UC Davis Media Sources for Warm-Weather Safety

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With warmer days here and summer around the corner, the University of California, Davis, has sources for media seeking information on summer safety including protection from the sun and mosquitoes, safety in the water and food preparation safety practices.

Food safety, inside and outside the home

Linda Harris is a cooperative extension specialist, food safety microbiologist and chair of the UC Davis Department of Food Science and Technology. She can discuss general food safety issues including those related to home, food service or the food industry and related regulatory issues. Her laboratory conducts research on foodborne pathogens such as Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes and their control in fresh fruits, vegetables and tree nuts. Contact: [email protected]530-754-9485

Mosquitos and repellent

Mosquitoes that can transmit multiple viruses including dengue, yellow fever, Zika and West Nile, smell and taste DEET, a leading repellent, with their nose (antennae) and feet when they approach and land on human skin. DEET is shorthand for the chemical N, N-diethyl-meta-toluamide, the active ingredient in many insect repellents that make mosquitoes stay away.

UC Davis entomologist Walter Leal has done pioneering work on insects’ sense of smell (olfaction). Leal’s group has identified and characterized many of the genes and proteins involved in detecting odors in antennae. His team identified the exact chemical receptor for DEET odor as well as identifying some possible new candidate repellents. More information in the UC Davis Egghead blog here. He can discuss his mosquito research with the media. He appeared in a recent public radio story. Contact: [email protected]; 530-752-7755

Skin cancer

Dr. Amanda Kirane is a fellowship-trained complex general surgical oncologist can talk about melanoma and other skin cancers.

She passionately believes in personalized medicine using evidence-based best practice to tailor treatment to each individual patient. Kirane’s academic interests include basic and translational science research in melanoma and sarcoma with specific interest in mechanisms of evasive resistance, tumor microenvironment signaling and immune response. Contact: Dorsey Griffith, senior public information office, UC Davis Health, [email protected], 916-734-9118 

Water safety

Water safety, life jacket fittings, drowning prevention and other issues can be addressed by Misael Chavarin, community education specialist with the UC Davis Trauma Prevention and Outreach Department. Contact: [email protected]