Spreading dynamics in a cattle trade network: Size, speed, typical profile and consequences on epidemic control strategies

Abstract : Infections can spread among livestock notably because infected animals can be brought to uncontaminated holdings, therefore exposing a new group of susceptible animals to the disease. As a consequence, the structure and dynamics of animal trade networks is a major focus of interest to control zoonosis. We investigate the impact of the chronology of animal trades on the dynamics of the process. Precisely, in the context of a basic SI model spreading , we measure on the French database of bovine transfers to what extent a snapshot-based analysis of the cattle trade networks overestimates the epidemic risks. We bring into light that an analysis taking into account the chronology of interactions would give a much more accurate assessment of both the size and speed of the process. For this purpose, we model data as a temporal network that we analyze using the link stream formalism in order to mix structural and temporal aspects. We also show that in this dataset, a basic SI spreading comes down in most cases to a simple two-phases scenario: a waiting period, with few contacts and low activity, followed by a linear growth of the number of infected holdings. Using this portrait of the spreading process, we identify efficient strategies to control a potential outbreak, based on the identification of specific elements of the link stream which have a higher probability to be involved in a spreading process.
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Aurore Payen, Lionel Tabourier, Matthieu Latapy. Spreading dynamics in a cattle trade network: Size, speed, typical profile and consequences on epidemic control strategies. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2019, 14 (6), pp.e0217972. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0217972⟩. ⟨hal-02165650⟩

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