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Foley, Desmond

Research Entomologist

Molecular systematics, distribution modelling, biogeography, and spatial ecology of mosquitoes

Geographic Focus

  • Global  Transnational Region

Professional Biography

  • Research Interests:
    •    GIS and mapping of the geographic distribution of arthropod disease vectors
    •    Curation and databasing of collection data and habitat suitability models of arthropod disease vectors
    •    Phylogenetics, molecular evolution, systematics, and historical biogeography of Culicidae, especially Anopheles
    •    Development of identification tools for the Culicidae, including Lucid computer keys
    •    Ecology and epidemiology of arthropod disease vectors
    A relatively recent research activity of mine involves the curation and mapping of collection records for mosquitoes, ticks, sand flies, mites and fleas, and the development of habitat suitability models for individual species (see vectormap@si.edu). Understanding the distribution of vector hazard is powerful intelligence for anticipating risks for immunologically naive personnel entering vector-borne disease endemic regions of the world. Knowing what vector species occur in a given region is also important, and my other research interests include the development of computer identification tools for vector species, and explorations of the ecology, evolution, and epidemiology of vector species, especially those belonging to complexes of cryptic species.