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  1. Even as novel technologies emerge and medicines advance, pathogen-transmitting mosquitoes pose a deadly and accelerating public health threat. Detecting and mitigating the spread of Anopheles stephensi in Africa is now critical to the fight against malaria, as this invasive mosquito poses urgent and unprecedented risks to the continent. Unlike typical African vectors of malaria, An. stephensi breeds in both natural and artificial water reservoirs, and flourishes in urban environments. With An. stephensi beginning to take hold in heavily populated settings, citizen science surveillance supported by novel artificial intelligence (AI) technologies may offer impactful opportunities to guide public health decisions and community-based interventions. Coalitions like the Global Mosquito Alert Consortium (GMAC) and our freely available digital products can be incorporated into enhanced surveillance of An. stephensi and other vector-borne public health threats. By connecting local citizen science networks with global databases that are findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (FAIR), we are leveraging a powerful suite of tools and infrastructure for the early detection of, and rapid response to, (re)emerging vectors and diseases. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available October 17, 2024
  2. Abstract

    All animals carry specialized microbiomes, and their gut microbiota are continuously released into the environment through excretion of waste. Here we propose themeta-gutas a novel conceptual framework that addresses the ability of the gut microbiome released from an animal to function outside the host and alter biogeochemical processes mediated by microbes. We demonstrate this dynamic in the hippopotamus (hippo) and the pools they inhabit. We used natural field gradients and experimental approaches to examine fecal and pool water microbial communities and aquatic biogeochemistry across a range of hippo inputs. Sequencing using 16S RNA methods revealed community coalescence between hippo gut microbiomes and the active microbial communities in hippo pools that received high inputs of hippo feces. The shared microbiome between the hippo gut and the waters into which they excrete constitutes ameta-gutsystem that could influence the biogeochemistry of recipient ecosystems and provide a reservoir of gut microbiomes that could influence other hosts. We propose thatmeta-gutdynamics may also occur where other animal species congregate in high densities, particularly in aquatic environments.

     
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  3. null (Ed.)