Viral Pathogen Discovery Network: Identifying and Characterizing Novel Viruses Among Patients with Pneumonia
PI - Dr. Gayani Tillekeratne,
Division of Infectious Diseases and the Duke Global Health Institute, Duke University
Dr. Gregory Gray,
Division of Infectious Diseases, University of Texas Medical Branch
Dr. Benjamin Anderson, Duke Kunshan University, Kunshan, China

During the last 25 years the world has experienced the emergence and spread of a number of novel respiratory viruses including Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) in 2003 and 2004, and now SARS-CoV-19. Similarly, in 2009, a triple reassortment H1N1 swine-like influenza virus emerged in Mexico, and quickly spread throughout the world. While these novel emergent respiratory viruses are from different families, they have one thing in common, they are thought to have originated in animal and crossed over to infect man. While a variety of risk factors associated with emerging respiratory viruses have been study, the risk factors for specific viruses are complex; however, they tend to be found in densely populated geographic areas of high emerging infectious disease risk and are also often correlated with live animal markets and industrialized farming.

The primary aim of the study is to identify and characterize viruses and determine risk factors associated with pneumonia among patients admitted to participating hospitals in Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Kenya, China, and Vietnam. Teams at collaborating institutions will enroll and collect nasopharyngeal (NP) swab and conduct qualitative surveys to determine risk factors associated with pneumonia. NP swab samples will be studied with molecular assays, virus culture, and when appropriate by sequencing, to characterize viruses. We will also study the laboratory results with their linked questionnaire data with a goal of identifying potential risk factors for pneumonia hospitalization

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