VECLIMIT Consortium led by Prof. Olli Vapalahti funded by the Academy of Finland for a special call on "Climate Change and Health"
Vector-borne diseases (VBD) are posing an increasing threat to humans. Quantifying this risk is complicated as it arises from the interplay between multiple hosts, vector and pathogen species and the environment, including changing climate. This consortium (partners from Universities of Helsinki, Jyväskylä and Turku, Luke, NIHW, FFA and FMI) aims to estimate and predict these risks in relation to climate change in Finland. This will be achieved by integrating existing long-term human disease incidence data with data on host communities and environment using modern analyses tools, empirical field studies and modelling. The ultimate goal is to better quantify environmental and societal factors that drive VBD and provide essential information for intervention strategies. The main focus is on tick-borne diseases (Lyme borreliosis and tick-borne encephalitis), but the concepts and methods developed can be used in studying other VBDs affected by climate change.