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dc.contributor.authorRomero-Alvarez, Daniel
dc.contributor.authorPeterson, A. Townsend
dc.contributor.authorSalzer, Johanna S.
dc.contributor.authorPittiglio, Claudia
dc.contributor.authorShadomy, Sean
dc.contributor.authorTraxler, Rita
dc.contributor.authorVieira, Antonio R.
dc.contributor.authorBower, William A.
dc.contributor.authorWalke, Henry
dc.contributor.authorCampbell, Lindsay P.
dc.date.accessioned2022-09-15T18:24:03Z
dc.date.available2022-09-15T18:24:03Z
dc.date.issued2020-05-09
dc.identifier.citationRomero-Alvarez D, Peterson AT, Salzer JS, Pittiglio C, Shadomy S, Traxler R, et al. (2020) Potential distributions of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus cereus biovar anthracis causing anthrax in Africa. PLoS Negl Trop Dis 14(3): e0008131. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0008131en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1808/33483
dc.description.abstractBackground Bacillus cereus biovar anthracis (Bcbva) is an emergent bacterium closely related to Bacillus anthracis, the etiological agent of anthrax. The latter has a worldwide distribution and usually causes infectious disease in mammals associated with savanna ecosystems. Bcbva was identified in humid tropical forests of Côte d’Ivoire in 2001. Here, we characterize the potential geographic distributions of Bcbva in West Africa and B. anthracis in sub-Saharan Africa using an ecological niche modeling approach.

Methodology/Principal findings Georeferenced occurrence data for B. anthracis and Bcbva were obtained from public data repositories and the scientific literature. Combinations of temperature, humidity, vegetation greenness, and soils values served as environmental variables in model calibrations. To predict the potential distribution of suitable environments for each pathogen across the study region, parameter values derived from the median of 10 replicates of the best-performing model for each pathogen were used. We found suitable environments predicted for B. anthracis across areas of confirmed and suspected anthrax activity in sub-Saharan Africa, including an east-west corridor from Ethiopia to Sierra Leone in the Sahel region and multiple areas in eastern, central, and southern Africa. The study area for Bcbva was restricted to West and Central Africa to reflect areas that have likely been accessible to Bcbva by dispersal. Model predicted values indicated potential suitable environments within humid forested environments. Background similarity tests in geographic space indicated statistical support to reject the null hypothesis of similarity when comparing environments associated with B. anthracis to those of Bcbva and when comparing humidity values and soils values individually. We failed to reject the null hypothesis of similarity when comparing environments associated with Bcbva to those of B. anthracis, suggesting that additional investigation is needed to provide a more robust characterization of the Bcbva niche.

Conclusions/Significance This study represents the first time that the environmental and geographic distribution of Bcbva has been mapped. We document likely differences in ecological niche—and consequently in geographic distribution—between Bcbva and typical B. anthracis, and areas of possible co-occurrence between the two. We provide information crucial to guiding and improving monitoring efforts focused on these pathogens.
en_US
dc.publisherPublic Library of Scienceen_US
dc.rightsThis is an open access article, free of all copyright, and may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose. The work is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication.en_US
dc.rights.urihttps://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/en_US
dc.titlePotential distributions of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus cereus biovar anthracis causing anthrax in Africaen_US
dc.typeArticleen_US
kusw.kuauthorRomero-Alvarez, Daniel
kusw.kuauthorPeterson, A. Townsend
kusw.kudepartmentEcology & Evolutionary Biologyen_US
kusw.kudepartmentBiodiversity Instituteen_US
dc.identifier.doi10.1371/journal.pntd.0008131en_US
dc.identifier.orcidhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-6762-6046en_US
dc.identifier.orcidhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-7580-4116en_US
kusw.oaversionScholarly/refereed, publisher versionen_US
kusw.oapolicyThis item meets KU Open Access policy criteria.en_US
dc.rights.accessrightsopenAccessen_US


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This is an open access article, free of all copyright, and may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose. The work is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication.
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as: This is an open access article, free of all copyright, and may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose. The work is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication.