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Product title :

Introduction to network analysis and its implications for animal disease modelling

Author(s) : C. Dubé, C. Ribble, D. Kelton & B. McNab

Summary :

Social networks analysis (SNA) has recently been used in veterinary epidemiology to study livestock movements. A network is obtained by considering livestock holdings as nodes in a network and movements among holdings as links among nodes. Social networks analysis enables the study of the network as a whole, exploring all the relationships among pairs of farms. Highly connected livestock holdings in the network can be identified, which can help surveillance and disease prevention activities. Observed livestock movement networks in various countries have shown an important level of contact heterogeneity and clustering (topological, not necessarily geographical or spatial) and understanding the architecture of these networks has provided a better understanding of how infections may spread. The findings of SNA studies of livestock movement should be used to build and parameterise epidemiological models of infection spread in order to improve the reliability of the outputs from these models.
 
Keywords
Epidemiological modelling – Infection spread – Livestock movements – Network analysis.

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