About 75% of all novel infections are zoonotic—that is, they are transferred between animal species and humans. We are currently in the midst of a pandemic that originally began as an animal virus, and has now spread among humans. However, this isn’t our first zoonotic pandemic; likely every influenza pandemic originated first in animals, and HIV also has its origins in a non-human primate species. How and why do these pathogens emerge, and what can we do to understand and prevent them in the future?
This month’s Science Café Cleveland event will feature Tara Smith, professor of epidemiology at Kent State University’s College of Public Health, and whose research generally focuses on zoonotic infections.
Smith was the first to identify livestock-associated strains of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in the United States, and has pioneered the investigation of this organism in the US.
During the next Science Cafe Cleveland event, Smith will will present “Zoonotic Infections: How Can We Prepare for the Next Pandemic?” Monday, Sept. 14, at 7 p.m. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Science Café Cleveland will be online this month.