Event Title

Mapping Waterborne Pathogens in Ecuador to Reduce Infection and Elevate Human Quality of Life

Presenter Information

Leslie Lange

Location

Logan Golf & Country Club, Logan, UT

Start Date

3-26-2019 5:00 PM

End Date

3-26-2019 7:00 PM

Description

All humans depend on water but inhabitants of developing countries often lack access to sanitary water. Despite substantial investment from government and nongovernmental groups, pathogens such as rotavirus and E. Coli remain common in many areas. These pathogens contribute to the 4 billion cases of diarrhea each year,1 causing death, decreased cognition, and reduced economic output throughout the developing world. I propose to map E. Coli and rotavirus abundance in waterways in Ecuador during the wet season using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs), a new technique that allow quantification of pathogens in the field. I hypothesize that the period of flooding during the months of November to May disperses the pathogens because of a combination of discrete (i.e. point) and distributed (i.e. nonpoint) pathogen sources. To test this hypothesis, I will map the distribution of pathogens in May and correlate this distribution with domestic and municipal activities. Working with local researchers and policy makers, I will synthesize my results into an executive summary. Depending on the results, we will create plans to improve water sanitation infrastructure, education about flood water, and public health options for at-risk communities.

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Mar 26th, 5:00 PM Mar 26th, 7:00 PM

Mapping Waterborne Pathogens in Ecuador to Reduce Infection and Elevate Human Quality of Life

Logan Golf & Country Club, Logan, UT

All humans depend on water but inhabitants of developing countries often lack access to sanitary water. Despite substantial investment from government and nongovernmental groups, pathogens such as rotavirus and E. Coli remain common in many areas. These pathogens contribute to the 4 billion cases of diarrhea each year,1 causing death, decreased cognition, and reduced economic output throughout the developing world. I propose to map E. Coli and rotavirus abundance in waterways in Ecuador during the wet season using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs), a new technique that allow quantification of pathogens in the field. I hypothesize that the period of flooding during the months of November to May disperses the pathogens because of a combination of discrete (i.e. point) and distributed (i.e. nonpoint) pathogen sources. To test this hypothesis, I will map the distribution of pathogens in May and correlate this distribution with domestic and municipal activities. Working with local researchers and policy makers, I will synthesize my results into an executive summary. Depending on the results, we will create plans to improve water sanitation infrastructure, education about flood water, and public health options for at-risk communities.