Archived Member Highlights

2023 Archives

July - Aug 2023

Valley fever is intimately linked to environmental conditions, and understanding the factors that contribute to its prevalence is crucial. Researchers in the VFC are investigating the effects of climate change, soil composition, and land-use patterns of the distribution and incidence of Valley fever. Bridget Barker, from Northern Arizona University (NAU), is one of those researchers. Bridget is working on several projects moving Valley fever research forward. This research can inform public health strategies and help individuals take appropriate precautions when residing or traveling in endemic regions. Increasing public awareness about Valley fever is equally important, as early recognition of symptoms and prompt medical attention can prevent complications and improve outcomes.

Sept - Nov 2023

Prevention is always better than a cure, and the development of an effective vaccine against Valley fever could have a significant impact on public health and the economy. Researchers in the Valley Fever Collaborative are making strides in this area for both humans and dogs. Although vaccine development is a complex and time-consuming process, the ongoing efforts hold great promise for preventing future cases of Valley fever. Lisa Shubitz, a veterinarian, and Marc Orbach, a fungal geneticist and molecular biologist, both from The University of Arizona (UArizona), are VFC members that are making progress in the development of a canine vaccine. Orbach's study of Coccidioides virulence factors led to the discovery and development of the delta-cps1 vaccine against coccidioidomycosis. Shubitz' group worked on mouse and dog studies to show that it is highly effective at preventing Valley fever in both species.