Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

The relationship between infection with the four major serotypes of dengue virus and the occurrence of different forms of disease is complex and not fully understood. Interpreting longitudinal records of the incidence of serious disease to gain insight into the transmission dynamics and epidemiology of the virus is therefore complicated. Since age reflects duration of exposure, age–stratified, strain–specific serological surveys carried out at one point in time, or over a short time interval, can potentially provide a rich source of information on longitudinal patterns. This paper describes the development and application (to data collected in Thailand) of statistically rigorous methods designed to estimate time–varying, strain–specific forces of infection, and thus basic reproduction numbers, from cross–sectional serological data. The analyses provide support for the hypothesis that antibody– dependent enhancement of transmission influences observed epidemiological pattern. Age–stratified serological data also reveal evidence of a propensity for the annual incidence of infection to oscillate over time with a frequency of several years. The latter observation is consistent with the predictions of simple mathematical models of the transmission dynamics of the virus. The estimates of the basic reproduction numbers obtained are similar in magnitude for each dengue serotype, being in the range of four to six. Such values are higher than those obtained from earlier analyses, and the implications of this for dengue control are discussed.

Original publication




Journal article


Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B: Biological Sciences


The Royal Society

Publication Date





757 - 768