- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
Winokur delivered her presentation on “Thermal Preferences of Aedes aegypti Mosquitoes.”
Ae. aegypti, commonly known as the yellow-fever mosquito, can spread Zika, dengue, chikungunya, Mayaro, yellow fever and other viruses. Originating in Africa, it is now widespread in tropical, subtropical and temperate regions throughout the world.
Winokur's abstract: “Mosquito-borne pathogen transmission models used to inform control decisions are only applicable if we incorporate the temperatures mosquitoes experience. However, mosquito thermal preferences are not well resolved. We studied Aedes aegypti thermal preferences and found that female Ae. aegypti generally avoided temperatures >30°C on a gradient in the lab, and chose relatively cooler microhabitats in the field as ambient temperature increased. Incorporating these preferences could improve the accuracy of transmission models for Ae. aegypti-borne viruses.”
The Hollandsworth Prize memorializes Gerald Hollandsworth, a past president of the West Central Mosquito and Vector Control Association who lost his battle to cancer.
A UC Davis alumna, Winokur received her doctorate in entomology, with a designated emphasis in the biology of vector-borne diseases, in November 2022, studying with Professor Barker of the Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology, School of Veterinary Medicine.
She delivered her exit seminar, as part of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology weekly seminars, in October on "Temperature Drives Transmission of Mosquito-borne Pathogens: Improving Entomological Estimates for Aedes aegypti-borne Virus Transmission Risk."
As a postdoc in the Barker lab, Winokur is working with VectorSurv (https://vectorsurv.org/), and has a fellowship from Pacific Southwest Center of Excellence in Vector-Borne Diseases (https://pacvec.us/), focused on "Enriching Practical Learning Resources for Entomological, Medical, and One-Health Curricula."
Olivia received her bachelor's degree in May of 2015 from Cornell University where she was an interdisciplinary studies major (environmental effects on human health). She enrolled in the UC Davis graduate program in 2016.
At UC Davis, Winokur served as the 2019-2020 president of the Entomology Graduate Student Association and as a 2020-2022 committee member of the UC Davis Entomology Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging. She co-founded the Girls' Outdoor Adventure in Leadership and Science (GOALS) in 2017 and continues to serve in leadership roles. GOALS is a free two-week summer science program for high school girls and gender expansive youth from backgrounds underrepresented in STEM fields. They learn science, outdoors skills, and leadership hands-on while backpacking in Sequoia National Park.