Catherine McCann

Veterinary Epidemiologist
Future Farming - Epidemiology Research Unit

Research interests 

I am interested the One Health Perspective of epidemiology - my particular research interests are in the epidemiology of vector-borne diseases and zoonoses

I qualified as a veterinary surgeon at the University of Liverpool in 1980 and after working in companion animal practice for a several years I took up the position of Veterinary Officer with Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) in St Lucia. The 2 ½ years I spent in this role ignited my interest in ticks and tick-borne diseases, epidemiology and livestock health and production in the Tropics.

I completed the MSc in Tropical Animal Production and Health at the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for Tropical Veterinary Medicine; my MSc thesis was on the epidemiology of Rift Valley fever.

Subsequently I worked in Vanuatu as a Government Veterinary Officer and in St Lucia where I worked on a college farm which was used to instruct tertiary level students in all aspect of agriculture. Here I worked in a team to establish small-scale poultry, sheep, pig and fish enterprises.

I returned to the UK in 2002 and completed an MSc in Epidemiology in 2005 (University of London) and PhD in 2010 (University of Liverpool).

Prior to joining the ERU in June 2017, I worked on five applied research projects in veterinary epidemiology (the protozoan parasite Neospora caninum and the liver fluke Fasciola hepatica) and public health (influenza sero-epidemiology and gastrointestinal disease surveillance).

Research Projects

  • Scottish Government Strategic Research Programme
    Working within Theme 2 on Research Deliverable 2.2.2 – Evaluation of livestock health; 2.2.6 -  Animal Disease Epidemiology Research Deliverable 2.3.3 – Disease threats in the environment Research Deliverable
  • E. coli O157 super-shedding in cattle and mitigation of human risk
    Food Standards Agency and Food Standards Scotland-funded work to estimate prevalence of Escherichia coli O157 among herds in Great Britain producing cattle for slaughter, to characterise the organisms collected in terms of their genetic evolution since previous Scottish surveys and their similarities to E. coli O157 isolated from human clinical cases, and to determine potential intervention measures to mitigate risk to humans from infection with verocytotoxigenic E. coli O157. Collaboration with the Roslin Institute, Moredun Research Institute, University of Edinburgh, University of Glasgow, BioSS, Health Protection Scotland and Public Health England.
  • BBSRC Industry Partnership Award: Improving the control of liver fluke infection in cattle in the UK.  Work package 4, involves the use of industry databases and the development of economic models to assess the impact of fluke and possible control measures on the UK cattle industry
  • Lyme App KE (Universities Innovation Fund): Developing digital KE resources for Lyme disease prevention in Scotland

PhD Thesis title

“The development of spatial models for fascioliasis in England and Wales using Geographic Information Systems”

Teaching

  • Epidemiology to Medical Students at the American International Medical University (St Lucia)
  • Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry to Agriculture students at the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College (St Lucia)

Selected publications

  • McCann, C.M., Clough, H., Baylis, M., Williams, D.J.L. (2018) Development and validation of a protocol to identify and recruit participants into a large scale study on liver fluke in cattle. BMC Vet Res. 2018 Jun 15;14(1):185. doi: 10.1186/s12917-018-1511-3.
  • Inns, T., Cleary, P., Bundle, N., Foulkes, S., Sharp, A., Utsi, L., McBrien, C., Teagle, R., Waldram, A., Williams, C., McCann, C., Smith, R., Saleh, S., McCarthy, N.l, Vivancos, R., Hawker, J., Decraene, V. (2018) Novel application of the matched case–control design to compare food supply chains during an Escherichia coli O157 outbreak, United Kingdom, 2016. Euro Surveill.. 2018;23(18):pii=17-00195. https://doi.org/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2018.23.18.17-00195
  • MacPherson, P., Valentine, K., Chadderton, V., Dardamissis, E., Doig, I., Fox, A., McCann, C. M. (2017) An Outbreak of Pseudomonas Aeruginosa Infection Linked to a “Black Friday” Piercing Event. PLoS Currents, 9, currents.outbreaks.51af24797f6f856a9861b5ddabc7db58. http://doi.org/10.1371/currents.outbreaks.51af24797f6f856a9861b5ddabc7db58
  • Turner, J., Howell, A., McCann, C., Caminade, C., Roger G. Bowers, R.G., Williams, W., Baylis1, M., (2016) A model to assess the efficacy of vaccines for control of liver fluke infection. Sci Rep. 6::23345. doi: 10.1038/srep23345
  • Claridge, J., Diggle, P., McCann, C.M., Mulcahy, G., Flynn, R., McNair, J., Strain, S., Welsh, M, Baylis, M., Williams, D. J.L., (2012) Fasciola hepatica is associated with failure to detect bovine tuberculosis in dairy cattle. Nat Commun 3, Article Number:853doi:10.1038/ncomms1840
  • McCann, C.M., Baylis, M., Williams, D.J.L. (2010). The development of linear regression models using environmental variables to explain the spatial distribution of Fasciola hepatica infection in dairy herds in England and Wales. Int J Parasitol. 40(9): 1021 – 1028.
  • McCann, C.M., Baylis, M., Williams, D.J.L. (2010). The seroprevalence and spatial distribution of Fasciola hepatica infected dairy herds in England and Wales. Vet Rec.  166(20): 612 - 617.
  • McCann C.M., Vyse A.J., Salmon R.L., Thomas D., Williams D.J., McGarry J.W., Pebody R., Trees A.J. (2008). Lack of serologic evidence of Neospora caninum in humans, England. Emerg Infect Dis. 14: 978 – 980.
  • McCann, C.M., McAllister, M.M., Gondim, L.F., Smith, R.F., Cripps, P.J., Kipar, A., Williams, D.J.L., Trees, A.J. (2007). Neospora caninum in cattle: experimental infection with oocysts can result in exogenous transplacental infection, but not endogenous transplacental infection in the subsequent pregnancy. Int J Parasitol 37(14):1631-9.
  • McCann, C. (1991) Animal Quarantine Management in Vanuatu. Asian Livestock, 16(6): 61-65.

See SRUC's Repositary

Dr Catherine McCann

Future Farming Systems Epidemiology Research Unit

Address: Plot 10, An Lòchran
Inverness Campus
Inverness IV2 5NA

Telephone: 01463 246 072

E-mail: Catherine.McCann@sruc.ac.uk