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Geographical drivers and climate-linked dynamics of Lassa fever in Nigeria

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Title: Geographical drivers and climate-linked dynamics of Lassa fever in Nigeria
Authors: Redding, DW
Gibb, R
Dan-Nwafor, CC
Ilori, EA
Usman, YR
Saliu, OH
Michael, AO
Akanimo, I
Attfield, LA
Donnelly, C
Abubakar, I
Jones, KE
Ihekweazu, C
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Lassa fever is a longstanding public health concern in West Africa. Recent molecular studies have confirmed the fundamental role of the rodent host (Mastomys natalensis) in driving human infections, but control and prevention efforts remain hampered by a limited baseline understanding of the disease’s true incidence, geographical distribution and underlying drivers. Here, we show that Lassa fever occurrence and incidence is influenced by climate, poverty, agriculture and urbanisation factors. However, heterogeneous reporting processes and diagnostic laboratory access also appear to be important drivers of the patchy distribution of observed disease incidence. Using spatiotemporal predictive models we show that including climatic variability added retrospective predictive value over a baseline model (11% decrease in out-of-sample predictive error). However, predictions for 2020 show that a climate-driven model performs similarly overall to the baseline model. Overall, with ongoing improvements in surveillance there may be potential for forecasting Lassa fever incidence to inform health planning.
Issue Date: 1-Oct-2021
Date of Acceptance: 8-Sep-2021
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/91675
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-021-25910-y
ISSN: 2041-1723
Publisher: Nature Research
Start Page: 1
End Page: 10
Journal / Book Title: Nature Communications
Volume: 12
Issue: 5759
Copyright Statement: © The Author(s) 2021. Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Sponsor/Funder: Medical Research Council (MRC)
National Institute for Health Research
Funder's Grant Number: MR/R015600/1
Publication Status: Published
Online Publication Date: 2021-10-01
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Medicine
School of Public Health