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R E V I E W : E C O L O G Y Climate Warming and Disease Risks for
 

Summary: R E V I E W : E C O L O G Y
Climate Warming and Disease Risks for
Terrestrial and Marine Biota
C. Drew Harvell,1
* Charles E. Mitchell,1,2
Jessica R. Ward,1
Sonia Altizer,3,4
Andrew P. Dobson,5
Richard S. Ostfeld,6
Michael D. Samuel7
Infectious diseases can cause rapid population declines or species extinctions. Many
pathogens of terrestrial and marine taxa are sensitive to temperature, rainfall, and
humidity, creating synergisms that could affect biodiversity. Climate warming can
increase pathogen development and survival rates, disease transmission, and host
susceptibility. Although most host-parasite systems are predicted to experience more
frequent or severe disease impacts with warming, a subset of pathogens might decline
with warming, releasing hosts from disease. Recently, changes in El Nin~o­Southern
Oscillation events have had a detectable influence on marine and terrestrial patho-
gens, including coral diseases, oyster pathogens, crop pathogens, Rift Valley fever, and
human cholera. To improve our ability to predict epidemics in wild populations, it will

  

Source: Altizer, Sonia M.- Institute of Ecology, University of Georgia
Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Millbrook, New York
Mitchell, Charles - Department of Biology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine; Environmental Sciences and Ecology