CEID-IDEAS Member Retreat 2019

The CEID will partner with the IDEAS Training Program for our annual member retreat, to be held Tuesday May 7th at the State Botanical Garden of Georgia.  Please contact tross312@uga.edu with questions/concerns or RSVP here


9:00AM – Welcome with Coffee & Pastries

9:10AM – CEID Business Update

9:30AM – Nature Walk led by Richard Hall

10:15AM – Reconvene at the Administration Building

10:20AM – Student Presentation by Claire Teitelbaum, “Animal movement and infectious disease in changing landscapes”

Abstract: Animal movements are important for the transmission and spread of infectious diseases. Evidence from migratory species shows that migration can promote the spatial spread of infection and expose migrants to diverse pathogens, but it can also decrease pathogen prevalence via migratory escape and culling. Currently, human habitat modifications are changing animal movement patterns, with potential implications for these movement-related mechanisms of pathogen transmission. However, not all animals are migratory; nomadic animals travel long distances, but in an irregular, non-seasonal pattern that differs from seasonal migration. Nomadism is widespread geographically and taxonomically, so it is important to understand whether the patterns and mechanisms that are established for migrants also apply to nomads. In this talk, I will discuss results from macroecological and mechanistic modeling studies of the relationships between nomadism, infectious disease dynamics, and habitat modifications. 

10:50AM – Faculty Member Presentation by Liliana Salvador, “Understanding the emergence and evolution of Mycobacterium bovis in Michigan, USA”

Abstract: Bovine tuberculosis (bTB) caused by Mycobacterium bovis was recognized to be a problem in Michigan since 1994. Infection has been found in multiple wildlife and livestock populations. Identifying the roles of different species in the transmission of bTB and how it spread across space are challenging and understudied problems, mostly because of the difficulty of observing wildlife. Here, I use an evolutionary context to address these questions in an exceptionally rich dataset via an unusual combination of spatial and temporal information about the wildlife host populations, and dense, high-resolution bacterial sequence data. By providing insights into reservoir status and bacterial migratory patterns, genomic analyses such as these can refine our understanding of fine scale transmission patterns beyond the capabilities of traditional epidemiological methods, helping to target surveillance and control. 

11:20AM – Guest Presentation by Professor Jaap de Roode (Emory), “Effects of plant toxins on monarch butterfly infection, immunity and the gut microbiome”

Abstract: Parasites pose major threats to their hosts’ fitness, and hosts can protect themselves against infection through innate immune responses, anti-infection behaviors and microbial defenses. Monarch butterflies are specialist feeders of milkweed host plant species, which vary in their toxicity of secondary chemicals called cardenolides. Monarchs are commonly infected with a protozoan parasite, and infected females preferentially lay their eggs on high-cardenolide species of milkweed, which reduce infection in their offspring. While previous work suggests that these cardenolides directly interfere with parasite infection, current studies also indicate that milkweeds alter the monarch gut microbiome, and that the altered microbiome contributes to parasite resistance. I will summarize the anti-parasitic behaviors of monarchs and the role of the microbiome in determining parasite resistance, and also summarize studies on the effects of cardenolides on monarch innate immunity.

Noon – Mediterranean Buffet Lunch (Dondero’s Kitchen)

12:45PM – Poster Session

1:15PM – IDEAS Student Presentations from Kaylee Arnold, Paige Miller, Darren Seidel, and David Vasquez 

2:15PM – Professional Development Breakout Sessions (Choose One)

  • Submitting to Prestigious Journals (John Drake)
  • Professional Networking Skills & Post-PhD Job Search (Sonia Altizer)

3:15PM – Wrap Up & Event Ends