Potential arbovirus emergence and implications for the United Kingdom

Emerg Infect Dis. 2006 Apr;12(4):549-55. doi: 10.3201/eid1204.051010.


Arboviruses have evolved a number of strategies to survive environmental challenges. This review examines the factors that may determine arbovirus emergence, provides examples of arboviruses that have emerged into new habitats, reviews the arbovirus situation in western Europe in detail, discusses potential arthropod vectors, and attempts to predict the risk for arbovirus emergence in the United Kingdom. We conclude that climate change is probably the most important requirement for the emergence of arthropodborne diseases such as dengue fever, yellow fever, Rift Valley fever, Japanese encephalitis, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, bluetongue, and African horse sickness in the United Kingdom. While other arboviruses, such as West Nile virus, Sindbis virus, Tahyna virus, and Louping ill virus, apparently circulate in the United Kingdom, they do not appear to present an imminent threat to humans or animals.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arbovirus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Arbovirus Infections / virology
  • Arboviruses / isolation & purification
  • Arboviruses / physiology*
  • Communicable Diseases, Emerging / epidemiology*
  • Communicable Diseases, Emerging / virology*
  • Culicidae / virology
  • Humans
  • United Kingdom / epidemiology