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Latitudinal variations in seasonal activity of influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV): a global comparative review.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(2):e54445.Plos

Abstract

BACKGROUND

There is limited information on influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) seasonal patterns in tropical areas, although there is renewed interest in understanding the seasonal drivers of respiratory viruses.

METHODS

We review geographic variations in seasonality of laboratory-confirmed influenza and RSV epidemics in 137 global locations based on literature review and electronic sources. We assessed peak timing and epidemic duration and explored their association with geography and study settings. We fitted time series model to weekly national data available from the WHO influenza surveillance system (FluNet) to further characterize seasonal parameters.

RESULTS

Influenza and RSV activity consistently peaked during winter months in temperate locales, while there was greater diversity in the tropics. Several temperate locations experienced semi-annual influenza activity with peaks occurring in winter and summer. Semi-annual activity was relatively common in tropical areas of Southeast Asia for both viruses. Biennial cycles of RSV activity were identified in Northern Europe. Both viruses exhibited weak latitudinal gradients in the timing of epidemics by hemisphere, with peak timing occurring later in the calendar year with increasing latitude (P<0.03). Time series model applied to influenza data from 85 countries confirmed the presence of latitudinal gradients in timing, duration, seasonal amplitude, and between-year variability of epidemics. Overall, 80% of tropical locations experienced distinct RSV seasons lasting 6 months or less, while the percentage was 50% for influenza.

CONCLUSION

Our review combining literature and electronic data sources suggests that a large fraction of tropical locations experience focused seasons of respiratory virus activity in individual years. Information on seasonal patterns remains limited in large undersampled regions, included Africa and Central America. Future studies should attempt to link the observed latitudinal gradients in seasonality of viral epidemics with climatic and population factors, and explore regional differences in disease transmission dynamics and attack rates.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Fogarty International Center, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, United States of America.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

Language

eng

PubMed ID

23457451

Citation

Bloom-Feshbach, Kimberly, et al. "Latitudinal Variations in Seasonal Activity of Influenza and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV): a Global Comparative Review." PloS One, vol. 8, no. 2, 2013, pp. e54445.
Bloom-Feshbach K, Alonso WJ, Charu V, et al. Latitudinal variations in seasonal activity of influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV): a global comparative review. PLoS One. 2013;8(2):e54445.
Bloom-Feshbach, K., Alonso, W. J., Charu, V., Tamerius, J., Simonsen, L., Miller, M. A., & Viboud, C. (2013). Latitudinal variations in seasonal activity of influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV): a global comparative review. PloS One, 8(2), e54445. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0054445
Bloom-Feshbach K, et al. Latitudinal Variations in Seasonal Activity of Influenza and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV): a Global Comparative Review. PLoS One. 2013;8(2):e54445. PubMed PMID: 23457451.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Latitudinal variations in seasonal activity of influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV): a global comparative review. AU - Bloom-Feshbach,Kimberly, AU - Alonso,Wladimir J, AU - Charu,Vivek, AU - Tamerius,James, AU - Simonsen,Lone, AU - Miller,Mark A, AU - Viboud,Cécile, Y1 - 2013/02/14/ PY - 2012/07/23/received PY - 2012/12/11/accepted PY - 2013/3/5/entrez PY - 2013/3/5/pubmed PY - 2013/8/27/medline SP - e54445 EP - e54445 JF - PloS one JO - PLoS One VL - 8 IS - 2 N2 - BACKGROUND: There is limited information on influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) seasonal patterns in tropical areas, although there is renewed interest in understanding the seasonal drivers of respiratory viruses. METHODS: We review geographic variations in seasonality of laboratory-confirmed influenza and RSV epidemics in 137 global locations based on literature review and electronic sources. We assessed peak timing and epidemic duration and explored their association with geography and study settings. We fitted time series model to weekly national data available from the WHO influenza surveillance system (FluNet) to further characterize seasonal parameters. RESULTS: Influenza and RSV activity consistently peaked during winter months in temperate locales, while there was greater diversity in the tropics. Several temperate locations experienced semi-annual influenza activity with peaks occurring in winter and summer. Semi-annual activity was relatively common in tropical areas of Southeast Asia for both viruses. Biennial cycles of RSV activity were identified in Northern Europe. Both viruses exhibited weak latitudinal gradients in the timing of epidemics by hemisphere, with peak timing occurring later in the calendar year with increasing latitude (P<0.03). Time series model applied to influenza data from 85 countries confirmed the presence of latitudinal gradients in timing, duration, seasonal amplitude, and between-year variability of epidemics. Overall, 80% of tropical locations experienced distinct RSV seasons lasting 6 months or less, while the percentage was 50% for influenza. CONCLUSION: Our review combining literature and electronic data sources suggests that a large fraction of tropical locations experience focused seasons of respiratory virus activity in individual years. Information on seasonal patterns remains limited in large undersampled regions, included Africa and Central America. Future studies should attempt to link the observed latitudinal gradients in seasonality of viral epidemics with climatic and population factors, and explore regional differences in disease transmission dynamics and attack rates. SN - 1932-6203 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/23457451/Latitudinal_variations_in_seasonal_activity_of_influenza_and_respiratory_syncytial_virus__RSV_:_a_global_comparative_review_ L2 - https://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0054445 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -