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Meteorological factors and domestic new cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in nine Asian cities: A time-series analysis

By Zonglin He, Yiqiao Chin, Jian Huang, Yi He, Babatunde O. Akinwunmi, Shinning Yu, Casper J.P. Zhang, Wai-kit Ming

Posted 18 Apr 2020
medRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.04.15.20066613

AIM To investigate the associations of meteorological factors and the daily new cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in nine Asian cities. METHOD Pearson correlation and generalized additive modeling were performed to assess the relationships between daily new COVID-19 cases and meteorological factors (daily average temperature and relative humidity) with the most updated data currently available. RESULTS The Pearson correlation showed that daily new confirmed cases of COVID-19 were more correlated with the average temperature than with relative humidity. Daily new confirmed cases were negatively correlated with the average temperature in Beijing (r=-0.565, P<0.01), Shanghai (r=-0.471, P<0.01), and Guangzhou (r=-0.530, P<0.01) , yet in contrast, positively correlated with that in Japan (r=0.441, P<0.01). In most of the cities (Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Seoul, Tokyo, and Kuala Lumpur), generalized additive modeling analysis showed the number of daily new confirmed cases was positively associated with both average temperature and relative humidity, especially in lagged 3d model, where a positive influence of temperature on the daily new confirmed cases was discerned in 5 cities except in Beijing, Wuhan, Korea, and Malaysia. Nevertheless, the results were inconsistent across cities and lagged time, suggesting meteorological factors were unlikely to greatly influence the COVID-19 epidemic. CONCLUSION The associations between meteorological factors and the number of COVID-19 daily cases are inconsistent across cities and lagged time. Large-scale public health measures and expanded regional research are still required until a vaccine becomes available and herd immunity is established.

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