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Title: The Future of Air Conditioning and RSV Transmission in Miami, FL and Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico
Authors: Wagatsuma, Vian
Advisors: Grenfell, Bryan
Department: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Certificate Program: Global Health and Health Policy Program
Class Year: 2023
Abstract: The proven consequences of global warming are quite dire, with rising temperatures destroying various habitats and subsequently harming all forms of life, including our very own. As we gradually experience immense heat throughout the years, there is a projected increase in space cooling use, with triple the energy needs expected globally by 2050. In these circumstances where warmer air temperatures are likely to encourage more indoor gatherings, what patterns might transpire in the future of disease dynamics? This thesis aims to dissect the impact of increased air conditioning use on respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) transmission, which may have implications for other infectious diseases. RSV is a common respiratory virus with cold-like symptoms that can become fatal among younger children. To further determine how substantial air conditioning use affects RSV disease dynamics, time-varying transmissibility values as well as case data from Baker et al. (2019) focusing on the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico and Miami, Florida were utilized, as these regions, while climatically similar, vary in air conditioning use. Simple single-strain RSV SIRI models were created via a model structure derived from White et al. (2005), following a four-year period with varying air conditioning effects on transmission. The derived results indicate the potential exacerbation of RSV transmission due to air conditioning, which can inform measures we can implement to move toward developing effective vaccines against RSV as well as increasing air conditioning efficiency and filtration.
Type of Material: Princeton University Senior Theses
Language: en
Appears in Collections:Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, 1992-2023
Global Health and Health Policy Program, 2017-2023

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