Hidden zoonoses - uncovering new pathogenic agents from wildlife (2021–2024)

Číslo projektu NU21-05-00143
I. číslo G431
Období 1. 5. 2021 — 31. 12. 2024

Current situation concerning COVID-19 pandemic is an important reminder that discovering new pathogens in wild vertebrates and quickly determining their pathogenic potential is a key element to reduce global health hazards. Since wildlife reservoirs play a major role in the maintenance and spread of emerging zoonoses, uncovering novel pathogens from wildlife remains to be a highly challenging research topic on a global scale. We aim at revealing the diversity of a broad spectrum of viral and bacterial agents with zoonotic potential (in their arthropod and vertebrate vectors/hosts) in local ecosystems. The main innovation of this project is combination of state-of-the-art molecular methods with traditional cultivation, which allows highthroughput wide range screening and in-depth genetic characterization. We aim to isolate viable microorganisms and characterize their biological properties in detail, including potential pathogenicity and transmission to vertebrates. Project has ambition to address emerging health threats coming from wildlife, which are often driven by globalization.