Katarina Pintar

Katarina Pintar
Natural Resources Canada | NRCan · Canadian Forest Service

MSc, PhD

About

93
Publications
16,981
Reads
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2,067
Citations
Introduction
Katarina Pintar currently works in the Science Policy Integration Branch of the Canadian Forest Service, Natural Resources Canada. She is the Director of the Research Coordination and Integration Division, in the areas of climate change, pest management, wildland fire, cumulative effects and sustainable forest management research.
Additional affiliations
October 2010 - present
Public Health Agency of Canada
Position
  • Epidemiologist
January 2004 - December 2010
Public Health Agency of Canada
Position
  • Environmental Microbiologist
January 2004 - October 2015
Public Health Agency of Canada
Position
  • Surveillance Lead, FoodNet Canada

Publications

Publications (93)
Article
Full-text available
Recreational water use is an important source of human enteric illness. Enhanced (episodic) surveillance of natural recreational waters as a supplement to beach monitoring can enrich our understanding of human health risks. From 2011 to 2013, water sampling was undertaken at recreational sites on a watershed in eastern Canada. This study compared t...
Article
Full-text available
Approximately 238,000 to 450,000 Albertans rely on private water wells for their water needs. In Canada, private well owners are responsible for monitoring and maintaining the quality of their water well, yet studies in Alberta indicate that owners do not undertake regular well maintenance or testing. This survey obtained information regarding farm...
Article
Full-text available
Optical sensing of chlorophyll-a (chl-a), turbidity, and fluorescent dissolved organic matter (fDOM) is often used to characterize the quality of water. There are many site-specific factors and environmental conditions that can affect optically sensed readings; notwithstanding the comparative implication of different procedures used to measure thes...
Article
Public health inspectors (PHIs) play an important role in enforcing the regulation and monitoring of approximately 9000 small noncommunity drinking water systems across Ontario. These small drinking water systems (SDWS) are diverse and face unique challenges. The purpose of this research was to explore PHIs’ insights and needs related to these SDWS...
Article
Salmonella is one of the leading causes of gastro-enteric disease in Canada, second only to Campylobacter. The mean exposure of Salmonella measured in cells ingested per person per day, from 15 transmission routes, including foodborne, animal contact and waterborne routes, was estimated for Canada using data inputs from 2005 to 2015. Chicken meat w...
Article
Wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) discharge is often considered a principal source of surface water contamination. In this study, a three-dimensional fully-integrated groundwater–surface water model was used to simulate the transport characteristics and cumulative loading of an artificial sweetener (acesulfame) and fecal indicator bacteria (Escheri...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a critical public health issue that involves interrelationships between people, animals, and the environment. Traditionally, interdisciplinary efforts to mitigate AMR in the food chain have involved public health, human and veterinary medicine, and agriculture stakeholders. Our objective was to identify...
Article
Full-text available
This study applied a 16S rRNA gene metabarcoding approach to characterize bacterial community compositional and functional attributes for surface water samples collected within, primarily, agriculturally dominated watersheds in Ontario and Québec, Canada. Compositional heterogeneity was best explained by stream order, season, and watercourse discha...
Article
Full-text available
Animal companionship can have many physical and psychological benefits; however, animals can also be a source of zoonotic infection, including enteric illnesses; it has been estimated that in Canada, nearly 85,000 enteric illnesses due to eight pathogens occur each year related to animal contact. There is a lack of baseline data on animal‐related e...
Article
Full-text available
In Canada, over 400,000 enteric diseases related to drinking water occur each year, highlighting the importance of understanding sources of Canadians' drinking and recreational water exposures. To address this need, a population-based telephone survey of 10,942 Canadians was conducted between 2014 and 2015, assessing Canadian's drinking water sourc...
Article
Full-text available
Enteric pathogens are commonly known to be transmitted through food or water; however, contact with animals is another important transmission route. This study estimated the annual burden of illness attributable to animal contact for eight enteric pathogens in Canada. Using data from a Canadian expert elicitation on transmission routes, the proport...
Article
Campylobacteriosis, the most frequent bacterial enteric disease, shows a clear yet unexplained seasonality. The study purpose was to explore the influence of seasonal fluctuation in the contamination of and in the behaviour exposures to two important sources of Campylobacter on the seasonality of campylobacteriosis. Time series analyses were applie...
Article
Giardia contamination in the Grand River Watershed (south-western Ontario, Canada) was monitored from 2005 to 2013 as part of FoodNet Canada. Our study objectives were to describe the temporal pattern of Giardia occurrence and determine whether water quality parameters and bacterial indicators could act as effective markers for Giardia occurrence....
Article
Full-text available
Human campylobacteriosis is a common zoonosis with a significant burden in many countries. Its prevention is difficult because humans can be exposed to Campylobacter through various exposures: foodborne, waterborne or by contact with animals. This study aimed at attributing campylobacteriosis to sources at the point of exposure. It combined compara...
