Sofia B. Ocaña, Ph.D.

Title
Postdoctoral Fellow
Department
Department of Biomedical Sciences
Institution
Ohio University
Address
Irvine 333
City, State, Zip
Athens, OH 45701
Phone
(740) 593 2192
Website
http://www.oucom.ohiou.edu/tdi/
Research Field
Parasitology
Award Year
2013
Country Of Origin
Ecuador
Mentor Name
Mario Grijalva, Ph.D.

Research

Chagas disease is caused by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi and constitutes one of the most neglected parasitic infections in Latin America. Trypanosoma cruzi populations are maintained among numerous wild mammal hosts and insect vectors. My earlier research contributed to the understanding of its epidemiology and how characteristics of the local environment define and influence transmission and control strategies of Chagas disease. As a Pew Fellow, I will employ genetic typing techniques, including microsatellite analysis and sequencing, to further understand the role of hosts in Chagas, disease transmission, through the genetics of the parasite, in areas where a control program has been implemented. This research will be carried out at Dr. Grijalva's lab in the Tropical Disease Institute of Ohio University and will shed light on the complex dynamics transmission of this disease and how best to avoid human transmission.