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The researchers studied data from Mexico about the occurrence of dengue fever and the effect of climate variables such as temperature, humidity and rainfall, as well as socioeconomic factors, such as population density and income, on the spread of the disease. They then used that data to model the infection rate in various regions of Europe over the next century. In some places, they predicted that rate of dengue fever cases will quintuple, to up to 10 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.
Almost all of the excess risk will fall on the coastal areas of the Mediterranean and Adriatic seas and the northeastern part of Italy, particularly the Po Valley, University of East Anglia medical school professor Paul Hunter said in a press release.
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That comes after a 2013 study warned that people in the United States are also at risk from dengue due to climate change. Traditionally, America has only had a few hundred reported cases of dengue each year, usually involving international travelers. But the Natural Resources Defense Council says that the mosquito that transmits dengue now is found in 28 states.