© Pint of Science, 2019. All rights reserved.
Gather your armies, tonight we bring you the ultimate battle. From guts to gutters, come find out how tiny things have big impacts.
Regarding Rat Risks: Pathogens carried by rats and how our actions can affect their spread
Kaylee Byers (PhD Candidate Department of Interdisciplinary Studies UBC; Regional Director of the British Columbia Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative)
Rats are infamous for carrying some seriously scary disease-causing critters. Most of us are familiar with plague, but rats also carry a number of other pathogens that can make people sick. In this talk, rat detective Kaylee Byers will discuss what is known about the pathogens carried by Vancouver’s rats and how certain human interventions can have the paradoxical effect of increasing pathogens spread among rats.
The dirt on worms and autoimmunity
Lisa Osborne (Assistant Professor, Dept of Microbiology & Immunology Canada Research Chair in Host-Microbiome Interactions)
When a disease is “autoimmune,” your immune system recognizes your own cells as a threat instead of targeting infectious agents. New work suggests that genetics are only part of the picture for autoimmune risk: environmental insults, like exposure to childhood infection, are also at play. For instance, in areas of the world where infections with worm parasites are common, there is a low incidence of autoimmune disease. What is the mechanism? And what lengths will people go to for treatment?