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Journal Articles EcoHealth Year : 2010

Pathocenosis: A Holistic Approach to Disease Ecology

J-P. Gonzalez
  • Function : Author
J-S. Guitton
  • Function : Author
P. Vidal
  • Function : Author
N. Bahi-Jaber
  • Function : Author
H. Louzir
  • Function : Author
D. Pontier


The History of medicine describes the emergence and recognition of infectious diseases, and human attempts to stem them. It also throws light on the role of changing environmental conditions on disease emergence/re-emergence, establishment and, sometimes, disappearance. However, the dynamics of infectious diseases is also influenced by the relationships between the community of interacting infectious agents present at a given time in a given territory, a concept that Mirko Grmek, an historian of medicine, conceptualized with the word "pathocenosis". The spatial and temporal evolution of diseases, when observed at the appropriate scales, illustrates how a change in the pathocenosis, whether of "natural" or anthropic origin, can lead to the emergence and spread of diseases.

Dates and versions

hal-00697892 , version 1 (16-05-2012)



J-P. Gonzalez, M. Guiserix, F. Sauvage, J-S. Guitton, P. Vidal, et al.. Pathocenosis: A Holistic Approach to Disease Ecology. EcoHealth, 2010, 7 (2), pp.237-241. ⟨10.1007/s10393-010-0326-x⟩. ⟨hal-00697892⟩
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