The Sci-Files – 01/12/2020 – Dee Jordan – African Sleeping Sickness

Chelsie Boodoo and Daniel Puentes

On this week’s The Sci-Files, your hosts Chelsie and Danny interview Demetrice (Dee) Jordan.

Dee is a dual-Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Geography, Environment and Spatial Science and the Environmental Science and Policy Program. Her dissertation research focuses on risk reduction approaches to the tsetse fly and African trypanosomiasis or ‘sleeping sickness’ control in sub-Saharan Africa. Sleeping sickness is a vector-borne parasitic illness transmitted by the bite of a trypanosome infected tsetse fly and affects both humans and animals. In humans, African trypanosomiasis has a case fatality rate of near 100%, if left untreated. While treatments exist, they are often very expensive and toxic. Currently, no vaccine is available. Each year an estimated 60 million Africans are at risk of contracting the disease from daily subsistence activities. Dee’s research seeks to reduce the burden of risk through spatial models that identify areas where exposure is most likely, introduce novel applications for vector control in risk areas and develop multi-scale participatory policies to control and eradicate the tsetse fly.

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