• Susanne ModrowEmail author
  • Dietrich Falke
  • Uwe Truyen
  • Hermann Schätzl
Reference work entry


The term “epidemiology” was originally used for the science of major, humanity-threatening diseases. Today, it refers to the science of all transmissible and non-transmissible diseases in a population, irrespective of whether they occur frequently in time or space. In the field of microbiology, epidemiology deals with diseases which are caused by transmissible agents such as bacteria, viruses or prions, and in particular with the spread and consequences of infections. Therefore, epidemiological studies are very important for the health of the world population, and are the basis for general and veterinary measures such as quarantine or vaccinations to prevent and control pandemics and epidemics. Furthermore, they allow the development of guidelines and regulations for vaccinations and other measures that prevent infections.


Human Immunodeficiency Virus Influenza Virus Avian Influenza Rabies Virus Bovine Leukaemia Virus 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Further Reading

  1. Behbehani AM (1988) The smallpox story in words and pictures. University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas CityGoogle Scholar
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Susanne Modrow
    • 1
    Email author
  • Dietrich Falke
    • 2
  • Uwe Truyen
    • 3
  • Hermann Schätzl
    • 4
  1. 1.Inst. Medizinische, Mikrobiologie und HygieneUniversität RegensburgRegensburgGermany
  2. 2.MainzGermany
  3. 3.Veterinärmedizinische Fak., Inst. Tierhygiene undUniversität LeipzigLeipzigGermany
  4. 4.Helmholtz Zentrum München, Institut für VirologieTU MünchenMunichGermany

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