2006 Student Research Conference:
19th Annual Student Research Conference

Science

The Effects of Antibiotic Introduction on The Feeding Efficiency of The American Dog Tick, Dermacentor variabilis
Kristi M. Teal*, Jenny L. Sandler, and Stephanie D. Pratt
Dr. Laura Fielden, Faculty Mentor

This project was designed to study whether antibiotic use in domesticated host animals affected the intestinal microbial communities of ticks. We hypothesized that antibiotic use in host species would be a detriment to the tick. This study employed an artificial feeding method to introduce antibiotics into the tick. Adult females of Dermacentor variabilis were artificially fed for twelve hours using capillary tubes containing serum albumin and the antibiotics Chlortetracycline and Sulfadiazine. After antibiotic introduction, ticks were placed on hosts and allowed to complete feeding. Engorged ticks were removed from the host and monitored for egg laying performance. The preliminary data has shown that antibiotics do not have a negative impact on the feeding efficiency. Ticks fed with Chlortetracycline were significantly heavier (t= 1.86, d.f. = 36, P< 0.05) than the control group indicating the Chlortetracycline treatment had a beneficial effect on the feeding efficiency while Sulfadiazine had no significant effect.

Keywords: D. variabilis, Chlorotetracylcin, Sulfadiazine, bacterial fauna, arthropods

Topic(s):Biology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 27-1
Location: VH 1408
Time: 9:45

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