Climatic and socio-economic factors supporting the co-circulation of dengue, Zika and chikungunya in three different ecosystems in Colombia

Jasmine Morgan, Clare Strode*, J. Enrique Salcedo-Sora*, Rebecca C. Christofferson (Editor)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)
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Dengue, Zika and chikungunya are diseases of global health significance caused by arboviruses and transmitted by the mosquito Aedes aegypti, which is of worldwide circulation. The arrival of the Zika and chikungunya viruses to South America increased the complexity of transmission and morbidity caused by these viruses co-circulating in the same vector mosquito species. Here we present an integrated analysis of the reported arbovirus cases between 2007 and 2017 and local climate and socio-economic profiles of three distinct Colombian municipalities (Bello, Cúcuta and Moniquirá). These locations were confirmed as three different ecosystems given their contrasted geographic, climatic and socio-economic profiles. Correlational analyses were conducted with both generalised linear models and generalised additive models for the geographical data. Average temperature, minimum temperature and wind speed were strongly correlated with disease incidence. The transmission of Zika during the 2016 epidemic appeared to decrease circulation of dengue in Cúcuta, an area of sustained high incidence of dengue. Socio-economic factors such as barriers to health and childhood services, inadequate sanitation and poor water supply suggested an unfavourable impact on the transmission of dengue, Zika and chikungunya in all three ecosystems. Socio-demographic influencers were also discussed including the influx of people to Cúcuta, fleeing political and economic instability from neighbouring Venezuela. Aedes aegypti is expanding its range and increasing the global threat of these diseases. It is therefore vital that we learn from the epidemiology of these arboviruses and translate it into an actionable local knowledge base. This is even more acute given the recent historical high of dengue cases in the Americas in 2019, preceding the COVID-19 pandemic, which is itself hampering mosquito control efforts.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e0009259
JournalPLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Issue number3
Early online date11 Mar 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 11 Mar 2021


  • Research Article
  • Medicine and health sciences
  • People and places
  • Earth sciences
  • Biology and life sciences


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