People

Sagan Friant -  Principal Investigator

I am a biocultural anthropologist working at the intersection of biological anthropology and human ecology. I integrate theory and methods from anthropology, ecology and epidemiology to investigate health consequences for humans and wildlife living in shared and rapidly changing environments. My work is centered in Nigeria, but has applications to coupled human and wildlife health systems globally.

Postdoctoral Researchers

Métrey Tiv

Department of Anthropology

The Pennsylvania State University

Affiliations: Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics

email: metrey.tiv@psu.edu

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I am a physician specialized in Public Health and Social Medicine. I have conducted interdisciplinary research in Benin, Ivory Coast, Mali, Thailand and France. My research has focused on illnesses impacting populations worldwide (including HIV, TB, HCV, HPV, malnutrition) and on health policies aiming at reducing health inequalities. My research at the RISK lab investigates how concepts of illness, perceived risks and health seeking behaviors inform our understanding of and ability to control Lassa Fever in Nigeria.

Graduate students

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I am a PhD student on the Immunology and Infectious disease track in the Molecular, Cellular, and Integrative Biosciences program (MCIBS). My research uses metagenomics and immunological tools to understand emerging infectious disease risks associated with handling bushmeat in Nigeria. Prior to joining the RISK lab, I received my MS in Biotechnology at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center and BS in Biology from Angelo State University. I have conducted research on co-infection and viral transmission dynamics (Hudson/Vandegrift group at Penn State), bat field population studies at Big Bend NP and Central America, and cancer immunotherapeutic research. Upon completion of both degrees, I also worked as a government contractor for the U.S. Navy Medical Research Unit-SA (NAMRU-SA) at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, where I worked on a DoD-funded project studying snake venom. In 2018 I accepted a J. Lloyd Huck Graduate Fellowship at Penn State University to pursue infectious disease research for the long term. In my free time, I enjoy spending time with his wife and children, playing basketball, exploring the great outdoors (kayaking, disc golfing, longboarding, bioblitzing), and attending Penn State sporting events.

Field Research Assistants

Wilfred Akonjom Ayambem

University of Calabar

Alobi Obaji Alobi

University of Calabar

Nzube Michael Ifebueme

University of Calabar

Oshama Maria Okoi

University of Calabar

Former Research Students

Undergraduate research students (mentored through the Goldberg Lab at UW-Madison)

Kelsey Brown – microbiology capstone, microbiology major, pre-vet, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Ryan Fuglestad – independent study, biology/zoology major, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Cesar Gutiérrez – independent study, biology/zoology major, pre-vet, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Corrigan Shea - independent study, conservation biology major, pre-law, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Carly Malave – independent study, medical microbiology and immunology, certificates in African studies and global health

Quinn Mallery – independent study, economics major, pre-med, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Mengyao Niu – independent study, biochemistry major, global health certificate, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Julia Purnell – independent study, animal science major, pre-vet, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Mason Saari – independent study, biology/zoology major, pre-vet, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Nick Segel – independent study, biology/zoology major, pre-med, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Julia Slezak – independent study, microbiology major, pre-vet, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Field research assistants

Rosemary Gbegbaje –MSc in Conservation Biology, University of Jos, Plateau-State, Nigeria

Festus Onajde – MSc in Ecology and Environmental Biology, University of Ibadan, Nigeria

Paschal Oshen Odey - MSc in Wildlife Resource Management, University of Calabar, Nigeria