Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Rabies Spread Speeds Up

Date:
March 8, 2005
Source:
Public Library Of Science
Summary:
In a new study reported in the freely-available online journal PLoS Biology, Real and colleagues apply a mathematical model to predict the likely spread of rabies across Ohio - a potential gateway for spread throughout the Midwest - and find that raccoon rabies could spread throughout the state in just three years, far faster than previously thought.

Predicting the spread of raccoon rabies across Ohio.
Credit: Photo : Leslie Real, et al.

Though most rabies fatalities in the United States stem from bat bites, far more people are treated for raccoon rabies. In 1990, raccoons topped the list of most often reported rabid mammal. Controlling the spread of rabies depends on predicting the spatial dynamics of the disease - where new outbreaks might occur and how the virus might spread. In a new study reported in the freely-available online journal PLoS Biology, Real and colleagues apply a mathematical model to predict the likely spread of rabies across Ohio - a potential gateway for spread throughout the Midwest - and find that raccoon rabies could spread throughout the state in just three years, far faster than previously thought.

Related Articles


One strategy for limiting rabies spread is to establish vaccine corridors by distributing vaccine baits - vaccine doses hidden in fishmeal - to wild raccoons. This cordon sanitaire strategy limited rabies in Ohio to sporadic cases from 1997 until 2004, when a single rabid animal was detected - 11 kilometers beyond the buffer zone - in northeastern Ohio. By modelling the spread of past outbreaks, the authors had already shown that local transmission was significantly reduced when townships were separated by geographical barriers. The authors incorporated the likely effect of Ohio's five major rivers on transmission from local points along the Pennsylvania or West Virginia border but also adjusted their model to estimate the potential impact of long distant translocations, such as the occasional garbage truck ride. They estimated that rabies would take just 33 months to spread across central Ohio - compared to 48 months to cross the much smaller state of Connecticut - and cover the state within 41 months. This transmission rate - 100 kilometers/year - significantly surpasses previous estimates, which range from 30 to 60 kilometers/year. The potential for such rapid spread, if unchecked, "is quite alarming," the authors warn.

Given the unpredictable nature of rabies transmission - challenging efforts to identify potential leaks in vaccine corridors and sites of dispersal - the authors' simulations provide a valuable resource for anticipating alternate outbreak scenarios and preparing multiple game plans to prevent or contain them. They also indicate the best sites for establishing a new vaccine barrier. And given how fast raccoon rabies could spread, Real and colleagues make a strong case that halting its western march depends on a strategy based on early detection and high-powered intervention programs - a sensible approach for any infectious disease.

###

Citation: Russell CA, Smith DL, Childs JE, Real LA (2005) Predictive spatial dynamics and strategic planning for raccoon rabies emergence in Ohio. PLoS Biol 3(3): e88.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library Of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Public Library Of Science. "Rabies Spread Speeds Up." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 March 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/03/050307221347.htm>.
Public Library Of Science. (2005, March 8). Rabies Spread Speeds Up. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/03/050307221347.htm
Public Library Of Science. "Rabies Spread Speeds Up." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/03/050307221347.htm (accessed November 28, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Friday, November 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Research on Bats Could Help Develop Drugs Against Ebola

Research on Bats Could Help Develop Drugs Against Ebola

AFP (Nov. 28, 2014) In Africa's only biosafety level 4 laboratory, scientists have been carrying out experiments on bats to understand how virus like Ebola are being transmitted, and how some of them resist to it. Duration: 01:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Dinosaur Species Found in Museum Collection

New Dinosaur Species Found in Museum Collection

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 27, 2014) A British palaeontologist has discovered a new species of dinosaur while studying fossils in a Canadian museum. Pentaceratops aquilonius was related to Triceratops and lived at the end of the Cretaceous Period, around 75 million years ago. Jim Drury has more. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tryptophan Isn't Making You Sleepy On Thanksgiving

Tryptophan Isn't Making You Sleepy On Thanksgiving

Newsy (Nov. 27, 2014) Tryptophan, a chemical found naturally in turkey meat, gets blamed for sleepiness after Thanksgiving meals. But science points to other culprits. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Classic Hollywood Memorabilia Goes Under the Hammer

Classic Hollywood Memorabilia Goes Under the Hammer

Reuters - Entertainment Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) The iconic piano from "Casablanca" and the Cowardly Lion suit from "The Wizard of Oz" fetch millions at auction. Sara Hemrajani reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins