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Discovering disease-causing pathogens in resource-scarce Southeast Asia using a global metagenomic pathogen monitoring system


SignificanceMetagenomic pathogen sequencing offers an unbiased approach to characterizing febrile illness. In resource-scarce settings with high biodiversity, it is critical to identify disease-causing pathogens in order to understand burden and to prioritize efforts for control. Here, metagenomic next-generation sequencing (mNGS) characterization of the pathogen landscape in Cambodia revealed diverse vector-borne and zoonotic pathogens irrespective of age and gender as risk factors. Identification of key pathogens led to changes in national program surveillance. This study is a "real world" example of the use of mNGS surveillance of febrile individuals, executed in-country, to identify outbreaks of vector-borne, zoonotic, and other emerging pathogens in a resource-scarce setting.

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