Journal article

The impact of climate and antigenic evolution on seasonal influenza virus epidemics in Australia

Edward KS Lam, Dylan H Morris, Aeron C Hurt, Ian G Barr, Colin A Russell

NATURE COMMUNICATIONS | NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP | Published : 2020

Abstract

Although seasonal influenza viruses circulate globally, prevention and treatment occur at the level of regions, cities, and communities. At these scales, the timing, duration and magnitude of epidemics vary substantially, but the underlying causes of this variation are poorly understood. Here, based on analyses of a 15-year city-level dataset of 18,250 laboratory-confirmed and antigenically-characterised influenza virus infections from Australia, we investigate the effects of previously hypothesised environmental and virological drivers of influenza epidemics. We find that anomalous fluctuations in temperature and humidity do not predict local epidemic onset timings. We also find that virus ..

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