Woutrina A Miller's research while affiliated with University of California and other places

Publications (35)

Conference Paper
In rural India where humans and livestock animals share water sources and living spaces, and sanitation is poor, exposure to the protozoa pathogens Cryptosporidium and Giardia are important potential public health concerns. We present results from a study to measure the presence of Cryptosporidium and Giardia oocysts/cysts in community water source...
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Salmonella is a genus of zoonotic bacteria that can infect a variety of animals, and may cause gastrointestinal disease in marine mammals. Many of the same Salmonella serotypes are shed by California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) and humans, which poses transmission questions and public health concerns. In this study, 454 fecal samples from th...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Protozoal pathogens causing waterborne disease are distributed worldwide and empirical evidence suggests wetlands are effective at reducing the concentrations of these pathogens under certain environmental conditions. The goal of this study was to evaluate if environmental conditions of wetlands in the Monterey Bay reg...
Conference Paper
Giardia lamblia, is an intestinal parasite commonly found in both humans and animals worldwide that can remain infectious for days to months in the environment and cause infection with a relatively low dose. In developing countries, such as rural India, the practice of open defecation and living in close proximity to livestock creates a situation w...
Conference Paper
Giardia lamblia, is an intestinal parasite commonly found in both humans and animals worldwide that can remain infectious for days to months in the environment and cause infection with a relatively low dose. In developing countries, such as rural India, the practice of open defecation and living in close proximity to livestock creates a situation w...
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Recent studies have suggested a potential role for wild birds in zoonotic transmission of Campylobacter jejuni, the leading cause of gastroenteritis in humans worldwide. In this study, we detected Campylobacter spp. in 66.9% (85/127) of free-ranging American crows (Corvus brachyrhyncos) sampled in the Sacramento Valley of California in 2012 and 201...
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abstract : A real-time PCR protocol for detecting Mycobacterium bovis in feces was evaluated in bovine tuberculosis-infected African buffalo (Syncerus caffer). Fecal samples spiked with 1.42×10(3) cells of M. bovis culture/g and Bacille Calmette-Guérin standards with 1.58×10(1) genome copies/well were positive by real-time PCR but all field samples...
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abstract : Mountain gorillas (Gorilla beringei beringei) are critically endangered primates surviving in two isolated populations in protected areas within the Virunga Massif of Rwanda, Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda. Mountain gorillas face intense ecologic pressures due to their proximi...
Article
This study is the first to report a quantitative microbial risk assessment (QMRA) on pathogens detected in stormwater discharges-of-concern, rather than relying on pathogen measurements in receiving waters. The pathogen concentrations include seven "Reference Pathogens" identified by the U.S. EPA: Cryptosporidium, Giardia, Salmonella, Norovirus, Ro...
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Blood analytes are critical for evaluating the general health of cetacean populations, so it is important to understand the intrinsic variability of hematology and serum chemistry values. Previous studies have reported data for follow-up periods of several years in managed and wild populations, but studies over long periods of time (> 20 yr) have n...
Data
Water quality characteristics of the different water types used in aggregation experiments
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Fecal pathogens are transported from a variety of sources in multi-use ecosystems such as upper Cook Inlet (CI), Alaska, which includes the state's urban center and is highly utilized by humans and animals. This study used a novel water quality testing approach to evaluate the presence and host sources of potential fecal pathogens in surface waters...
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Given their coastal site fidelity and opportunistic foraging behavior, harbor seals (Phoca vitulina) may serve as sentinels for coastal ecosystem health. Seals using urbanized coastal habitat can acquire enteric bacteria, including Vibrio that may affect their health. To understand Vibrio dynamics in seals, demographic and environmental factors wer...
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Constructed wetland systems are used to reduce pollutants and pathogens in wastewater effluent, but comparatively little is known about pathogen transport through natural wetland habitats. Fecal protozoans, including Cryptosporidium parvum, Giardia lamblia, and Toxoplasma gondii, are waterborne pathogens of humans and animals, which are carried by...
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Aquatic macroaggregates (flocs ≥0.5 mm) provide an important mechanism for vertical flux of nutrients and organic matter in aquatic ecosystems, yet their role in the transport and fate of zoonotic pathogens is largely unknown. Terrestrial pathogens that enter coastal waters through contaminated freshwater runoff may be especially prone to flocculat...
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Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) was used to type 128 Streptococcus infantarius subsp. coli isolates from sea otters and mussels. Six SmaI PFGE groups were detected, with one predominant group representing 57% of the isolates collected over a wide geographic region. Several sea otter and mussel isolates were highly related, suggesting that a...
