Variation in tick behavior affects geographic variation in Lyme disease risk
Jean I. Tsao, PhD
Department of Fisheries and Wildlife
Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences
Michigan State University
With more than 300,000 human cases estimated a year, Lyme disease is the leading vector-borne disease in the United States. Over the last fifteen years, I have had the opportunity to work in different regions where Lyme disease is hyperendemic, invading, or predominantly cryptic. Studying the blacklegged tick and Lyme disease pathogen across such varied habitats and in different stages of establishment has given me a great appreciation for the ecological “flexibility” of the tick and bacterium, the complex roles that biotic and abiotic factors play in influencing disease risk, and the ecology and evolution of ticks and tick-borne pathogens. Additionally, the biologically complex nature of disease and the socially complex medical nature of Lyme disease have allowed me to recognize the great need for improved communication among scientists, health practitioners, patients, and the public. As such, the Lyme disease system provides an apt opportunity to conduct research in the frameworks of One Health and Conservation Medicine. My lab works closely with colleagues in public health at both the state and federal levels. I am part of the CDC-funded Midwestern Center of Excellence for Vector Biology. Besides Lyme disease I also work on other ticks and tick borne pathogens, which similarly continue to expand geographically and result in emerging disease.
Wednesday, September 25, 2019 at 12:00 PM
2506 Veterinary Medicine Basic Sciences Building
2001 South Lincoln Avenue, Urbana
For more information contact the Department of Pathobiology at 217-333-2449, email email@example.com.