate the predictive performance of the model, said Tian Huaiyu from the university, the corresponding author of the paper.

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency