6,545 research outputs found

    History of Mosquitoborne Diseases in the United States and Implications for New Pathogens

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    The introduction and spread of West Nile virus and the recent introduction of chikungunya and Zika viruses into the Americas have raised concern about the potential for various tropical pathogens to become established in North America. A historical analysis of yellow fever and malaria incidences in the United States suggests that it is not merely a temperate climate that keeps these pathogens from becoming established. Instead, socioeconomic changes are the most likely explanation for why these pathogens essentially disappeared from the United States yet remain a problem in tropical areas. In contrast to these anthroponotic pathogens that require humans in their transmission cycle, zoonotic pathogens are only slightly affected by socioeconomic factors, which is why West Nile virus became established in North America. In light of increasing globalization, we need to be concerned about the introduction of pathogens such as Rift Valley fever, Japanese encephalitis, and Venezuelan equine encephalitis viruses

    Mapping Yellow Fever Epidemics As a Potential Indicator of the Historical Range of \u3ci\u3eAedes aegypti\u3c/i\u3e In the United States

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    Background: Yellow fever (YF) plagued the United States from the 1690s until 1905, resulting in thousands of deaths. Within the US, Aedes aegypti is the only YF vector and almost no data exists for the location of this species prior to the early 1900s. Objectives: To determine the historical range of Ae. aegypti we examined the occurrence of YF epidemics across time and space. We hypothesized that historically Ae. aegypti was driven by human population density, like its contemporary range suggests. Methods: To test this hypothesis, we compiled a list of YF cases in the US, human population density, location, and the number of people infected. This data was mapped using ArcGIS and was analyzed using linear regression models to determine the relationship among variables. Findings: The historic range was generally south of 40º latitude, from Texas in the west to Florida in the east, with concentrations along major waterways like the Mississippi River. Infected individuals and human population density were strongly correlated across the whole dataset as well as by decade. Main conclusions: Although other factors likely affected the range of Ae. aegypti, we found that human population density was related to the number of people infected with historic YF infections

    Yellow fever in the Felicianas: the epidemic of 1878 and its effects upon the residents of these rural parishes

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    This research documents the spread of yellow fever across the rural Louisiana parishes of East Feliciana and West Feliciana in 1878 and examines the reactions and responses of the residents to medical, social and economic stresses produced by that epidemic. Descriptive details highlight the variability of individual ideas and mindsets at play against the backdrop of accepted paradigms, belief systems and current technology. In 1878 the Aëdes aegypti mosquito had not yet been identified as the vector of the arbovirus (arthropod borne virus) that causes yellow fever. A short history of yellow fever in the United States and a discussion of the vector and the arbovirus are included to clarify the advance of the disease. Quarantines of the towns and villages of the Felicianas prohibited burial of yellow fever victims in community cemeteries and official records for these two rural parishes were rarely available at the parish, state, or federal level. Information was drawn primarily from texts, journals and newspapers of the time. Notations from the 1878 journal of Henry Marston, a resident of Clinton, Louisiana, were invaluable. The advance of yellow fever into East and West Feliciana is outlined from the first reported cases in New Orleans in May of 1878. The records of each parish are examined separately and the information gathered is combined and analyzed

    BEYOND WHAT WE KNEW:HEALTH AND DISEASE AMONG BLACKS,WITH AN EMPHASIS ON WOMEN IN MEMPHIS, FROM SLAVERY TO EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY

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    Letoshia, Foster, Ph.D. The University of Memphis, August 2020. Beyond What We Knew: Health, and Disease Among Blacks: With an Emphasis on Women in Memphis, From Slavery to Early Twentieth CenturyThis dissertation provides a comprehensive analysis of health issues among Black people in Memphis from the antebellum period through the early twentieth century. Throughout this period, slavery and Jim Crow had an inescapable effect on black Memphians lives. Race and gender were strong indicators for poor health outcomes. The topics of morbidity and mortality among Blacks over a seventy-year period is reflected in various types of scholarship, especially medical history and regional histories on race, gender, and disease. By examining primary sources that have been overlooked by historians, this dissertation will detail how gender and race created physical and psychosocial health problems for Black people, especially women. This study also describes the sociocultural ideologies of racism and segregation that resulted in poor health and early deaths for Blacks. This dissertation situates Blacks as community advocates for racial uplift and agency. I will demonstrate how the Black middle class and healthcare professionals in Memphis addressed health problems, particularly health disparities, in their communities by creating medical institutions, establishing training schools for nurses, and developing alternative institutions to improve care

    Complete Issue - Vol. 83, No. 3 and 4

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    A Settlement Geography of Three Ports on the Northern Gulf of Mexico: The Role of Rivers, Railroads, and Hurricanes: 1830-1930

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    The settlement geography of the Gulf Coast of the United States possesses and shares unique cultural and historical characteristics. The thesis analyzes three selected towns along the coast: Indianola, Texas; Pascagoula, Mississippi; and Apalachicola, Florida. The thesis focuses on describing each town’s historical background and early efforts at permanent settlement, the expansion of the settlement using various modes of transportation such as shipping and railroads, the economic and agricultural base that was used to improve the settlement’s reputation, the characteristics of the settlement’s concept of folk housing, and the impact and recovery of the settlement from disasters such as fire and hurricanes. In other words, the thesis examined the settlement histories of three towns, and the importance of geographic site and situation to settlement success or failure

    Pandemic Bibliography

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    A bibliography of pandemic disease compiled for a class

    Urban yellow fever diffusion patterns and the role of micro-environmental factors in disease dissemination: a temporal-spatial analysis of the Memphis epidemic of 1878

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    Most investigations that examine diffusion of disease through urban areas give relatively scant attention to the \u27micro-environment.\u27 Employing the many methods of macro-environmental analysis, most studies do not attempt to identify street-level or even residence-level temporal-spatial patterns of disease diffusion. As a result, the mechanisms that lead to diffusion on such small scales are left relatively undefined. There is no doubt that cumulatively these small-scale mechanisms contribute to the diffusion of disease over the urban environment. However, the level of contribution and the specific details of their dynamics remain unclear. This thesis investigated some of these unexplored areas by presenting a temporal-spatial analysis of the Memphis Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1878. The area (downtown Memphis), the time (August-December 1878), and the epidemic (yellow fever) are centered around a collection of books, maps, and reference materials that range from contemporary accounts of the epidemic to modern virology texts. This information was used to construct a modern database and GIS that could be analyzed and manipulated by various statistical means. Hot spots and multi-death residences in particular were examined for interrelated patterns. Temporal-spatial cartographic representations of these areas proved to be the easiest means by which to extract disease patterns. Results indicated that social and cultural interactions probably play a greater role in yellow fever dissemination than previously thought. However, additional studies of complete data sets are required for a more comprehensive understanding of the exact dynamics and mechanisms that underlie urban yellow fever diffusion

    The Early Career of John L. Riddell as a Science Lecturer in the 19th Century

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    Author Institution: Department of Biological Sciences, Kent State UniversityJohn Leonard Riddell (1807-1865), trained in science, especially botany and geology, by Amos Eaton at the Rensselaer School at Troy, New York, became a professional itinerant science lecturer. He began in Ogdensburg, New York, then in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with lectures on chemistry and physics. From 1832 to 1836 he concentrated his efforts in Ohio, focusing his lectures on botany, particularly medical botany, chemistry, geology, and electricity. He continued his botanical studies, including the collection of plant specimens, and studied medicine, obtaining an M.D. degree from Daniel Drake's School, the Medical Department of the Cincinnati College. After departing Ohio to teach chemistry at the Medical College of Louisiana in New Orleans, he published and lectured on science fiction based on fancied documentation from a presumed former student, Orrin Lindsay, at Cincinnati. Riddell was an early 19th century science lecturer, field botanist, and author of science fiction
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