Discovery of Emerging Infectious Diseases and Identifying the Risk of Zoonotic Spillovers
Thousands of undiscovered viruses and bacteria are believed to be carried by wildlife, some of which are likely to cross the species barrier and pose threats to human health. A critical first step in understanding these pathogens and the risks they pose to human health is their identification and the characterization of wildlife host-pathogen relationships. Our group participates in virus discovery activities by collecting samples from wildlife in diverse locations, including remote settings such as rural Africa and the Caribbean. These are screened for known and novel viruses and bacteria through conventional diagnostic assays and next-generation sequencing.