Impact of Environmental and Social Factors on Ross River Virus Outbreaks

Craig R. Williams, David O. Harley

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Ross River virus (RRV) is primarily a zoonosis, with the virus maintained in reservoir hosts, mostly thought to be marsupial mammals, particularly macropodids. Characterization of varied "virus ecologies" has been done in order to develop management strategies that can be used to predict and manage RRV disease. The most distal determinant for infection (climatic and other environmental variables) influences risk both via intermediates and directly. The next two proximal determinants (vertebrate reservoir hosts and mosquito vectors) determine infection risk via those determinants proximal to them. Climate change is a major threat to human health, particularly because of its potential to influence the incidence of infectious diseases. The many attempts to develop a better understanding of RRV ecology and epidemiology have led to the identification of above-average rainfall, together with high mosquito abundance, as powerful predictors for outbreaks in humans.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationViral Infections and Global Change
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781118297469
ISBN (Print)9781118297872
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 18 Oct 2013


  • Climate change
  • Environmental factors
  • Ross river virus (RRV)
  • Social determinants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)

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