Chopping Down of Rain Forest Can Result in Malaria Epidemics, Say UW Researchers

Cutting down the rain forest can hurt animals like toucans, golden lion tamarind monkeys and poison dart frogs, and now, human beings too.

According to a new research from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon could result in malaria pandemics years later.

The results are some of the most thorough yet to relate to ecological changes with the multiplication of sickness.

The study that came out on Wednesday in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases merged malaria case reports with high-resolution satellite images from a distant, thinly inhabited area of tropical Brazil about half the size of Rhode Island.

The study discovered that for every square kilometer of forest chop down, the numeral of accounted malaria instances surged by 50%.

UW-Madison Epidemiologist, Sarah Olson, Lead Author of the study, said, “The work points out how tropical forest conservation can be important for human health”.

Olson and her associates at UW supposed that cutting down of rain forest might cause an inflammation of malaria cases five to 10 years later.

To check this hypothesis, they examined satellite images of Mâncio Lima County in western Brazil from 1997 to 2000.

Olson said that the imagery, which had fine resolution of about an acre, showed a mélange of clear land, shrubs and flourishing rain forest.