Measuring, mapping, monitoring and mitigating drivers of the emergence of zoonotic and food-borne diseases: a case study

Lead Research Organisation: University of Edinburgh
Department Name: Unknown

Abstract

Over 60% of human diseases originate in animals, many in domestic livestock. Infections that infect both animals and people are called zoonoses, and are caused by different groups of pathogens, including viruses, bacteria and parasites, and are transmitted in many different ways, including through the environment and via contaminated food. As a group, zoonoses are a very significant public health problem, especially in developing countries where this research is focussed. We are particularly interested in understanding what environmental, social, demographic, economic and climate variables come together to cause a pathogen to ?jump? in to the human population from domestic animals (we call these jumps ?disease emergence?). The study will be conducted in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, because previous work has identified urban and peri-urban (UPU) settings as important places where such a jump can take place, but few studies have examined the particular circumstances of the UPU environment that cause this to happen in any useful detail.

This proposal aims to bring together diverse expertise, to think laterally about the problem of zoonotic and food-borne disease emergence in UPU settings, and to develop new approaches to tackling it. The most important aspect of our approach is the inclusion of a very wide diversity of expertise and backgrounds, covering the breadth of topics that matter in UPU environments. Our aim is to consider the issues, data needs and research opportunities from these different perspectives, supported by extensive analysis of the existing literature and a small pilot data collection exercise. The priorities and approaches that emerge from these activities will form the basis for a further application to gather complete data sets and provide the evidence-base for changes to policy.

Technical Summary

We aim to create a multi-disciplinary grouping of researchers, policy makers and other stakeholders to address the issue of the emergence of zoonotic and food-borne diseases in urban and peri-urban (UPU) settings in the developing world. Our focus is on diseases involving livestock reservoirs, using Nairobi, Kenya as a case study. Over 50% of Africa?s population will soon be urbanised, and urban farming and livestock keeping are significant income generators; urbanisation has been identified as one of the main drivers of the emergence of human diseases, though with little specific focus. It has been proposed that the processes leading to the emergence of new diseases are likely to be those that also matter for the re-emergence of endemic zoonotic and food-borne infections. Understanding these as models is a tractable problem; our study will therefore 1) improve our ability to predict the occurrence and burden of new diseases and 2) provide an opportunity to understand the biology and social ecology of existing but neglected zoonoses.

Our project grouping will be made up of epidemiologists, medical practitioners, field and policy veterinarians, public health policy makers, human and livestock demographers, sociologists, economists, specialists in food-borne disease systems, urban planners, climate change experts, geographers, urban waste managers, government officials, human and livestock health extension workers, food trade bodies, NGOs and private sector diagnostics manufacturers. We will consider a broad set of issues, priorities and data needs relating to UPU environments, developing a research strategy that goes beyond the usual speciality-focussed agenda, with the formulation of appropriate mitigation policies in mind.

Our focus will be: 1) measuring drivers of emergence (eg social factors motivating and affecting livestock keeping, movements of people, livestock, current and projected urban planning and sanitation needs; 2) mapping drivers (e.g. urban landcover change, trends in climatic extremes in rural zones and country-scale climate changes, the dynamic patterns of UPU settlement, the distribution of people and livestock); 3) monitoring emergence (e.g. how do people in UPU environments access health care, how are illnesses diagnosed, what is currently known about the human burden of zoonoses in UPU settings, what is the penetration of diagnostic facilities, how does the immuno-compromised UPU population influence emergence?); 4) mitigating against zoonotic and food-borne disease emergence (e.g. community-based strategies, drought relief, regulation).

The project will be delivered through cross-disciplinary discussions and workshops, a small pilot data collection exercise and the writing of a research paper and a report.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description ESEI Consortium Resarch Grant
Amount £2,550,000 (GBP)
Organisation Medical Research Council (MRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2012 
End 04/2017
 
Title New paradigm for understanding disease emergence 
Description We developed a research proposal that has been recognized (by an MRC funding panel) as a potential new paradigm in understanding disease emergence 
Type Of Material Biological samples 
Year Produced 2012 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Collaborations with additional partners 
 
Description Co-PI on Consortium Grant (ESEI) 
Organisation African Population and Health Research Center
Country Kenya 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution All collaborators are now actively working together in the interdisciplinary ESEI project.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium Grant
Impact This is an interdisciplinary collaboration, involving Human medicine Veterinary public health Demography Remote sensing Livestock demography Economics Social science Anthropology Microbiology
Start Year 2010
 
Description Co-PI on Consortium Grant (ESEI) 
Organisation Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO)
Department Animal Production and Health Division
Country Italy 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution All collaborators are now actively working together in the interdisciplinary ESEI project.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium Grant
Impact This is an interdisciplinary collaboration, involving Human medicine Veterinary public health Demography Remote sensing Livestock demography Economics Social science Anthropology Microbiology
Start Year 2010
 
