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Photo: Karen Shapiro

Karen Shapiro- BS, DVM, MPVM, PhD
Lecturer and Assistant Research Scientist
Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology

5303 VM3A
Davis, CA 95616


Research Focus

Areas of research interest include transport and fate of zoonotic pathogens in watersheds and coastal ecosystems; effects of landscape change and climate variability on disease transmission; impacts of water scarcity and impaired quality on human and animal population health, and food safety.

Topics of research projects include:

Zoonotic infectious diseases

Waterborne infectious diseases

Food safety

Wildlife population health

Human public health

Specialty Focus

Waterborne zoonoses


2011 MPVM Epidemiology, University of California, Davis, California
2009 PhD Comparative Pathology, University of California, Davis, California
2002 DVM Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, California
1997 BS Wildlife Conservation, University of California, Davis, California

Honors and Awards

2010 Oceans and Human Health Postdoctoral Fellowship
2008-2009 Floyd and Mary Schwall Dissertation Year Fellowship in Medical Research in Comparative Pathology
2008 International EcoHealth Forum Full Travel Scholarship
2008 Traum Microbiology Scholarship
2008 Walter Carr Award, Outstanding Student Paper, Northern California Parasitologists Annual Meeting
2008 Consortium for Women and Research Travel Award
2006-2009 School of Veterinary Medicine Graduate Student Support Scholarship
2005-2009 Graduate Group of Comparative Pathology Student Block Fund Scholarship


California Veterinary Medical Association, Boarded

Active Research Grants

Co-Principal Investigator, Science-based monitoring for produce safety: Comparing indicators and pathogens in water, soil, and crops, Stefan Wuertz (Principal Investigator), Center fro Produce Safety/Binational Agriculture Research and Development Fund (BARD)

Co-Principal Investigator, Roles of a marine host cycle and particle aggregation in transmission of zoonotic pathogens in coastal ecosystems, Patricia Conrad (Principal Investigator), National Science Foundation, Ecology of Infectious Disease

Co-Principal Investigator, Noroviruses in coastal waters: Implications for seafood cultivation and human health, Stefan Wuertz (Principal Investigator), California Sea Grant

Most Recent 10 Publications

  • Link Icon 2013 Hogan, J.N., Daniels, M.E., Watson, F.G., Oates, S.C., Miller, M.A., Conrad, P.A., Shapiro, K., Hardin, D., Dominik, C., Melli, A., Jessup, D.A., Miller, W.A Hydrologic and Vegetative Removal of Cryptosporidium parvum, Giardia lamblia, and Toxoplasma gondii Surrogate Microspheres in Coastal Wetlands Applied and Environmental Microbiology,
  • Link Icon 2013 Shapiro, K., Miller, W.A. Silver, M.W. Odagiri, O. Largier, J.L., Conrad P.A., and J.A.K. Mazet Association of zoonotic pathogens with fresh, estuarine, and marine macroaggregates Microbial Ecology,
  • Link Icon 2012 Shapiro, K. Climate and coastal habitat change: A recipe for a dirtier ocean Marine Pollution Bulletin,
  • Link Icon 2012 Shapiro, K., Miller, M., Mazet, J. Temporal association between land-based runoff events and California sea otter (Enhydra lutris nereis) protozoal mortalities Journal of Wildlife Diseases,
  • Link Icon 2012 Shapiro K, Silver MW, Largier JL, Mazet JAK Association of Toxoplasma gondii oocysts with fresh, estuarine, and marine macroaggregates Limnology & Oceanography,
  • Link Icon 2010 Shapiro, K., Conrad, P.A., Mazet, J.A.K., Wallender W.W., Miller W.A., and J.L. Largier Effect of estuarine wetland degradation on transport of Toxoplasma gondii surrogates from land to sea Journal of Applied and Environmental Microbiology,
  • Link Icon 2010 Shapiro K, Mazet JAK, Schriewer A, Wuertz S, Fritz H, Miller WA, Largier L, Conrad PA Detection of Toxoplasma gondii oocysts and surrogate microspheres in water using ultrafiltration and capsule filtration Water Research,
  • Link Icon 2009 Shapiro K, Largier L, Mazet JAK, Bernt W, Ell JR, Melli A, Conrad PA Surface properties of Toxoplasma gondii oocysts and surrogate microspheres Journal of Applied and Environmental Microbiology,