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The risk of disease transmission from waterborne protozoa is often dependent on the origin (e.g., domestic animals versus wildlife), overall parasite load in contaminated waterways, and parasite genotype, with infections being linked to runoff or direct deposition of domestic animal and wildlife feces. Fecal samples collected from domestic animals...
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Marine mammals are at risk for infection by fecal-associated zoonotic pathogens when they swim and feed in polluted nearshore marine waters. Because of their tendency to consume 25-30% of their body weight per day in coastal filter-feeding invertebrates, southern sea otters (Enhydra lutris nereis) can act as sentinels of marine ecosystem health in...
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Fecal pathogen contamination of watersheds worldwide is increasingly recognized, and natural wetlands may have an important role in mitigating fecal pathogen pollution flowing downstream. Given that waterborne protozoa, such as Cryptosporidium and Giardia, are transported within surface waters, this study evaluated associations between fecal protoz...
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We collected blood from 18 beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas), live-captured in Bristol Bay, Alaska, USA, in May and September 2008, to establish baseline hematologic and serum chemistry values and to determine whether there were significant differences in hematologic values by sex, season, size/age, or time during the capture period. Whole bloo...
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To determine types and estimate prevalence of potentially zoonotic enteric pathogens shed by wild animals admitted to either of 2 wildlife hospitals and to characterize distribution of these pathogens and of aerobic bacteria in a hospital environment. Cross-sectional study. Fecal samples from 338 animals in 2 wildlife hospitals and environmental sa...
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The flux of terrestrially derived pathogens to coastal waters presents a significant health risk to marine wildlife, as well as to humans who utilize the nearshore for recreation and seafood harvest. Anthropogenic changes in natural habitats may result in increased transmission of zoonotic pathogens to coastal waters. The objective of our work was...
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"Super-blooms" of cyanobacteria that produce potent and environmentally persistent biotoxins (microcystins) are an emerging global health issue in freshwater habitats. Monitoring of the marine environment for secondary impacts has been minimal, although microcystin-contaminated freshwater is known to be entering marine ecosystems. Here we confirm d...
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A survey of storm runoff fecal coliform bacteria (FCB) from working farm and ranch pastures is presented in conjunction with a survey of FCB in manure management systems (MMS). The cross-sectional survey of pasture runoff was conducted on 34 pastures on five different dairies over 2 yr under varying conditions of precipitation, slope, manure manage...
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The value of Bacteroidales genetic markers and fecal indicator bacteria (FIB) to predict the occurrence of waterborne pathogens was evaluated in ambient waters along the central California coast. Bacteroidales host-specific quantitative PCR (qPCR) was used to quantify fecal bacteria in water and provide insights into contributing host fecal sources...
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Shigellosis causes diarrheal disease in humans from both developed and developing countries, and multi-drug resistance is an emerging problem. The objective of this study is to present a unified approach that can be used to characterize endemic and outbreak patterns of shigellosis using use a suite of epidemiologic and molecular techniques. The app...
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Although protected for nearly a century, California's sea otters have been slow to recover, in part due to exposure to fecally-associated protozoal pathogens like Toxoplasma gondii and Sarcocystis neurona. However, potential impacts from exposure to fecal bacteria have not been systematically explored. Using selective media, we examined feces from...
Article
While reports on waterborne infections with Toxoplasma gondii are emerging worldwide, detection of this zoonotic parasite in water remains challenging. Lack of standardized and quantitative methods for detection of T. gondii oocysts in water also limits research on the transport and fate of this pathogen through aquatic habitats. Here, we compare t...
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Climatic factors and on-farm management practices were evaluated for their association with the concentrations (cyst/liter) and instantaneous loads (cysts/second) of Giardia duodenalis in storm-based runoff from dairy lots and other high-cattle-use areas on five coastal California farms over two storm seasons. Direct fluorescent antibody analysis w...
Article
Bivalve molluscs concentrate Cryptosporidium oocysts from fecal-contaminated aquatic environments and are therefore useful in monitoring water quality. A real-time TaqMan polymerase chain reaction (PCR) system was developed to allow for large scale quantitative detection of Cryptosporidium spp. in mussels (Mytilus californianus). The TaqMan sensiti...
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This study evaluated clams as bioindicators of fecal protozoan contamination using three approaches: (i) clam tissue spiking experiments to compare several detection techniques; (ii) clam tank exposure experiments to evaluate clams that had filtered Cryptosporidium oocysts from inoculated water under a range of simulated environmental conditions; (...

