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Another emerging mosquito-borne disease? Endemic Ross River Virus transmission in the absence of marsupial reservoirs


Flies, EJ and Lau, CL and Carver, S and Weinstein, P, Another emerging mosquito-borne disease? Endemic Ross River Virus transmission in the absence of marsupial reservoirs, Bioscience, 68, (4) pp. 288-293. ISSN 0006-3568 (2018) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Institute of Biological Sciences. All rights reserved.

DOI: doi:10.1093/biosci/biy011


Ross River virus (RRV) is endemic to Australia and Papua New Guinea, with marsupials (especially macropods) as the primary reservoir hosts. Its geographic range was thought to be limited by the distribution of reservoir hosts, but recent evidence suggests that the virus can circulate endemically in the Pacific Islands, where marsupials are absent. RRV therefore has the potential for wider emergence because mammalian diversity in the Pacific Islands is limited and the possible species that have been sustaining endemic transmission are panglobal in distribution. Furthermore, RRV is a vector generalist and can be transmitted by numerous mosquito species, including Culex and the globally invasive Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus. We review the evidence for RRV expanding its host and geographic range from prehistoric times to the present and for it to potentially pose a threat as another emerging arbovirus with significant implications for human health far beyond its currently known endemic range.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:emerging infectious disease, Ross River virus, reservoir, zoonotic
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Ecology not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Flies, EJ (Dr Emily Flies)
UTAS Author:Carver, S (Associate Professor Scott Carver)
ID Code:125125
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:13
Deposited By:Plant Science
Deposited On:2018-03-28
Last Modified:2019-04-17

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