Talk given by John Wares entitled, "Sea star wasting disease - transmission, causes, and host responses”
Abstract: An extraordinary marine pandemic has killed a majority of over 20 species of asteroid sea star on the Pacific coast of North America in the past 4 years. Given that many of these species drive the composition and abundance of the rest of the intertidal community, there has been a rapid response to try and understand this outbreak. I will talk briefly about what is known of the epidemiology and likely causal agents and factors, with a focus on the interaction between organismal stress and disease. Ongoing work is focused on the community response, the recovery of sea star populations, and host evolutionary responses to this disease.