Jessica Leibler on the animal-human interface

Jessica Leibler of the Department of Environmental Health at Boston University’s School of Public Health gave a talk at Log Lunch about her research on animals, humans, and the diseases they carry.

She is currently researching three things: zoonotic–animal to human, that is–disease transmission, infectious diseases associated with urban homelessness, and the epidemic of chronic kidney disease in Central America.

Her first research topic warranted working in slaughterhouses–“real unpleasant fieldwork”–and stresses the high capacity for disease transmission there: “A concentrated animal feeding operation, known as a CAFO, with a sick animal is like a hospital without any room to breathe.”

Animals are on virtually on top of one another in grimy unkempt pens where the potential for disease transmission is high.

Jessica is currently studying a virus that cows seem to be transmitting to humans in the southeast US.

–Jane Tekin, ’19