18. The Second Epidemiologic Transition, Adaptation, and the Evolutionary Paradigm

  1. Molly K. Zuckerman
  1. George J. Armelagos

Published Online: 14 MAR 2014

DOI: 10.1002/9781118504338.ch18

Modern Environments and Human Health: Revisiting the Second Epidemiologic Transition

Modern Environments and Human Health: Revisiting the Second Epidemiologic Transition

How to Cite

Armelagos, G. J. (2014) The Second Epidemiologic Transition, Adaptation, and the Evolutionary Paradigm, in Modern Environments and Human Health: Revisiting the Second Epidemiologic Transition (ed M. K. Zuckerman), John Wiley & Sons, Inc, Oxford. doi: 10.1002/9781118504338.ch18

Editor Information

  1. Department of Anthropology and Middle Eastern Cultures Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS

Author Information

  1. Department of Anthropology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 14 MAR 2014
  2. Published Print: 14 MAY 2014

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781118504208

Online ISBN: 9781118504338

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Keywords:

  • degenerative disease;
  • epidemiologic transition theory;
  • human biological adaptation;
  • noncommunicable diseases (NCDs);
  • second epidemiologic transition (SET);
  • third epidemiologic transition (TET)

Summary

Epidemiologic transition models provide a means to evaluate the evolution of disease and the adaptive response of human populations. Epidemiologic transition theory explains major population-level trends in the profile of human diseases and provides insight into their ultimate causes. This chapter focuses on recognizing and describing the particulars of a given pathogen or other disease risks. It argues that synthesizing such data using epidemiologic transition theory is likely to prove useful to epidemiologists as well. The chapter begins with a discussion on second epidemiologic transition (SET). The SET represents a dramatic shift in the disease profiles of human populations, but is only one of three major changes in human disease trends. In the SET, the introduction of public health measures, medical advances, and improved nutrition was responsible for declining infectious disease mortality and rising degenerative disease mortality.