Deciphering arboviral emergence within insular ecosystems

Tortosa, Pablo, Pascalis, Hervé, Guernier, Vanina, Cardinale, Eric, Le Corre, Matthieu, Goodman, Steven M., and Dellagi, Koussay (2012) Deciphering arboviral emergence within insular ecosystems. Infection, Genetics and Evolution, 12 (6). pp. 1333-1339.

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The spatial dynamics of zoonotic arthropod-borne viruses is a fashionable though challenging topic. Inter-human local transmission of a given arbovirus during an outbreak and its spread over large distances are considered as key parameters of emergence. Here, we suggest that insular ecosystems provide ideal natural "laboratory" conditions to uncouple local transmission from long distance spread, and differentiate these two processes. Due to geographic isolation, often-limited land surface area and relatively homogenous ecosystems, oceanic islands display low species richness and often-high levels of endemism. These aspects provide the means for comprehensive entomological surveys and investigations of original host/pathogen interactions. In addition, islands are interconnected through discrete anthropogenic and non-anthropogenic exchanges: whilst islands maintain a substantial level of human and domestic animal exchange with other neighbouring or distant territories, they also comprise dispersal and migratory pathways of volant organisms (insects, birds and bats). Hence, both anthropogenic and non-anthropogenic exchanges in island systems are easier to identify and investigate than in continuous, continental systems. Finally, island ecosystems tend to be notably simpler, more prone to invasive taxa and, therefore, easier to document the colonization or displacement of vector species. These different aspects are presented and overlaid upon the spread of arboviruses within two distinct insular systems: islands of Polynesia and the south-western Indian Ocean. The former have been repeatedly affected by Dengue fever epidemics, while the latter recently suffered four successive epidemics, probably of east African origin, three of which involved the emerging viruses Chikungunya, Rift Valley and Dengue fever. Here, we review some new insights into arboviral spread and evolution associated with investigations that followed these epidemics, as well as several aspects that make insular ecosystems favourable to the investigation of arboviral transmission and spread.

Item ID: 44715
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1567-7257
Keywords: arbovirus dynamics; island phylogeography; microbial endemism; evolution
Funders: FEDER Réunion (FR), Faune Sauvage Océan Indien (FSOI), European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7)
Projects and Grants: FR Programme Opérationnel de Coopération Territoriale, FSOI #31189, FP7 Capacity RegPot Run-Emerge
Date Deposited: 02 Aug 2016 00:53
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0605 Microbiology > 060506 Virology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9604 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species > 960405 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species at Regional or Larger Scales @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9201 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) > 920109 Infectious Diseases @ 50%
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