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USGS - science for a changing world

Katherine F. Smith

Infectious disease is listed among the top five causes of global species extinctions. However, the majority of available data supporting this contention is largely anecdotal. We used the IUCN Red List of Threatened and Endangered Species and literature indexed in the ISI Web of Science to assess the role of infectious disease in global species loss. Infectious disease was listed as a contributing factor in <4% of species extinctions known to have occurred since 1500 (833 plants and animals) and as contributing to a species' status as critically endangered in <8% of cases (2852 critically endangered plants and animals). Although infectious diseases appear to play a minor role in global species loss, our findings...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Conservation Biology
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