Vector-borne epidemics driven by human mobility

Soriano-Paños,David;Arias-Castro,Judy Heliana;Reyna-Lara,Adriana;Martínez,Hector J.;Meloni,Sandro;Gómez-Gardeñes,Jesús;
Physical Review Research 2, 013312 (1-12) (2020)

Vector-borne epidemics are progressively becoming a global burden, especially those related to flaviviruses, and the effects of different factors such as climate change or the increase of human mobility can sensibly increase the population at risk worldwide. Such outbreaks are the result of the combination of different factors including crossed contagions between humans and vectors, their demographic distribution and human mobility among others. The current availability of information about all those ingredients demands their incorporation into current mathematical models for vector-borne disease transmission. Here, relying on a Markovian formulation of the metapopulation dynamics, we propose a framework that explicitly includes human-vector interactions, mobility, and demography. The analysis of the framework allows us not only to derive an expression of the epidemic threshold capturing the conditions for the onset of the epidemics but also to highlight some unseen features of vector-borne epidemics, such as abrupt changes in the unfolding patterns of the disease for small variations of the degree of mobility. Finally, driven by these insights, we obtain a prevalence indicator to rank populations according to their risk of being affected by a vector-borne disease. We illustrate the utility of this indicator by reproducing the spatial distribution Dengue cases reported in the city of Santiago de Cali (Colombia) from 2015 to 2016.

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