Associate Professor, lab rat (microbiologist/infectious disease epidemiologist) and occasional blogger, full-time nerd

Student guest post by Kyle Malter In many areas of the country there is a vile blood sucker that lurks in our forests, our parks and even our backyards.  What concerns us is not what this creature takes but rather what it leaves in our body after it bites us:  corkscrew shaped bacteria called spirochetes…

Student guest post by Julia Wiederholt I don’t think there is a single person that can claim to have never had the joyous experience (sarcasm intended) of suffering from the influenza.  We all recognize the common symptoms that accompany this infectious little virus taking up residence in our bodies: the chills accompanying a fever, the…

Student guest post by Brandon Woods A Dangerous Paradise From jungles with jaguars to crystal blue lakes with freshwater sharks, Nicaragua is one of the most beautiful and dangerous countries in Central America. The brilliant biodiversity attracts millions of tourists each year and the looming volcanoes that pepper the landscape can be an exciting yet…

Student guest post by Carrie Ellsworth During the summer of 2010 I spent two months in Ghana studying a parasite called schistosomiasis. We worked in a small town called Adasawase to determine prevalence and treat the schoolchildren who were infected. We were told that schistosomiasis was not a major health concern for the people in…

Student guest post by Molly Stafne Nothing could be worse than watching your seven-year-old lying in a hospital bed fighting for his life after being diagnosed with hemolytic uremic syndrome. Unfortunately, Mary McGonigle-Martin experienced it first hand as her son, Chris, fought for his life after being poisoned by E. coli 0157:H7 found in contaminated…

Student guest post by Naomi Kirschenbaum Although we can never know, there are estimates in the range of 15,000 displaced pets in the wake of 2005 Hurricane Katrina.  Many of the dogs found their way to shelters and homes in our community around the Monterey Bay in California.  As a local veterinarian the most notable…

Student guest post by Jack Hamersky After successfully completing a job interview I had the opportunity to take the next step in my employment process: taking a Tuberculosis or TB test.  I have received the test before but never really understood the point of testing for a disease no one ever sees in my community.…

Years like this are rough on blogging. As previously noted, I teach an every-other-year spring course on infection and chronic disease. Well, every summer I also teach an intensive course (basically a semester crammed into a week) on the topic of applied infectious disease epidemiology: taking what’s known about ID epi and learning how to…

It’s time for this year’s second installment of student guest posts for my class on infectious causes of chronic disease. Fifth one this year is by Nai-Chung Chang.  Of the many health problems that everyone is bound to have at some point, influenza, or just “the flu,” is one of the most prominent. In fact, we call…

It’s time for this year’s second installment of student guest posts for my class on infectious causes of chronic disease. Fourth one this round is by Kristen Coleman.  If you are anything like me, you have been told countless reasons over the years why we must watch what we eat, keep our cholesterol intake down, and try…