Dr. Lian Thomas (nee Doble) MRCVS, MSc, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Scientist (ZooLink)

Bio

I was supported by the Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) to undertake my PhD within the Zoonotic & Emerging Diseases research group (ZED group). I have a particular interest in the utilisation of livestock for socio-economic development and in the concept of ‘One Health’. At present, I am working as a consultant for the World Health Organization.

My research was concerned with the epidemiology of cysticercosis, the intermediate stage of the tapeworm Taenia solium in human and porcine populations in western Kenya. Cysticercosis is a zoonotic disease of increasing public health and economic importance. It is estimated by the World Health Organization (WHO) to affect over 50 million people worldwide and infection of the central nervous system, neurocysticercosis, is now understood to be a leading cause of acquired epilepsy. The infection in pork leads to an economic burden upon farmers as they are unable to achieve the highest prices for their meat. This disease has been neglected by the international community due to a paucity of region specific epidemiological data; my project made efforts to address this issue and hence inform the development of effective control interventions relevant to the situation in western Kenya.

Activities undertaken

  • Assessed the prevalence of cysticercosis and taeniasis in the human population of western Kenya
  • Assessed the prevalence of cysticercosis in the porcine population of western Kenya
  • Used Bayesian analysis to validate serologic and coproantigen diagnostics for cysticercosis in the local population
  • Studied the spatial distribution of human and porcine cysticercosis at homestead and district level
  • Elucidate risk factors for human and porcine cysticercosis in western Kenya
  • Validated a laminar flow pen-side test
  • Studied free ranging domestic pig ecology

Publications

Recent publications (as of December 2013)

  • Doble LF, Fèvre EM. Focus on neglected zoonoses. Vet Rec. 2010;166(18):546-7. Access it online
  • Eshitera EE, Maingi N, Githigia SM, Kitala PM, Doble LF, Fèvre EM, et al. Prevalence of porcine cysticercosis and associated risk factors in Homa Bay District, Kenya. BMC Vet Res. 2012;8:234. Access it online
  • Thomas LF, de Glanville WA, Cook EA, Fèvre EM. The spatial ecology of free-ranging domestic pigs (Sus scrofa) in western Kenya. BMC Vet Res. 2013;9(1):46. Access it online
  • Thomas LF. Epidemiology of Taenia solium Cysticercosis in Western Kenya. Edinburgh: University of Edinburgh; 2013. Access it online

Curriculum Vitae

2013:                  Completed PhD in Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh

2009:                 Gained MRCVS by examination

2004-2009:   St. Georges University, Grenada; Doctor of Veterinary Medicine

2008:

2007: Attended the Wellcome Trust ‘Fundamentals of Veterinary Science’ summer school, Cambridge University

2005-2008:    St. Georges University & Makerere University, Uganda; MSc Animal Production
1999-2002:     Imperial College, London; BSc Equine Science

Contact

Lian.Thomas@NOSPAMzoonotic-diseases.org (please remove the ‘NOSPAM’ part of the address before sending)

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