Research – Campylobacter infections expected to increase due to climate change in Northern Europe

Campylobacter kswfoodworld

Global climate change is predicted to alter precipitation and temperature patterns across the world, affecting a range of infectious diseases and particularly foodborne infections such as Campylobacter. In this study, we used national surveillance data to analyse the relationship between climate and campylobacteriosis in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden and estimate the impact of climate changes on future disease patterns. We show that Campylobacter incidences are linked to increases in temperature and especially precipitation in the week before illness, suggesting a non-food transmission route. These four countries may experience a doubling of Campylobacter cases by the end of the 2080s, corresponding to around 6,000 excess cases per year caused only by climate changes. Considering the strong worldwide burden of campylobacteriosis, it is important to assess local and regional impacts of climate change in order to initiate timely public health management and adaptation strategies.

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