Today: Of Mice and Men – Emerging Infectious Disease in a Warmer, More Fragmented World

Today February 4 at 4:00pm in UConn’s Konover Auditorium, the Edwin Way Teale Lecture Series on Nature and the Environment presents disease ecologist Dr. Richard S. Ostfeld of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies for his lecture  “Of Mice and Men: Emerging Infectious Disease in a Warmer, More Fragmented World.”

ostfeldWe are living in an age of emerging infectious diseases, scientists and health officials agree.  Most of these diseases are transmitted from wildlife to humans, but scientists are only beginning to understand the ecological causes of disease emergence in the 21st Century.  In this talk, Ostfeld will describe the ecology of three emerging tick-borne diseases in the northeastern United States, most prominently Lyme disease.  He will show how small mammals, such as white-footed mice, are instrumental in fostering both blacklegged ticks and the pathogens they transmit.

More than 20 years of ecological research in Ostfeld’s lab reveal how anthropogenic environmental changes, such as reduced biodiversity and global warming, affect our risk of exposure to infectious diseases both locally and globally.  The presentation will demonstrate the importance of ecology as a health science.

Co-sponsored by UConn’s Junior Faculty Forum of the Humanities Institute, the Dodd Research Center, and several UConn departments, the event is free and open to the public.

Since 1995, UConn presents the award-winning Edwin Way Teale Lecture Series that brings distinguished speakers to the University to speak in public lectures on various aspects of nature and the environment.  The Lecture Series is named in honor of the Pulitzer-prize winning naturalist and author, Edwin Way Teale, whose vast archive of literary manuscripts, letters, diaries and photographs is preserved and accessible at UConn’s Archives and Special Collections.

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