|Samy, A; Alkishe, AA; Thomas, S M; Wang, L; Zhang, W: Mapping the potential distributions of etiological agent, vectors, and reservoirs of Japanese Encephalitis in Asia and Australia, Acta Tropica, 188, 108-117 (2018), online: 2018-08-15, doi:10.1016/j.actatropica.2018.08.014 [Link]|
Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) is a substantial cause of viral encephalitis, morbidity, and mortality in South- East Asia and the Western Pacific. World Health Organization recognized Japanese Encephalitis (JE) as a public health priority in demands to initiate active vaccination programs. Recently, the geographic distribution of JEV has apparently expanded into other areas in the Pacific islands and northern Australia; however, major gaps exist in knowledge in regard to its current distribution. Here, we mapped the potential distribution of mosquito vectors of JEV (Culex tritaeniorhynchus, Cx. pseudovishnui, Cx. vishnui, Cx. fuscocephala, Cx. gelidus), and reservoirs (Egretta garzetta, E. intermedia, Nycticorax nycticorax) based on ecological niche modeling approach. Ecological niche models predicted all species to occur across Central, South and South East Asia; however, Cx. tritaeniorhynchus, E. garzetta, E. intermedia, and N. nycticorax had broader potential distributions extending west to parts of the Arabian Peninsula. All predictions were robust and significantly better than random (P < 0.001). We also tested the JEV prediction based on 4335 additional independent human case records collected by the Chinese Information System for Disease Control and Prevention (CISDCP); 4075 cases were successfully predicted by the model (P < 0.001). Finally, we tested the ecological niche similarity among JEV, vector, and reservoir species and could not reject any of the null hypotheses of niche similarity in all combination pairs.
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