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Investigating the persistence of tick-borne pathogens via the R0 model

Harrison, A, Montgomery, W and Bown, K 2011, 'Investigating the persistence of tick-borne pathogens via the R0 model' , Parasitology, 138 (07) , pp. 896-905.

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In the epidemiology of infectious diseases, the basic reproduction number,R0, has a number of important applications, most notably it can be used to predict whether a pathogen is likely to become established, or persist, in a given area. We used the R0 model to investigate the persistence of 3 tick-borne pathogens; Babesia microti, Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato in an Apodemus sylvaticus-Ixodes ricinus system. The persistence of these pathogens was also determined empirically by screening questing ticks and wood mice by PCR. All 3 pathogens behaved differently in response to changes in the proportion of transmission hosts on which I. ricinus fed, the efficiency of transmission between the host and ticks and the abundance of larval and nymphal ticks found on small mammals. Empirical data supported theoretical predictions of the R0 model. The transmission pathway employed and the duration of systemic infection were also identified as important factors responsible for establishment or persistence of tick-borne pathogens in a given tick-host system. The current study demonstrates how the R0 model can be put to practical use to investigate factors affecting tick-borne pathogen persistence, which has important implications for animal and human health worldwide.

Item Type: Article
Themes: Subjects outside of the University Themes
Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Science & Technology > School of Environment and Life Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: Parasitology
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0031-1820
Depositing User: Users 29196 not found.
Date Deposited: 22 Dec 2011 15:03
Last Modified: 03 Jun 2014 08:26

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