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Higher Solar Irradiance Is Associated With a Lower Incidence of Coronavirus Disease 2019
Guasp et al., Clinical Infectious Diseases, doi:10.1093/cid/ciaa575
Guasp et al., Higher Solar Irradiance Is Associated With a Lower Incidence of Coronavirus Disease 2019, Clinical Infectious Diseases, doi:10.1093/cid/ciaa575
May 2020   Source   PDF  
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Analysis of 359 countries and regions showing COVID-19 cases associated with reduced solar irradiance.
Guasp et al., 19 May 2020, peer-reviewed, 3 authors.
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Abstract: Clinical Infectious Diseases BRIEF REPORT Higher Solar Irradiance Is Associated With a Lower Incidence of Coronavirus Disease 2019 Mar Guasp,1,2, Carlos Laredo,2 and Xabier Urra1,2 Neurosciences Unit, Hospital Clinic, Barcelona, Spain, and 2Institut d’Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer, Barcelona, Spain 1 We studied the relationship between the incidence of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), demographical, and climatological measurements in different regions across the world. Lower solar irradiance and higher population density were independent predictors of greater COVID-19 outbreaks. Further studies on the potential protective effect of sunlight over COVID-19 are warranted. Keywords. SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; climatological factors; solar irradiance; incidence.    The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARSCoV-2) causes the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), with varying degrees of illness that include the frequent requirement of mechanical ventilation and high mortality in the elderly. After the initial outbreak in China, it is now causing a pandemic with severe economic and health consequences [1]. The key factors influencing the spread of SARS-CoV-2 are mostly unknown [2]. The higher incidence of COVID-19 cases in inland territories (eg, Wuhan, Lombardy, Madrid), as opposed to coastal territories, suggests that climatological factors might influence the course of the pandemic. This is further supported by the seasonal nature of other betacoronaviruses [3] and by previous research showing that environmental variables, such as high temperatures and high humidity, slowed the influenza spread [4]. Accordingly, some have suggested that COVID-19 will subside with the warmer weather expected in the Northern Hemisphere in the coming months [5], while others claim that the effect of increasing temperatures and humidity during the summer will likely be modest, and not enough to stop transmission [6]. However, until now, the potential utility of sunlight has been largely overlooked. Learning about the factors influencing COVID-19 spreading could help anticipate the extent of its Received 30 March 2020; editorial decision 7 May 2020; accepted 18 May 2020; published online May 19, 2020. Correspondence: X. Urra, Neurosciences Unit, Hospital Clinic, 170 Villarroel, Barcelona 08036, Spain ( Clinical Infectious Diseases®  2020;71(16):2269–71 © The Author(s) 2020. Published by Oxford University Press for the Infectious Diseases Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, e-mail: DOI: 10.1093/cid/ciaa575 consequences and guide governments in the design of mitigation measures worldwide [7]. Here, we studied whether differences in the occurrence of COVID-19 disease are associated with well-defined climatological factors, as well as population density. For this purpose, we correlated the number of COVID-19 cases in the first weeks of the epidemic in each country and region with matching geolocalized information on climatological measurements in the same period. METHODS Information on COVID-19 The datasets on the number of COVID-19–affected persons around the world were obtained from the 2019 Novel Coronavirus COVID-19 Data Repository by the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering and 2 additional repositories for Italy and Spain (Supplementary Materials). The pooled dataset contained geolocalization information and time trends in the number of..
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