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CAREER:Assessing impacts of enhanced climatic variability and extreme natural events on environmental sustainability of water in fostering disease resilient public health


This CAREER project seeks to understand impacts of extreme natural events and increased climatic variability on the spread of water-borne pathogens. Spatial and temporal satellite data will be used extensively to create models that predict the distribution of pathogenic cholera bacteria. The overall scientific objective is to determine risk of disease outbreaks in regions where increased climatic variability coincides with extreme natural events. Specific educational and outreach objectives include: (i) developing an environmental sustainability curriculum within West Virginia University; (ii) actively recruiting and training minority and underrepresented group students in research; (iii) developing an environmental visualization programming curriculum for middle/high school students.<br/><br/>The research is targeted to provide a quantitative baseline framework, potentially applicable on global scales, to assess occurrence and spread of pathogens in the environment and human population. The intent is to aid preparation of disease mitigation strategies by policymakers, aid organizations, and governmental health agencies. The computational infrastructure developed through this research will be made available to a wide array of students who have interest in public health, climate modeling, and hydroclimatology.<br/><br/>This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

Antarpreet Jutla
West Virginia University
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