Undiscovered bat hosts of Filoviruses

Ebola and other filoviruses pose significant public health and conservation threats by causing high mortality in primates, including humans. Preventing future outbreaks of ebolavirus depends on identifying wildlife reservoirs, but extraordinarily high biodiversity of potential hosts in temporally dynamic environments of equatorial Africa contributes to sporadic, unpredictable outbreaks that have hampered efforts to identify wild reservoirs for nearly 40 years. Using a machine learning algorithm, generalized boosted regression, we characterize potential filovirus-positive bat species with estimated 87% accuracy.

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