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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: INTEGRATED BIOSYSTEMATICS AND TAXONOMY FOR PARASITES AMONG UNGULATES AND OTHER VERTEBRATES Title: Integrated Approaches and Empirical Models for Investigation of Parasitic Disease in Nothern Wildlife

Authors
item Hoberg, Eric
item Polley, Lydden - SASKATOON, SK, CANADA
item Jenkins, Emily - SASKATOON, SK, CANADA
item Kutz, Susan - CALGARY CANADA
item Veitch, Alasdair - CANADA
item Elkin, Brett - YELLOWKNIFE NT CANADA

Submitted to: Emerging Infectious Diseases
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: November 4, 2007
Publication Date: January 1, 2008
Citation: Hoberg, E.P., Polley, L., Jenkins, E.J., Kutz, S.J., Veitch, A., Elkin, B. 2008. Integrated Approaches and Empirical Models for Investigation of Parasitic Disease in Northern Wildlife. Emerging Infectious Diseases. 14:10-17.

Interpretive Summary: Responses by complex host-parasite systems in a regime of changing climate and global warming must be understood if effective strategies are to be developed for prediction, detection and mitigation of emerging infectious diseases (EID). Few model systems exist, and the value of integrative studies has yet to be widely adopted. Research by a broad base of collaborators in government and academic labs in the US and Canada represents one of the first relatively long-term programs exploring the interaction of climate and EID in an empirical and theoretical framework at high latitudes in North America. The North serves as a natural laboratory to explore emerging infectious diseases (EID) and large scale drivers influencing distribution, host associations and evolution of pathogens among people, domestic animals and wildlife. We outline approaches, protocols and empirical models derived from a decade of integrated research on northern host-parasite systems, leading into the International Polar years of 2007-2008. Investigations of EID incorporated extensive survey for parasites with archival collections, historical processes and determinants of diversity, and experimental approaches in laboratory and field studies exploring the interface for hosts, parasites and the environment. New protostrongylid nematodes (e.g., Umingmakstrongylus pallikuukensis and a recently recognized new genus and species similar to Varestrongylus) and broadened host and geographic distributions for previously known parasites (e.g., Parelaphostrongylus andersoni, P. odocoilei and Protostrongylus stilesi) were discovered. Emergence was linked to processes for geographic expansion, host switching and resurgence of parasites due to climate change. The issue of geographic expansion and breakdown of mechanisms for ecological isolation is significant, as this is expected to change the interface for parasitism between wild ungulates and domestic sheep at the interface of natural and managed ecosystems. Integrative approaches demonstrated in these studies are a general model and serve as cornerstones for prediction, detection and mitigation of EID in wild and domestic ungulates from North America and elsewhere under a regime of changing global climate.

Technical Abstract: The North serves as a natural laboratory to explore emerging infectious diseases (EID) and large scale drivers influencing distribution, host associations and evolution of pathogens among people, domestic animals and wildlife. We outline approaches, protocols and empirical models derived from a decade of integrated research on northern host-parasite systems, leading into the International Polar years of 2007-2008. Investigations of EID in northern ungulates involved a network of collaborators, and incorporated extensive survey for parasites with archival collections, historical foundations for diversity, and laboratory and field studies exploring the interface for hosts, parasites and the environment. New protostrongylid nematodes and broadened host and geographic distributions for previously known parasites were discovered. Emergence was linked to processes for geographic expansion, host switching and resurgence due to climate change. Integrative approaches serve as cornerstones for prediction, detection and mitigation of EID in the North and elsewhere under a regime of changing global climate.

Last Modified: 9/2/2014