Introduction
Evolutionary Health
Co-Evolution of Disease & Living Conditions
Diabetes
Malaria
Health Effects
What is Risk?
Environmental Risk
Risk Assessment
Risk Abatement
Risk Perception
Risk Management
Uncertainty & Other Features of Risk Assessment
Precautionary Principle
Appendix 1: Contaminants
Appendix 2: Environmnet & Reproductive Health
Exercises
Internet Links
Other Resources
Health & Risk System PDF
Printer-Friendly Web Version

Co-Evolution of Disease and Living Conditions:
Case Studies

The evidence for the relationship between evolution and differing rates in pervasive diseases and adaptation has been pieced together by epidemiologists and other health scientists based on genetic, linguistic, archeological, and anthropological evidence. So there is some uncertainty. Now with genetic tests to discover similarities between apparently diverse populations, models of disease and health are becoming more robust. Still, differentiating between the effects of genes and of the environment is difficult. Usually, it is a combination. The genetic susceptibility may be dormant till an environmental factor triggers it, resulting in the disease. We discuss two cases briefly to show the intricacy, and the times involved in the changing patterns. One reason for doing this is to bring to our attention how long-term and significant the consequences of low-level but relevant exposure to environmental agents may be.

 

Exercise:

AIDS is a deadly disease that emerged among humans recently. Track the origins and the spread of the AIDS virus.

 

 

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  ©Copyright 2003 Carnegie Mellon University
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number 9653194. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.