Publications

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dynamics of plague in a gunnison's prairie dog colony complex from new mexico.a plague (yersinia pestis) epizootic spread through gunnison's prairie dogs (cynomys gunnisoni), and possibly other rodent species, in the moreno valley in north-central new mexico between winter 1984-1985 and autumn 1987. we observed the progress of the epizootic and subsequent population recovery at four prairie dog towns within the valley during this period. at two towns (midlake and val verde) the prairie dogs were marked prior to the epizootic. at two additional towns (vega and south entran ...19979391954
no evidence of deer mouse involvement in plague (yersinia pestis) epizootics in prairie dogs.plague, the disease caused by the bacterium yersinia pestis, can have devastating impacts on black-tailed prairie dog (cynomys ludovicianus) colonies. one suggested mechanism behind sporadic prairie dog die-offs involves an alternative mammal host, such as the deer mouse (peromyscus maniculatus), which often inhabits prairie dog colonies. we examined the flea populations of deer mice to investigate the potential of flea-borne transmission of plague between deer mice and prairie dogs in northern ...200818447619
detection of rickettsia felis, rickettsia typhi, bartonella species and yersinia pestis in fleas (siphonaptera) from africa.little is known about the presence/absence and prevalence of rickettsia spp, bartonella spp. and yersinia pestis in domestic and urban flea populations in tropical and subtropical african countries.201425299702
serological and pcr investigation of yersinia pestis in potential reservoir hosts from a plague outbreak focus in zambia.plague is a bacterial zoonotic disease, caused by yersinia pestis. rodents are the natural hosts with fleas as the vehicle of disease transmission. domestic and wild dogs and cats have also been identified as possible disease hosts. in zambia, plague outbreaks have been reported in the southern and eastern regions in the last 20 years. based on these observations, y. pestis could possibly be endemically present in the area.201728754138
Gene flow in a Yersinia pestis vector, Oropsylla hirsuta, during a plague epizootic.Appreciating how Yersinia pestis, the etiological agent of plague, spreads among black - tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) colonies (BTPD), is vital to wildlife conservation programs in North American grasslands. A little - studied aspect of the system is the role of Y. pestis vectors, i.e. fleas, play in the spreading of plague in natural settings. We investigated the genetic structure and variability of a common prairie dog flea (Oropsylla hirsuta) in BTPD colonies in order to examine ...201121946710
population genetic structure of the prairie dog flea and plague vector, oropsylla hirsuta.oropsylla hirsuta is the primary flea of the black-tailed prairie dog and is a vector of the plague bacterium, yersinia pestis. we examined the population genetic structure of o. hirsuta fleas collected from 11 prairie dog colonies, 7 of which had experienced a plague-associated die-off in 1994. in a sample of 332 o. hirsuta collected from 226 host individuals, we detected 24 unique haplotype sequences in a 480 nucleotide segment of the cytochrome oxidase ii gene. we found significant overall po ...201120696095
detection of novel bartonella strains and yersinia pestis in prairie dogs and their fleas (siphonaptera: ceratophyllidae and pulicidae) using multiplex polymerase chain reaction.we developed a multiplex polymerase chain reaction (pcr) assay that simultaneously detects three types of flea-associated microorganisms. targets for the assay were sequences encoding portions of the glta, a 17-kda antigen, and pla genes of bartonella spp. strong et al., rickettsia spp. da rocha-lima, and yersinia pestis yersin, respectively. a total of 260 flea samples containing bloodmeal remnants were analyzed from fleas collected from abandoned prairie dog (cynomys ludovicianus) burrows at t ...200312943112
the absence of concordant population genetic structure in the black-tailed prairie dog and the flea, oropsylla hirsuta, with implications for the spread of yersinia pestis.the black-tailed prairie dog (cynomys ludovicianus) is a keystone species on the mid- and short-grass prairies of north america. the species has suffered extensive colony extirpations and isolation as a result of human activity including the introduction of an exotic pathogen, yersinia pestis, the causative agent of sylvatic plague. the prairie dog flea, oropsylla hirsuta, is the most common flea on our study colonies in north-central montana and it has been shown to carry y. pestis. we used mic ...201020550633
inferring host-parasite relationships using stable isotopes: implications for disease transmission and host specificity.identifying the roles of different hosts and vectors is a major challenge in the study of the ecology of diseases caused by multi-host pathogens. intensive field studies suggested that grasshopper mice (onychomys leucogaster) help spread the bacterium that causes plague (yersinia pestis) in prairie dog colonies by sharing fleas with prairie dogs (cynomys ludovicianus); yet conclusive evidence that prairie dog fleas (oropsylla hirsuta) feed on grasshopper mice is lacking. using stable nitrogen is ...200919967881
evidence for the involvement of an alternate rodent host in the dynamics of introduced plague in prairie dogs.1. the introduction of plague to north america is a significant threat to colonies of prairie dogs (cynomys ludovicianus), a species of conservation concern in the great plains. other small rodents are exposed to the causative agent, yersinia pestis, during or after epizootics; yet, its effect on these rodents is not known, and their role in transmitting and maintaining plague in the absence of prairie dogs remains unclear. 2. we live-trapped small rodents and collected their fleas on 11 colonie ...200919302321
oropsylla hirsuta (siphonaptera: ceratophyllidae) can support plague epizootics in black-tailed prairie dogs (cynomys ludovicianus) by early-phase transmission of yersinia pestis.plague, caused by the bacterium yersinia pestis, often leads to rapid decimation of black-tailed prairie dog colonies. flea-borne transmission of y. pestis has been thought to occur primarily via blocked fleas, and therefore studies of vector efficiency have focused on the period when blockage is expected to occur (> or =5 days post-infection [p.i.]). oropsylla hirsuta, a prairie dog flea, rarely blocks and transmission is inefficient > or =5 days p.i.; thus, this flea has been considered incapa ...200818454591
possible vector dissemination by swift foxes following a plague epizootic in black-tailed prairie dogs in northwestern texas.to determine whether swift foxes (vulpes velox) could facilitate transmission of yersinia pestis to uninfected black-tailed prairie dog (cynomys ludovicianus) colonies by acquiring infected fleas, ectoparasite and serologic samples were collected from swift foxes living adjacent to prairie dog towns during a 2004 plague epizootic in northwestern texas, usa. a previous study (1999-2001) indicated that these swift foxes were infested almost exclusively with the flea pulex irritans. black-tailed pr ...200616870868
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