Notre Dame faculty-student team researches the effects of repellents on mosquito behaviors

Diane Choi, ’16, was invited to present her research at the 2015 American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  On October 26 and 27, Choi presented posters about her work in the laboratory of Nicole Achee, PhD, Eck Institute for Global Health member and Research Associate Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, University of Notre Dame.  Choi also collaborated with researchers from Tulane University and North Carolina State University for her project.

Choi’s research focuses on the effects of repellent chemicals on mosquito behaviors required for survival and propagation.  Her overall research project, “Effect of Spatial Repellent Exposure on Aedes aegypti Attraction to Oviposition Sites,” builds on existing data regarding the post-exposure effects of spatial repellents on dengue vector blood-feeding, flight, and resting behaviors. 


Achee and Choi were recipients of the Eck Institute for Global Health’s Undergraduate Research Support Program which funds the training of Notre Dame undergraduates engaged in global health research with Eck Institute for Global Health faculty members.  “The Undergraduate Research Support Program facilitates engaging undergraduates in the scientific research process on important topics in the field of global health,” said Achee. “I look forward to continuing to serve as a mentor to Diane and others in the ND undergraduate student body.”  Achee and Choi are currently preparing a manuscript to publish project findings.

Choi is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences with a track in the Biomedical Sciences. After graduating she will take a gap year before pursuing medical school. She hopes to continue working in the field of global health in order to contribute to the ongoing efforts of alleviating the global burden of vector-transmitted diseases.

About the Eck Institute for Global Health, The Eck Institute for Global Health recognizes health as a fundamental human right and endeavors to promote research, training, and service to advance health standards for all people, especially people in low-and middle-income countries, who are disproportionately impacted by preventable diseases. The Institute is responsible for the Master of Science in Global Health Program which is a 12-month, science-centric academic program that arms students with the knowledge, tools, and experience to be part of the solution to the global health crisis. The rigorous curriculum includes classroom training and experiential learning to prepare students for improving human health around the world, especially in poor and underserved people.


Photo: Diane Choi presents her research poster at the 64th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene October 25-30, 2015.