Interactions between landscape changes and host communities can regulate Echinococcus multilocularis transmission

P. GIRAUDOUX a1c1, P. S. CRAIG a2, P. DELATTRE a3, G. BAO a4, B. BARTHOLOMOT a1, S. HARRAGA a1, J.-P. QUÉRÉ a3, F. RAOUL a1, Y. WANG a5, D. SHI a4 and D.-A. VUITTON a1
a1 ISTE (EA 3184 MRT – UC INRA; EA 2276), Université de Franche-Comté 25030 Besançon Cedex, France
a2 Biosciences Research Institute & School of Environment & Life Sciences, University of Salford, M5 4WT, Salford, U.K.
a3 UMR 1062, Centre de Biologie et Gestion Populations, CS0016 34988, Montferrier Cedex, France
a4 Department of Parasitology, Lanzhou Medical College, 85 Dun Gang Xi Road, 730000 Lanzhou, P.R. of China
a5 Xinjiang Medical College, 1 Li Yu Shan Road, 830000 Urumqi, P.R. of China

Article author query
giraudoux p   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
craig p   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
delattre p   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
bao g   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
bartholomot b   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
harraga s   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
quere j-p   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
raoul f   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
wang y   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
shi d   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
vuitton d-a   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 


An area close to the Qinghai-Tibet plateau region and subject to intensive deforestation contains a large focus of human alveolar echinococcosis while sporadic human cases occur in the Doubs region of eastern France. The current review analyses and compares epidemiological and ecological results obtained in both regions. Analysis of rodent species assemblages within quantified rural landscapes in central China and eastern France shows a significant association between host species for the pathogenic helminth Echinococcus multilocularis, with prevalences of human alveolar echinococcosis and with land area under shrubland or grassland. This suggests that at the regional scale landscape can affect human disease distribution through interaction with small mammal communities and their population dynamics. Lidicker's ROMPA hypothesis helps to explain this association and provides a novel explanation of how landscape changes may result in increased risk of a rodent-borne zoonotic disease.

Key Words: Landscape ecology; landscape epidemiology; transmission ecology; small mammals; deforestation.

c1 Patrick Giraudoux, ISTE, Université de Franche-Comté, 1 place Leclerc, 25030 Besançon cedex, France. Tel: +33 381 665 745. Fax: +33 381 665 797. E-mail: