Scientists and policy makers are increasingly interested in the connections between biodiversity and human health. While this area accounts for a relatively small proportion of the research articles citing use of GBIF-mediated data, it is an emerging field and includes modelling of vectors of human diseases based on climate change scenarios, as well as ethno-botanical research that uses plant distribution data to study the relationship between biodiversity and traditional medicines. Other areas of interest include using distribution data to analyse medicinal compounds in plants, and genetic characterization of human diseases and host organisms.
Types of use
Recent studies have used GBIF-mediated data to:
- Predict the spread of monkeypox virus in Central Africa by modelling the occurrence of several mammal species believed to spread the disease;
- Model the likely future spread of malaria-carrying mosquitos in the Neotropics;
- Map priority areas for plant conservation in Australia based on the concentration of species of importance to Aboriginal communities for traditional medicine.
Peer-reviewed publications using GBIF-mediated data to assist research relating to human health and biodiversity, including disease vectors and medicines
Most recent 3 publications in this category:see more...
Partnerships and collaborations
GBIF provided seed funding for the MosquitoMap project, a product of the Walter Reed Biosystematics Unit based in the Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC. This project is a clearing house for mosquito disease vector collection records and distribution models. GBIF's national node for Australia, the Atlas of Living Australia, has collaborated with the Customary Medicinal Knowledgebase (CMKb), based at Macquarie University, to integrate traditional knowledge with other information on Australian biodiversity.