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Predictive risk mapping of West Nile virus (WNV) infection in Saskatchewan horses.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Canadian journal of veterinary research = Revue canadienne de recherche vétérinaire
Publication Date
Volume
75
Issue
3
Pages
161–170
Identifiers
PMID: 22210991
Source
Medline

Abstract

The objective of this study was to develop a model using equine data from geographically limited surveillance locations to predict risk categories for West Nile virus (WNV) infection in horses in all geographic locations across the province of Saskatchewan. The province was divided geographically into low-, medium-, or high-risk categories for WNV, based on available serology information from 923 horses obtained through 4 studies of WNV infection in horse populations in Saskatchewan. Discriminant analysis was used to build models using the observed risk of WNV in horses and geographic division-specific environmental data as well as to predict the risk category for all areas, including those beyond the surveillance zones. High-risk areas were indicated by relatively lower rainfall, higher temperatures, and a lower percentage of area covered in trees, water, and wetland. These conditions were most often identified in the southwest corner of the province. Environmental conditions can be used to identify those areas that are at highest risk for WNV. Public health managers could use prediction maps, which are based on animal or human information and developed from annual early season meteorological information, to guide ongoing decisions about when and where to focus intervention strategies for WNV.

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