Data from: Using sensitivity analysis to identify key factors for the propagation of a plant epidemic
Rimbaud, Loup et al. (2017), Data from: Using sensitivity analysis to identify key factors for the propagation of a plant epidemic, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.b8kb0
Identifying the key factors underlying the spread of a disease is an essential but challenging prerequisite to design management strategies. To tackle this issue, we propose an approach based on sensitivity analyses of a spatiotemporal stochastic model simulating the spread of a plant epidemic. This work is motivated by the spread of sharka, caused by Plum pox virus, in a real landscape. We first carried out a broad-range sensitivity analysis, ignoring any prior information on six epidemiological parameters, to assess their intrinsic influence on model behaviour. A second analysis benefited from the available knowledge on sharka epidemiology and was thus restricted to more realistic values. The broad-range analysis revealed that the mean duration of the latent period is the most influential parameter of the model, whereas the sharka-specific analysis uncovered the strong impact of the connectivity of the first infected orchard. In addition to demonstrating the interest of sensitivity analyses for a stochastic model, this study highlights the impact of variation ranges of target parameters on the outcome of a sensitivity analysis. With regard to sharka management, our results suggest that sharka surveillance may benefit from paying closer attention to highly-connected patches whose infection could trigger serious epidemics.