My research focus is the epidemiology and ecology of enteric and environmentally
transmitted pathogens in animal and human populations. I combine data, epidemiological
analysis and mathematical models to study transmission mechanisms, and to identify and
design control measures to reduce the public health burden associated with pathogens. My
research spans a range of enteric pathogen-host systems including foodborne pathogens in
farm animals, and health-care associated diseases in humans. Current projects include: 

• Transmission of Shiga-toxigenic Escherichia coli in cattle 

• Clostridium difficile dynamics within patient, hospital, and health-care networks 

• Dissemination and mitigation of antimicrobial resistance in enteric bacteria 

In addition to epidemiological modeling, my research has involved the development of
mathematical models to address nutrient supply and excretion at the animal level. 

I teach infectious disease modeling, epidemiology and evidence-based medicine in the
veterinary and graduate programs. 

The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) provides
funding opportunities for postdoctoral fellowships, sabbatical fellowships, and short
term visitors (for more details visit www.nimbios.org). 

Articles

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Effectiveness of screening hospital admissions to detect asymptomatic carriers of Clostridium difficile: a modeling evaluation (with Erik Dubberke), Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology (2014)

Objective Both asymptomatic and symptomatic C. difficile carriers contribute to new colonizations and infections within...

 

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Highly dynamic animal contact network and implications on disease transmission (with Shi Chen, Brad J. White, Michael W. Sanderson, David E. Amrine, and Amiyaal Ilany), Nature Scientific Reports (2014)

Contact patterns among hosts are considered as one of the most critical factors contributing to...

 

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Temporal-spatial heterogeneity in animal-environment contact: implications for the exposure and transmission of pathogens (with Shi Chen, Michael Sanderson, Brad White, and David Amrine), Nature Scientific Reports (2013)

Contact structure, a critical driver of infectious disease transmission, is not completely understood and characterized...

 

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Evaluating targets for control of plasmid-mediated antimicrobial resistance in enteric commensals of beef cattle: a modelling approach (with V V. Volkova, Z Lu, and Y Grohn), Epidemiology and Infection (2013)

Enteric commensal bacteria of food animals may serve as a reservoir of genes encoding antimicrobial...

 

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Evaluation of the “Iceberg phenomenon” in Johne's disease through mathematical modelling (with Gesham Magombedze and Calistus Ngonghala), Plos One (2013)

Johne's disease (JD) is a chronic, enteric disease in ruminants caused by Mycobacterium avium subsp....

 

Presentations

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Modeling antimicrobial resistance in farm animal populations, 2011 Meeting of the Dutch Society for Veterinary Epidemiology and Economics 2011 (2011)