Article
The relative contributions of exposure pathways associated with cattle-manure-borne Escherichia coli O157:H7 on public health have yet to be fully characterized. A stochastic, quantitative microbial risk assessment (QMRA) model was developed to describe a hypothetical cattle farm in order to compare the relative importance of five routes of exposur...
Article
p> OBJECTIVES: Human infection with Escherichia coli O157:H7/NM has historically been associated with consumption of undercooked ground beef. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the correlation of the decline in E. coli O157:H7/NM infections in Canada with the introduction of control efforts in ground beef by industry. METHODS: The human i...
Article
The objectives of this work were to investigate the relationships between characteristics of small non-community drinking water systems (SDWSs) and the performance of these systems with respect to Escherichia coli testing and risk ratings. Ontario-wide SDWS data were analysed using regression models with outcomes of (1) having an adverse E. Coli te...
Article
Campylobacteriosis is the leading bacterial gastrointestinal disease internationally, contributing significantly to the enteric illness burden. Cases have been associated with the consumption of raw milk, a behavior that has garnered attention recently. Estimates of the prevalence and levels of Campylobacter spp. in raw milk are lacking, which hind...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Campylobacteriosis is a prominent bacterial gastrointestinal infection worldwide with several transmission pathways. Its non-foodborne routes have been less documented and quantified. The study aimed to quantitatively explore the role of potential risk factors not directly associated with food for sporadic cases of C. jejuni infection...
Article
To inform source attribution efforts, a comparative exposure assessment was developed to estimate the relative exposure to Campylobacter, the leading bacterial gastrointestinal disease in Canada, for 13 different transmission routes within Ontario, Canada, during the summer. Exposure was quantified with stochastic models at the population level, wh...
Article
Full-text available
Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) associated enteric illness is attributed to O157 and non-O157 serotypes, however, traditional culture-based methods under-detect non-O157 STEC. Labor and consumable costs are major barriers for implementation of CDC recommendation of testing all stools for both O157 and non-O157. We evaluated the feasib...
Article
Many Cryptosporidium species/genotypes are not considered infectious to humans, and more realistic estimations of seasonal infection risks could be made using human infectious species/genotype information to inform quantitative microbial risk assessments (QMRA). Cryptosporidium oocyst concentration and species/genotype data were collected from thre...
Article
Salmonella is an important human pathogen, and production animals as well as water are known potential sources. This study helped provide insight into the epidemiology of Salmonella by comparing Salmonella strains found in humans to those detected in production animals and water in the same geographic area and time frame. Salmonella was found in 55...
Article
Full-text available
Importance: The results of this study demonstrate the importance of assay validation upon data interpretation of environmental monitoring for Campylobacter when using molecular-based assays. Previous studies describing Campylobacter prevalence in Canada utilized primers that we have determined to be non-specific due to their cross-amplification of...
Article
In public health reporting, a distinction is made between Canadian-acquired and international travel-related cases, but there is no differentiation between domestic travel-related and endemic cases. The objective of this presentation is to explore how demographic and exposure factors related to giardiasis vary between travel and endemic cases, for...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: Enteric illness represents a significant burden of illness in Canada and internationally. Building on previous research, an expert elicitation was undertaken to explore the routes of transmission for 28 pathogens involved in enteric illness in Canada. This article considers the subcategories of foodborne, waterborne, and animal contact...
Article
Full-text available
Three tributaries of the Grand River watershed (Ontario, Canada), each representing different watershed types (urban, agricultural/rural, and mixed land-use) were examined to understand the spatial, temporal, and host-source distribution of the waterborne pathogen, Cryptosporidium. Cryptosporidium was frequently found throughout the study (73%, 65/...
Article
Full-text available
Animal contact is a potential transmission route for campylobacteriosis, and both domestic household pet and petting zoo exposures have been identified as potential sources of exposure. Research has typically focussed on the prevalence, concentration, and transmission of zoonoses from farm animals to humans, yet there are gaps in our understanding...
Data
Forest plot for meta-analysis of household pets prevalence values. (TIF)
Data
Prevalence of Campylobacter in Household Pets from Literature Review. (DOCX)
Data
Forest plot for meta-analysis of household pets revised prevalence values. (TIF)
Data
Prevalence of Campylobacter in Petting Zoo Animals from Literature Review. (DOCX)
Data
Household Pets Search Strings. (DOCX)
Data
Forest plot for meta-analysis of petting zoo animal prevalence values. (TIF)
Data
Petting Zoo Animals Search Strings. (DOCX)
Article
Full-text available
