Time Can Be Telling

New research pinpoints a correlation between clearance of fruit-bat favored forests and the timing of outbreaks—information useful in predicting areas at high risk for zoonotic diseases like Ebola.

“Statistically we found a very strong link between forest loss two years before an outbreak occurring,” said John Emmanuel Fa, a Manchester Metropolitan University professor involved in the research, published today in Nature’s online Scientific Reports. The researchers observed forest cover throughout the Congo basin using satellite imaging.

Getting specific on the timeline gives early warning systems a valuable detail—and can help rally resources to protect vulnerable hotspots.

The Guardian

Related: Nonedemic regions in Africa at high risk for viral hemorrhagic fever outbreaks – Healio

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