January 31, 2018
Anika Larson graduated from the Occupational Health at the Human-Animal Interface training program with an MPH in 2017. During her time as a trainee Anika worked with the Washington State Integrated Surveillance for Antimicrobial Resistance (WISAR) database team to develop a draft “One Health” antibiogram report for Washington State integrating human, animal and environmental sampling data.
Anika is now a Kuskaya Fellow on the Antimicrobial Resistance and One Health Team at the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia in Lima, Peru.
Antimicrobial resistance is a growing threat to medicines that are vital in human and veterinary medicine. The environment can act as a reservoir for organisms that harbor resistance genes and for the genes themselves. Antimicrobial resistance is a prime demonstration of the One Health concept that the health of humans, animals and the environment are connected.
The Kuskaya Research Project focuses on a cohort of households in Cajamarca, Peru to identify what household and regional factors are associated with water quality and antimicrobial resistance.
Contaminated drinking water can deliver antimicrobial resistant bacteria from local sources of contamination to humans. Researchers aim to determine the relationship between household factors (e.g. household water treatment, and household animals), water quality and antibiotic resistance in water contaminants in rural Cajamarca. They are also investigating sources of household drinking water contamination.
In addition, the Kuskaya Project researchers are interested in migratory shorebirds traveling between continents, as they may contribute to the worldwide spread of resistance. Researchers aim to investigate the birds that visit Peru’s coasts for antibiotic resistance patterns that are relevant to human health.
“In the Kuskaya Fellowship, I hope to develop a better understanding of health systems and public health in a Peruvian context, gain experience in international research and collaboration, and build connections with other dedicated researchers in public and environmental health” says Anika.