HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Biological diversity and human health; Rapid autopsy program; Snake bites and more

Loss of biological diversity threatens human health

The rapid loss of biological diversity is a major threat to human health, say researchers in the open access international health journal PLoS Medicine.

Andy Dobson (Princeton University) and colleagues cite the example of Lyme disease, which in eastern North America is transmitted to humans by a blacklegged tick harboring the Lyme bacterium.

The ticks feed on a variety of different vertebrates, including the white-footed mouse and the gray squirrel, each with a different probability of infecting the tick with the Lyme bacterium. Over 90% of ticks feeding on white-footed mice become infected compared with fewer than 15% feeding on gray squirrels, and so ticks harboring the Lyme bacterium are much more common in habitats with many mice than in habitats that harbor a diversity of other species.

These white-footed mice, say the researchers, are more common in small patches of forest. These patches, created by habitat loss and fragmentation of the remaining habitat into smaller subdivided areas, are too small to support the predators and competitors that typically keep mouse numbers down. The loss of species diversity means that the risk to humans of Lyme disease is high in small patches of forest.

Dobson and colleagues give other examples of how loss of biological diversity threatens human health, including West Nile virus, which is transmitted to humans by a range of mosquito species and which can replicate in a variety of bird species. Initial research, say the authors, suggests that cases of human West Nile virus infection are less common in areas with high bird diversity. The virus is particularly likely to replicate in house sparrows, house finches, American robins, blue jays, and grackles, all of which proliferate in heavily fragmented or otherwise degraded habitats.

"Because we are losing biological diversity at the fastest rate ever recorde
'"/>

Contact: Andrew Hyde
ahyde@plos.org
44-012-234-63330
Public Library of Science
5-Jun-2006


Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6

Related biology news :

1. Story ideas from the Journal of Biological Chemistry
2. News tips from the Journal of Biological Chemistry
3. News tips from the Journal of Biological Chemistry
4. News tips from the Journal of Biological Chemistry
5. Biologically inspired sensors can augment sonar, vision system in submarines
6. Nanotechnology for Biological, Biomedical and Chemical Sensing
7. Biological clock of honey bee more similar to humans than to insects
8. Biological pest control becomes an economic reality
9. Symposium to examine Frontiers in Biological Systems
10. Biological motors sort molecules one by one on a chip
11. Dirk Inz receives the Francqui Prize for Biological and Medical Sciences 2005

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/11/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition ... their offering. ... tracking market to grow at a CAGR of 30.37% during the ... 2017-2021, has been prepared based on an in-depth market analysis with ... its growth prospects over the coming years. The report also includes ...
(Date:4/11/2017)... -- NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ:   NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" ... of independent Directors Mr. Robin D. Richards and ... furthering the company,s corporate governance and expertise. ... Gino Pereira , Chief Executive Officer ... guidance and benefiting from their considerable expertise as we move ...
(Date:4/5/2017)... , April 5, 2017  The Allen Institute ... Allen Cell Explorer: a one-of-a-kind portal and dynamic digital ... 3D imaging data, the first application of deep learning ... human stem cell lines and a growing suite of ... platform for these and future publicly available resources created ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... Having worked on the design ... is pleased to introduce it to top lab design architects from around the country ... and VP of Industrial Design and Engineering Greg Casey will be at the show, ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... 21, 2017 , ... The AMA is happy to announce that $48,000 in ... nation. The scholarships are created through funds donated by model aviation organizations and individuals, ... by the AMA Scholarship Committee, which is made up of model aviation pilots and ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... ... April 20, 2017 , ... As part ... will explore challenging patient cases when screening for direct oral anticoagulant. When patients ... a need for bridging parental anticoagulation especially for those at high risk of ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... SANTA BARBARA, CALIFORNIA (PRWEB) , ... April 20, 2017 , ... ... process optimization firm for the life sciences and healthcare industries, is pleased to announce ... of the new established USDM subsidiary “USDM Europe GmbH” based in Germany. , ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: