Global Infection Outbreaks Rise over Past 30 Years
Jessica Berman, VOA News
Last updated on: October 29, 2014 4:20 PM (source)
Global disease outbreaks are on the rise, according to a new study, but fewer people are becoming infected. The communicable illnesses range from the exotic, including the current Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa, to more common strains of influenza, hepatitis and tuberculosis.
研究指出，全球疾病爆發的次數升高(on the rise)，但感染人數相對較少。爆發疫情的傳染病(communicable illness)包含非本土的(exotic)，如現在西非爆發的伊波拉病毒，也有一般常見的流行性感冒、肝炎(hepatitis)、肺結核(tuberculosis)的病毒和菌種(strain)。
There have been more than 12,000 outbreaks around the world since 1980, affecting 44 million people.
The findings are based on information reported to the Global Infectious Disease and Epidemiology On-Line Network, or GIDEON, an international database that keeps track of outbreaks. It stores information on 215 infectious diseases in 219 countries. Outbreaks of disease that are quickly identified can be treated immediately and people who are suspected of being infected can be quarantined if necessary.
While the number of outbreaks is going up, the good news, according to Sohini Ramachandran, is fewer people are becoming infected today than in the past, "which might indicate that we are getting better as a society at large in preventing the spread of outbreaks once they start or identifying outbreaks rapidly."
研究的發現是根據回報給「全球傳染病與流行病線上系統」(Global Infectious Disease and Epidemiology On-Line Network，GIDEON)的訊息。GIDEON是一個追蹤(keep track of . . .)國際疫情的資料庫(database)，儲存有219個國家中215種傳染病的資料。疫情爆發被快速確認後就能立即治療，在必要時(if necessary)，疑似(be suspected of . . .)感染者也能被隔離檢疫(be quarantined)。
根據專家的看法，疫情爆發的次數雖然變多，但好消息是，跟過去比起來，受感染的人數變少。她說，「這也許意味著，就社會整體(as a society at large)而言，我們更有能力在疫情爆發之際就防止其擴散，也能更快的確認爆發疫情。」
A Brown University biostatistics expert, Ramachandran conducted the assessment of GIDEON data along with several colleagues. Their results were published in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface.
Most of the diseases reported to GIDEON, according to Ramachandran, first infected animals, then jumped the species barrier to humans. That is the case with the swine and avian flus and, most recently, the Ebola virus, which is thought to have originated in fruit bats.
“When animals are kept in really tight quarters with other animals, anything that is pathogenic among them can spread very rapidly. And then when humans are nearby, that pathogen can be transmitted to a human host," she said.
布朗大學的生物統計學(biostatistics)專家Ramachandran與同事以GIDEON上的資料進行評估(conduct the assessment of . . .)。他們的研究結果發表於皇家學會的界面期刊 (Journal of the Royal Society Interface)。(編按：interface本是「界面、接觸面」的意思，依照EBSCO資料庫的說明http://www2.ebsco.com/zh-tw/PubProdSvcs/RoyalSociety/Pages/index.aspx，本期刊「含蓋生物學、醫學應用化學、數學、工程學、材料科學和物理學等相互關聯的學科研究文章」。interface (界面、接觸面)一字表示出該期刊有自然學科間跨領域接觸與整合的特色。)
根據Ramachandran的研究，GIDEON上回報的疾病大多數是動物感染後才跨越物種障礙(species barrier)傳染給人類。豬流感(swine flu)與禽流感(avian flu)都是這樣的例子(that is the case with . . .)，最近的伊波拉病毒也被認為是起源於(originate in . . .)水果蝙蝠。
Ramachandran says increasingly dense population centers are setting the stage for a rise in unique disease outbreaks.
Researchers were also curious to learn if global warming was causing a rise in the number of infections. Ramachandran says it does not appear so.
“We are experiencing a more rich type of set of pathogens as a human species. But overall the burden of infectious disease outbreaks has been decreasing in the recent past," she said.
The top 10 animal-transmitted diseases between 2000 and 2010 were salmonella, E. coli, influenza A, hepatitis A, anthrax, dengue fever, dysentery, tuberculosis, chikungunya and trichinosis. So-called zoonotic diseases, according to the report, accounted for 56 percent of all disease outbreaks since 1980.
Examples of human-specific infections included cholera, measles, mumps and typhoid.
The study analyzed data collected between 1980 and 2013.
2000到2013年前十名的動物傳染病有沙門氏菌(salmonella )、大腸桿菌(E. coli)、A型流感、A型肝炎、炭疽熱(anthrax)、dengue fever(登革熱)、痢疾(dysentery)、肺結核、屈公病(chikungunya)與旋毛蟲病(trichinosis)。根據這份報告，這些被稱為人畜共生的傳染病(zoonotic disease)，自1980年所爆發的疫情中，占了56%的比例。
1. on the rise (v phr) 上升，增加
2. strain (n) 種，品種 *strain是多義字，當動詞使用時常用來表示「拉緊」、「使. . .過勞」之義，例 “She strained her eyes to see clearly.” (她使勁要看清楚點。)
3. hepatitis (n) 肝炎
4. tuberculosis (n) 肺結核
5. epidemiology (n) 流行病學 *本字可拆解為：epidemic (流行病)+ -ology (學科)
6. quarantine (v) 隔離 *本字字尾 -tine的發音特殊，須注意！
7. at large (prep phr) 整體而言 *at large作「整體而言」的意思時，前面需要加上一個被修飾的名詞，如新聞中的用法：。at large另一個意思是犯罪者的「未被捕、在逃」狀態，例如：The escaped prisoners are still at large. (逃跑的囚犯仍在逃。)
8. quarters (n)(pl) 住處；居所 *quarter是常見的「四分之一」的意思，但語意是指特定用途的「住處」時，需使用複數；headquarters表示 「公司總部」時也需使用複數
9. pathogenic (a) 引起疾病的 *新聞也出現名詞形：pathogen (n) 病原體
10. account for (v phr) 占全體之 . . . 比例
Check your vocabulary!
Fill in the blanks with a word or phrase from the list above. Make necessary changes. After you finish, select the text below to reveal the hidden answers.
1. Animals brought into the country are automatically quarantined.
2. Higher education accounts for about 13 percent of general fund expenditures.
3. The top floor provided living quarters for the kitchen staff.
4. Hepatitis is a disease of the liver that causes fever and makes your skin yellow.
5. This strain of wheat can grow during a cold spring.