2007 CIDD - CCE Disease Symposium

The Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics and the Center for Chemical Ecology sponsored a joint symposium on chemical signaling and host--vector dynamics on January 25, 2007, here at PSU.  The Abstract and list of speakers follows.


A Rose by Any Other Name: Chemical Signaling and Host--Vector Dynamics

ABSTRACT  A key challenge in understanding the dynamics of infectious diseases at the population scale is the complexity of the interactions between hosts and vectors that result in disease transmission. Recently, the field of chemical ecology has made strong advances in characterizing how interactions among individuals (both within and between species) are mediated by chemical signaling. These developments provide us with a mechanism to study the interactions among individuals as they pertain to the potential spread of parasites. In particular, arthropod foraging is strongly affected by the hosts' chemical profile, which has implications for the transmission of vectored parasites. Variation in chemical profiles due to genotype or environmental conditions may result in heterogeneities in encounter rates with vectors and the resulting incidence of disease. In addition, Chemical signaling is plastic and may change in response to parasite infection. This may further impact the parasite transmissibility due to attraction to or avoidance of infected hosts. It remains to be seen how these interactions between hosts and vectors will affect dynamical patterns at the population  level. Using a combination of chemical and behavioral methods with population scale epidemiology provides a unique opportunity to study the effects of chemical signaling on heterogeneities in parasite transmission. This approach allows us to focus on the novel question of how pathogens impact host--vector interactions via chemical signaling. Bringing together the expertise the Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics and The Center for Chemical Ecology, Penn State is uniquely poised to address these questions. We are proposing an internal meeting between these two groups to foster discussion about common interests and the potential for collaborative grants.

Speakers and Titles


Irmgard Seidl-Adams: PCR, A Versatile Method for Multiple Applications
Tom Baker: Behavioral and Neurophysiological Techniques for Discovering Semiochemicals of Use against Insect Vectors
Tracy Conklin: Aphids and the Luteoviridae: Vector Attraction
Eleca Dunham: Underlying Patterns of Differential Transmission in the Family Flaviviridae
Matt Ferrari: Statistical Models for Detecting Vector Biased Transmission
Diana Cox-Foster:
Mark Mescher:
Andy Stephenson:
Volatile-Mediated Exposure to Bacterial Wilt Disease in Cucurbita pepo
John Tooker: Field-Based Methods in Chemical Ecology
Jim Tumlinson: A Brief Discussion of Methods for Collecting Volatile Organic Compounds