tick immunology and vector-borne disease
Research in the Shaw Lab at Washington State University is broadly focused on tick-transmitted diseases.
Ticks are fascinating arthropods that transmit a variety of microbes that cause significant morbidity world-wide. These exclusive blood-feeders spread disease to animals and humans when an infected tick takes a meal from an uninfected host.
Interestingly, many tick-transmitted microbes only cause disease in some hosts, exhibiting what is termed "contextual pathogenicity". Our lab is focused on understanding the biology of ticks as disease vectors and the molecular details of these arthropod-pathogen interactions.