Tick Talk Highlights Dr. Rebekah Taylor's Research

Oct 31, 2023 2:17 PM



For its Science Week, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources recently visited Western Maryland to learn more about the increasing prevalence of ticks in the area and about a community program designed to highlight the issue to inform local residents. 

DNR and FSU are working together on an initiative to study the rising prevalence of ticks and Lyme disease in Western Maryland. 

Dr. Rebekah Taylor, an associate professor and chair of FSU’s Department of Biology, leads the project and works with students to test ticks submitted to her lab for Lyme disease. Taylor noted that many residents in Western Maryland aren’t as familiar with tick safety and preparedness since ticks were historically rare in the area. The data collected by her team is used to inform medical professionals and citizens about the increasing rates of Lyme in ticks in the area. She said about 40 percent of the ticks tested in her lab end up being positive for Lyme disease. Taylor has a background in immunology and started studying ticks after her son contracted Lyme disease from a tick bite. 

Learn more about DNR’s Science Week.