Topographic determinants of foot and mouth disease transmission in the UK 2001 epidemic

Nicholas J. Savill, Darren J. Shaw, Rob Deardon, Michael J. Tildesley, Matthew J. Keeling, Mark E.J. Woolhouse, Stephen P. Brooks, Bryan T. Grenfell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Background: A key challenge for modelling infectious disease dynamics is to understand the spatial spread of infection in real landscapes. This ideally requires a parallel record of spatial epidemic spread and a detailed map of susceptible host density along with relevant transport links and geographical features. Results: Here we analyse the most detailed such data to date arising from the UK 2001 foot and mouth epidemic. We show that Euclidean distance between infectious and susceptible premises is a better predictor of transmission risk than shortest and quickest routes via road, except where major geographical features intervene. Conclusion: Thus, a simple spatial transmission kernel based on Euclidean distance suffices in most regions, probably reflecting the multiplicity of transmission routes during the epidemic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3
JournalBMC Veterinary Research
StatePublished - Jan 16 2006
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Veterinary


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