Veterinary Parasitology

Group Leader

Prof Diana Williams

About our research

The Veterinary Parasitology Research Group is involved in research into several aspects of parasitic disease.

Professor Diana William's research interests include the immunology and control of Neospora caninum – a protozoan parasite causing abortion in cattle; and Fasciola hepatica – a major cause of production losses in sheep and cattle and now recognised by the World Health Organisation as an emerging and serious zoonosis.

Dr Jane Hodgkinson's research interests focus on anthelmintic resistance. Primarily this is in the equid host - involving the cyathostome nematodes but has recently extended to include helminth parasites of ruminants – particularly the trematode, Fasciola hepatica. A particular interest relates to the heterogeneity of parasite populations, for example species complexity in cyathostome populations and in how parasite populations respond to drug selection pressure.

Dr Ben Makepeace's research focus is the chemotherapy, immunology and evolutionary biology of onchocerciasis, a major parasitic disease that affects 37 million people, most of whom live in West & Central Africa. Onchocerciasis is also known as ‘River Blindness’ because it is transmitted by blackflies that breed in fast-flowing rivers; and in the most severe cases, the parasitic worm responsible for the disease (Onchocerca volvulus) can cause irreversible blindness.