The estimated burden of endemic acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) annually in Canada is 20·5 million cases. Approximately 4 million of these cases are domestically acquired and foodborne, yet the proportion of waterborne cases is unknown. A number of randomized controlled trials have been completed to estimate the influence of tap water from mun...
Article
Full-text available
Waterborne illness related to the consumption of contaminated or inadequately treated water is a global public health concern. Although the magnitude of drinking water-related illnesses in developed countries is lower than that observed in developing regions of the world, drinking water is still responsible for a proportion of all cases of acute ga...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Reports of outbreaks in Canada and the United States (U.S.) indicate that approximately 50% of all waterborne diseases occur in small non-community drinking water systems (SDWSs). Summarizing these investigations to identify the factors and conditions contributing to outbreaks is needed in order to help prevent future outbreaks. Objec...
Article
The purpose of this study is to determine how demographic and exposure factors related to giardiasis vary between travel and endemic cases. Exposure and demographic data were gathered by public health inspectors from giardiasis cases reported from the Region of Waterloo from 2006 to 2012. Logistic regression models were fit to assess differences in...
Article
Full-text available
Foodborne illness estimates help to set food safety priorities and create public health policies. The Public Health Agency of Canada estimates that 4 million episodes of foodborne illness occur each year in Canada due to 30 known pathogens and unspecified agents. The main objective of this study was to estimate the number of domestically acquired f...
Article
Serovar prevalence of the zoonotic pathogen, Salmonella enterica, was compared among 1624 surface water samples collected previously from five different Canadian agricultural watersheds over multiple years. Phagetyping, pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), and antimicrobial resistance subtyping assays were performed on serovars Enteritidis, Typ...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: Enteric illness contributes to a significant burden of illness in Canada and globally. Understanding sources of illness is a critical step in identifying and preventing risks to human health. Expert elicitation is a powerful tool, used previously, to elicit information about enteric illness source attribution where data are difficult or...
Article
Full-text available
Expert elicitation is a useful tool to explore uncertainty and answer questions where data are expensive or difficult to obtain. It has been used across a variety of disciplines and represents an important method for estimating source attribution for enteric illness. A systematic review was undertaken to explore published expert elicitation studies...
Article
Full-text available
When surface water levels decline, exposed streambed sediments can be mobilized and washed into the water course when subjected to erosive rainfall. In this study, rainfall simulations were conducted over exposed sediments along stream banks at four distinct locations in an agriculturally dominated river basin with the objective of quantifying the...
Article
Full-text available
Parasitic diseases are of considerable public health significance in Canada, particularly in rural and remote areas. Food- and water-borne parasites contribute significantly to the overall number of parasitic infections reported in Canada. While data on the incidence of some of these diseases are available, knowledge of the true burden of infection...
Article
Full-text available
Laboratory-based surveillance data is essential for monitoring trends in the incidence of enteric disease. Current Canadian human enteric surveillance systems report only confirmed cases of human enteric disease and are often unable to capture the number of negative test results. Data from 9116 hospital stool specimens from the Waterloo Region in C...
Article
Full-text available
The water operator plays an important role in water safety; however, little published research exists that has examined this role. The purpose of this study was to develop a greater understanding of the experience, existing knowledge, confidence and future training needs of the small, non-community drinking water operator in Ontario in order to hel...
Article
Full-text available
The true incidence of endemic acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) attributable to drinking water in Canada is unknown. Using a systematic review framework, the literature was evaluated to identify methods used to attribute AGI to drinking water. Several strategies have been suggested or applied to quantify AGI attributable to drinking water at a n...
Article
Full-text available
Up to 150 million North Americans currently use a groundwater system as their principal drinking water source. These systems are a potential source of exposure to enteric pathogens, contributing to the burden of waterborne disease. Waterborne disease outbreaks have been associated with US and Canadian groundwater systems over the past two decades....
Article
Policy-makers working at the interface of agri-food and public health often deal with complex and cross-cutting issues that have broad health impacts and socio-economic implications. They have a responsibility to ensure that policy-making based on these issues is accountable and informed by the best available scientific evidence. We conducted a qua...
Article
Full-text available
Verotoxin-producing Escherichia coli (VTEC) strains are the cause of food-borne and waterborne illnesses around the world. Traditionally, surveillance of the human population as well as the environment has focused on the detection of E. coli O157:H7. Recently, increasing recognition of non-O157 VTEC strains as human pathogens and the German O104:H4...