Citations

... Bacteroidales is more abundant than E. coli in fecal sources, its gene markers have been identified to differentiate fecal pollution from different sources (e.g., humans, cows, and pigs) (Silkie and Nelson, 2009;Liu et al., 2010). The values of Bacteroidales gene markers have been acknowledged by their comparable performance to the traditional FIBs (e.g., total coliforms, fecal coliforms, and Enterococcus) in predicting the presence of pathogens (Savichtcheva et al., 2007;Schriewer et al., 2010;Nshimyimana et al., 2017). ...
... A clonal strain of T. gallinae (A1) has been identified by morphological and subsequent molecular analysis as a causative agent of trichomonosis in European birds (Robinson et al. 2010;Lawson et al. 2011a). Globally, however, it is not the sole etiological agent of trichomonosis outbreaks, as a different variant (A2) was isolated from Band-tailed Pigeons Patagioenas fasciata during epidemics of the disease in California (Girard et al. 2014b). A new species of Trichomonas (T. ...
... Campylobacter is a foodborne enteropathogen which transmits to humans mainly by consumption of Campylobacter contaminated dairy products and raw or partially cooked meat [1,2]. Most Campylobacter species, including C. jejuni, C. coli, C. lari, C. fetus, C. upsaliensis, C. hypointestinalis, C. helveticus, C. lanienae, and C. mucosalis are found in warm-blooded animals [2][3][4][5][6][7]. However, some Campylobacter species, such as C. fetus and C. geochelonis can also a1111111111 a1111111111 a1111111111 a1111111111 a1111111111 occur in cold-blooded reptiles (lizard, tortoise, and snake) [8,9]. ...
... Additionally, G. duodenalis assemblage A, subassemblage AII was detected in wild western lowland gorillas that were under habituation and fully habituated (but not in unhabituated animals) in Dzanga-Sangha Protected Areas, Central African Republic [71]. Zoonotic G. duodenalis sub-assemblages BIII (n = 1) and BIV (n = 5) were also identified in mountain gorillas at the VVNP [61]. These wild great ape populations are facing intense ecological pressures due to their proximity to local community people and human-driven activities within the park, such as research, tourism, illegal hunting, and anti-poaching patrols. ...
... In Nigeria typing has allowed investigation into origins of the disease, with the cattle strain type being more closely related to those observed in neighbouring Cameroon than circulating in the local human population (47). Mb in wild-ranging animals has also been tested (41,48). ...
... In addition, resource scarcity affecting availability of freshwater irrigation implies application of alternative approaches to grow food, including reuse of wastewater effluents following treatment. While effective means for safe application of treated effluents for produce irrigation are emerging (Orlofsky et al., 2013), breaks in treatment systems or ineffective pathogen removal in resource-limited regions implies that surveillance for presence of harmful pathogens on vegetables and fruit will become even more critical. The mPCR approach developed in this investigation offers a new tool for the produce industry, regulatory agencies charged with food safety, and academics to perform routine screening of fresh produce for the presence of protozoan pathogen contamination. ...
... Regarding the virological results, it is relevant to highlight the consistent detection of DNA viruses (HAdV and JCPyV) compared to no detection of investigated RNA viruses, such as RVA and noroviruses, that are among the leading causes of viral gastroenteritis (Assis et al., 2018;Lim et al., 2015;McBride et al., 2013), and have been frequently detected in the environmental waters (Sibanda & Okoh, 2013). Interestingly, in a previous investigation where our group assessed the roof-harvested rainwater (RHRW) quality collected in a densely urbanized area, there has been a significant prevalence of RVA and norovirus (Shubo et al., 2021). ...
... All accredited zoos and aquariums that care for cetaceans have developed health monitoring and preventative care programs that include monitoring multiple aspects of physical health [24-26, [28][29][30]. Diagnostic testing is conducted on biological samples collected during routine examinations to assess health and monitor welfare. For example, comprehensive blood tests are useful for detecting physical health abnormalities. ...
... Further, birds, fishes, amphibians, and small mammals were also reported to harbor Cryptosporidium as well as Giardia species (Holubova et al., 2016;Ryan, 2010;Yang et al., 2015). In the lithosphere, human and animal excreta mixed in soil run-off also contribute to the contamination of aquatic ecosystems with waterborne parasitic protozoans (Dai and Boll, 2003;Norman et al., 2013). While Acanthamoeba is ubiquitous in the environment, Cryptosporidium spp. ...