Impact of meteorological factors on the incidence of bacillary dysentery in Beijing, China: A time series analysis (1970-2012)

Long Yan, Hong Wang, Xuan ZHANG, Ming Yue Li, Juan He*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: Influence of meteorological variables on the transmission of bacillary dysentery (BD) is under investigated topic and effective forecasting models as public health tool are lacking. This paper aimed to quantify the relationship between meteorological variables and BD cases in Beijing and to establish an effective forecasting model. Methods: A time series analysis was conducted in the Beijing area based upon monthly data on weather variables (i.e. temperature, rainfall, relative humidity, vapor pressure, and wind speed) and on the number of BD cases during the period 1970–2012. Autoregressive integrated moving average models with explanatory variables (ARIMAX) were built based on the data from 1970 to 2004. Prediction of monthly BD cases from 2005 to 2012 was made using the established models. The prediction accuracy was evaluated by the mean square error (MSE). Results: Firstly, temperature with 2-month and 7-month lags and rainfall with 12-month lag were found positively correlated with the number of BD cases in Beijing. Secondly, ARIMAX model with covariates of temperature with 7-month lag (β = 0.021, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.004–0.038) and rainfall with 12-month lag (β = 0.023, 95% CI: 0.009–0.037) displayed the highest prediction accuracy. Conclusions: The ARIMAX model developed in this study showed an accurate goodness of fit and precise prediction accuracy in the short term, which would be beneficial for government departments to take early public health measures to prevent and control possible BD popularity.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0182937
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General


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