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About Indian Ocean Basin-wide (IOBW) Index


According to the study, the Indian Ocean basin-wide (IOBW) index exhibits a close association with dengue outbreaks in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres.


Facts for Prelims

About Indian Ocean Basin-wide (IOBW) Index:

  • Representation: The IOBW Index reflects average sea-surface temperature fluctuations across the tropical Indian Ocean.
  • Predictive Indicator: It serves as a crucial indicator for forecasting the scale and timing of dengue outbreaks in various countries.
  • Hemispheric Association: The index demonstrates a stronger correlation with the Southern Hemisphere compared to the Northern Hemisphere.
  • Regional Impact: Its influence on temperatures is particularly significant in tropical areas, impacting dengue incidence rates in regions like Brazil.
  • Seasonal Trends: Dengue epidemics peak in the Northern Hemisphere from July to October and in the Southern Hemisphere from February to April, corresponding to respective summer periods.
  • Incidence Amplitude: Higher positive IOBW index values correlate with increased dengue incidence rates, while lower values correspond to reduced incidence.
  • Teleconnections Influence: The connection between Indian Ocean temperature and dengue outbreaks is likely due to teleconnections, which transfer heat and moisture across vast distances through atmospheric patterns.

Key Facts about Dengue:

  • Causative Agent: Dengue is caused by the dengue virus (DENV).
  • Transmission: It spreads to humans primarily through bites of infected female mosquitoes, notably the Aedes aegypti species.
  • Severity: Severe dengue, also known as dengue hemorrhagic fever, can lead to significant complications such as bleeding, shock, and even death.
  • Geographical Distribution: Dengue is more prevalent in tropical and subtropical regions.
  • Symptoms: Common symptoms include high fever, headaches, body aches, nausea, and skin rash.

-Source: The Hindu

May 2024