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"The Weatherman Predicts the Outbreaks"+-

2 years ago January 09, 2013 Jan 9, 2013 Wednesday, January 09 2013 Wednesday, January 09, 2013 6:38:03 PM CST in Pat Shingleton Column
By: Pat Shingleton

The Providence Journal reports that weather-focused disease modeling could greatly improve long-term disease predictions. In the 1990s, researchers at Johns Hopkins University and the University of New Mexico predicted outbreaks of hanta virus by analyzing rain and snow data. Researchers determined that the virus was spreading from infected rodent droppings. Their research matched precipitation patterns with plants that attracted rodents. In east Africa, weather satellites predicted rainfall by measuring sea surface temperatures and cloud density. This data generated risk maps for Rift Valley fever, a virus that spreads from animals to people causing blindness and death. Other scientists examined satellite temperature anomalies to successfully predict that an out break of cholera would occur in four months. The early onset of the current flu season found no weather related predictions

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