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Changing Transmission Pattern of Plasmodium vivax Malaria in the Republic of Korea: Relationship with Climate Change

By Jae-Won Park


Plasmodium vivax malaria has occurred annually in the Republic of Korea (ROK) since its re-emergence in 1993. P. vivax malaria in ROK has been strongly influenced by infected mosquitoes originating from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. Korean P. vivax malaria has shown typical characteristics of unstable malaria transmitted only during the summer season, and displays short and long incubation periods. The changing pattern of the transmission period can be predicted by analyzing the seasonal characteristics of early primary attack cases with a short incubation period. Such cases began to gradually occur earlier in the 1990s after the re-emergence. Most of the malaria cases after mid-August are presumed to be early primary attack, short incubation period cases. Only primary transmission was possible until the early 2000s, whereas up to fourth or fifth transmission occurred in the mid-2000s. The results indicate that the length of transmission period has been gradually extending, which may be ascribed to a climate change-mediated temperature rise. Malaria and climate data should be integrated to analyze and predict the influence of climate change on malaria occurrence in ROK

Topics: Special Topic
Publisher: The Korean Society of Environmental Health and Toxicology
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Provided by: PubMed Central

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