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Incubation periods impact the spatial predictability of cholera and Ebola outbreaks in Sierra Leone
Rebecca Kahn | Corey M. Peak | Juan Fernández-Gracia | Alexandra Hill | Amara Jambai | Louisa Ganda | Marcia C. Castro | Caroline O. Buckee
Date of Publication:
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Forecasting the spatiotemporal spread of infectious diseases during an outbreak is an important component of epidemic response. However, it remains challenging both methodologically and with respect to data requirements, as disease spread is influenced by numerous factors, including the pathogen's underlying transmission parameters and epidemiological dynamics, social networks and population connectivity, and environmental conditions. Here, using data from Sierra Leone, we analyze the spatiotemporal dynamics of recent cholera and Ebola outbreaks and compare and contrast the spread of these two pathogens in the same population. We develop a simulation model of the spatial spread of an epidemic in order to examine the impact of a pathogen's incubation period on the dynamics of spread and the predictability of outbreaks. We find that differences in the incubation period alone can determine the limits of predictability for diseases with different natural history, both empirically and in our simulations. Our results show that diseases with longer incubation periods, such as Ebola, where infected individuals can travel farther before becoming infectious, result in more long-distance sparking events and less predictable disease trajectories, as compared to the more predictable wave-like spread of diseases with shorter incubation periods, such as cholera.
Impact of oral cholera vaccines in cholera-endemic countries: A mathematical modeling study
Jong-Hoon Kim | Vittal Mogasale | Colleen Burgess | Thomas F. Wierzba
Date of Publication:
Impact evaluation of vaccination programs is necessary for making decisions to introduce oral cholera vaccines (OCVs) in cholera-endemic countries.
We analyzed data to forecast the future global burden of cholera. We developed a mathematical model of cholera transmission in three countries as examples: Nigeria, Uganda, and Indonesia. After fitting the model, we evaluated the impact of OCVs delivered in four vaccination strategies varying by target age group and frequency of vaccination over the period of 2015-2030.
Data suggest that the global annual incidence of cholera will increase from 3046238 in 2015 to 3787385 in 2030 with the highest burden in Asia and Africa where overall population size is large and the proportion of population with access to improved sanitation facilities is low. We estimate that OCV will reduce the cumulative incidence of cholera by half in Indonesia and >80% in Nigeria and Uganda when delivered to 1+ year olds every three years at a coverage rate of 50%, although cholera may persist through higher coverage rates (i.e., >90%). The proportion of person-to-person transmission compared to water-to-person transmission is positively correlated with higher vaccination impact in all three countries.
Periodic OCV vaccination every three or five years can significantly reduce the global burden of cholera although cholera may persist even with high OCV coverage. Vaccination impact will likely vary depending on local epidemiological conditions including age distribution of cases and relative contribution of different transmission routes.