Description Co-PI on Consortium Grant (ESEI) 
Organisation International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED)
Department Human Settlements Group
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution All collaborators are now actively working together in the interdisciplinary ESEI project.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium Grant
Impact This is an interdisciplinary collaboration, involving Human medicine Veterinary public health Demography Remote sensing Livestock demography Economics Social science Anthropology Microbiology
Start Year 2010
 
Description Co-PI on Consortium Grant (ESEI) 
Organisation International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI)
Country Kenya 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution All collaborators are now actively working together in the interdisciplinary ESEI project.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium Grant
Impact This is an interdisciplinary collaboration, involving Human medicine Veterinary public health Demography Remote sensing Livestock demography Economics Social science Anthropology Microbiology
Start Year 2010
 
Description Co-PI on Consortium Grant (ESEI) 
Organisation Kenyan Institute for Medical Research (KEMRI)
Department Centre for Microbiology Research
Country Kenya 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution All collaborators are now actively working together in the interdisciplinary ESEI project.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium Grant
Impact This is an interdisciplinary collaboration, involving Human medicine Veterinary public health Demography Remote sensing Livestock demography Economics Social science Anthropology Microbiology
Start Year 2010
 
Description Co-PI on Consortium Grant (ESEI) 
Organisation Royal Veterinary College (RVC)
Department Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences (formerly Veterinary Clinical Sciences)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution All collaborators are now actively working together in the interdisciplinary ESEI project.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium Grant
Impact This is an interdisciplinary collaboration, involving Human medicine Veterinary public health Demography Remote sensing Livestock demography Economics Social science Anthropology Microbiology
Start Year 2010
 
Description Co-PI on Consortium Grant (ESEI) 
Organisation University College London
Department Bartlett Development Planning Unit
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution All collaborators are now actively working together in the interdisciplinary ESEI project.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium Grant
Impact This is an interdisciplinary collaboration, involving Human medicine Veterinary public health Demography Remote sensing Livestock demography Economics Social science Anthropology Microbiology
Start Year 2010
 
Description Co-PI on Consortium Grant (ESEI) 
Organisation University of Nairobi
Department Department of Veterinary Public Health and Toxicology
Country Kenya 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution All collaborators are now actively working together in the interdisciplinary ESEI project.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium GrantCollaborator is a co-PI on an ESEI Consortium Grant
Impact This is an interdisciplinary collaboration, involving Human medicine Veterinary public health Demography Remote sensing Livestock demography Economics Social science Anthropology Microbiology
Start Year 2010
 
Description ZELS 
Organisation International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI)
Country Kenya 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution The partnership created by the MRC ESEI award was successful in applying for a Zoonoses In Emeging Livestock Systems grant from the BBSRc woth 3.3 M pounds.
Collaborator Contribution Partners are co-PIs in the new ZELS application
Impact Successful grant application
Start Year 2014
 
Description ZELS 
Organisation Kenyan Institute for Medical Research (KEMRI)
Country Kenya 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution The partnership created by the MRC ESEI award was successful in applying for a Zoonoses In Emeging Livestock Systems grant from the BBSRc woth 3.3 M pounds.
Collaborator Contribution Partners are co-PIs in the new ZELS application
Impact Successful grant application
Start Year 2014
 
Description ZELS 
Organisation University of Edinburgh
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The partnership created by the MRC ESEI award was successful in applying for a Zoonoses In Emeging Livestock Systems grant from the BBSRc woth 3.3 M pounds.
Collaborator Contribution Partners are co-PIs in the new ZELS application
Impact Successful grant application
Start Year 2014
 
Description ZELS 
Organisation University of Nairobi
Country Kenya 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The partnership created by the MRC ESEI award was successful in applying for a Zoonoses In Emeging Livestock Systems grant from the BBSRc woth 3.3 M pounds.
Collaborator Contribution Partners are co-PIs in the new ZELS application
Impact Successful grant application
Start Year 2014
 
Description ZELS 
Organisation University of Nottingham
Department School of Biomedical Sciences Nottingham
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The partnership created by the MRC ESEI award was successful in applying for a Zoonoses In Emeging Livestock Systems grant from the BBSRc woth 3.3 M pounds.
Collaborator Contribution Partners are co-PIs in the new ZELS application
Impact Successful grant application
Start Year 2014
 
Description Kenya Zoonotic Disease Technical Working Group 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Type Of Presentation Keynote/Invited Speaker
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Key policy makers from several government ministries learnt about our future research plans

Involvement of government policy makers in the research design process
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011,2012