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In PLoS neglected tropical diseases ; h5-index 79.0

Ross River virus (RRV) is the most common and widespread arbovirus in Australia. Epidemiological models of RRV increase understanding of RRV transmission and help provide early warning of outbreaks to reduce incidence. However, RRV predictive models have not been systematically reviewed, analysed, and compared. The hypothesis of this systematic review was that summarising the epidemiological models applied to predict RRV disease and analysing model performance could elucidate drivers of RRV incidence and transmission patterns. We performed a systematic literature search in PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, and Scopus for studies of RRV using population-based data, incorporating at least one epidemiological model and analysing the association between exposures and RRV disease. Forty-three articles, all of high or medium quality, were included. Twenty-two (51.2%) used generalised linear models and 11 (25.6%) used time-series models. Climate and weather data were used in 27 (62.8%) and mosquito abundance or related data were used in 14 (32.6%) articles as model covariates. A total of 140 models were included across the articles. Rainfall (69 models, 49.3%), temperature (66, 47.1%) and tide height (45, 32.1%) were the three most commonly used exposures. Ten (23.3%) studies published data related to model performance. This review summarises current knowledge of RRV modelling and reveals a research gap in comparing predictive methods. To improve predictive accuracy, new methods for forecasting, such as non-linear mixed models and machine learning approaches, warrant investigation.

Qian Wei, Viennet Elvina, Glass Kathryn, Harley David