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Published Online: 12 December 2014

Effects of Climate Change on Salmonella Infections

Publication: Foodborne Pathogens and Disease
Volume 11, Issue Number 12


Background: Climate change and global warming have been reported to increase spread of foodborne pathogens. To understand these effects on Salmonella infections, modeling approaches such as regression analysis and neural network (NN) were used.
Methods: Monthly data for Salmonella outbreaks in Mississippi (MS), Tennessee (TN), and Alabama (AL) were analyzed from 2002 to 2011 using analysis of variance and time series analysis. Meteorological data were collected and the correlation with salmonellosis was examined using regression analysis and NN.
Results: A seasonal trend in Salmonella infections was observed (p<0.001). Strong positive correlation was found between high temperature and Salmonella infections in MS and for the combined states (MS, TN, AL) models (R2=0.554; R2=0.415, respectively). NN models showed a strong effect of rise in temperature on the Salmonella outbreaks. In this study, an increase of 1°F was shown to result in four cases increase of Salmonella in MS. However, no correlation between monthly average precipitation rate and Salmonella infections was observed.
Conclusion: There is consistent evidence that gastrointestinal infection with bacterial pathogens is positively correlated with ambient temperature, as warmer temperatures enable more rapid replication. Warming trends in the United States and specifically in the southern states may increase rates of Salmonella infections.

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Information & Authors


Published In

cover image Foodborne Pathogens and Disease
Foodborne Pathogens and Disease
Volume 11Issue Number 12December 2014
Pages: 974 - 980
PubMed: 25496072


Published online: 12 December 2014
Published in print: December 2014


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Luma Akil
Department of Biology/Environmental Science, Jackson State University, Jackson, Mississippi.
H. Anwar Ahmad
Department of Biology/Environmental Science, Jackson State University, Jackson, Mississippi.
Remata S. Reddy
Department of Physics, Atmospheric Sciences and Geoscience, Jackson State University, Jackson, Mississippi.


Address correspondence to:H. Anwar Ahmad, PhDDepartment of Biology/Environmental ScienceJackson State University1400 JR Lynch StreetJSU Box 18540Jackson, MS 39207E-mail: [email protected]

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No competing financial interests exist.

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