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Unraveling the Transmission Ecology of Polio

Overview of attention for article published in PLoS Biology, June 2015
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (99th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (87th percentile)

Mentioned by

20 news outlets
3 blogs
133 tweeters
7 Facebook pages


50 Dimensions

Readers on

113 Mendeley
Unraveling the Transmission Ecology of Polio
Published in
PLoS Biology, June 2015
DOI 10.1371/journal.pbio.1002172
Pubmed ID

Micaela Martinez-Bakker, Aaron A. King, Pejman Rohani


Sustained and coordinated vaccination efforts have brought polio eradication within reach. Anticipating the eradication of wild poliovirus (WPV) and the subsequent challenges in preventing its re-emergence, we look to the past to identify why polio rose to epidemic levels in the mid-20th century, and how WPV persisted over large geographic scales. We analyzed an extensive epidemiological dataset, spanning the 1930s to the 1950s and spatially replicated across each state in the United States, to glean insight into the drivers of polio's historical expansion and the ecological mode of its persistence prior to vaccine introduction. We document a latitudinal gradient in polio's seasonality. Additionally, we fitted and validated mechanistic transmission models to data from each US state independently. The fitted models revealed that: (1) polio persistence was the product of a dynamic mosaic of source and sink populations; (2) geographic heterogeneity of seasonal transmission conditions account for the latitudinal structure of polio epidemics; (3) contrary to the prevailing "disease of development" hypothesis, our analyses demonstrate that polio's historical expansion was straightforwardly explained by demographic trends rather than improvements in sanitation and hygiene; and (4) the absence of clinical disease is not a reliable indicator of polio transmission, because widespread polio transmission was likely in the multiyear absence of clinical disease. As the world edges closer to global polio eradication and continues the strategic withdrawal of the Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV), the regular identification of, and rapid response to, these silent chains of transmission is of the utmost importance.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 133 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 113 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United States 5 4%
Portugal 1 <1%
France 1 <1%
Israel 1 <1%
Brazil 1 <1%
Saudi Arabia 1 <1%
United Kingdom 1 <1%
Unknown 102 90%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Researcher 26 23%
Student > Master 19 17%
Student > Ph. D. Student 16 14%
Student > Bachelor 14 12%
Professor 5 4%
Other 22 19%
Unknown 11 10%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 30 27%
Medicine and Dentistry 26 23%
Environmental Science 8 7%
Nursing and Health Professions 6 5%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 5 4%
Other 16 14%
Unknown 22 19%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 250. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 26 July 2022.
All research outputs
of 22,579,714 outputs
Outputs from PLoS Biology
of 6,350 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 247,901 outputs
Outputs of similar age from PLoS Biology
of 71 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 22,579,714 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 99th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 6,350 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 54.9. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 95% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 247,901 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 71 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done well, scoring higher than 87% of its contemporaries.