Dawn Wesson    

Dawn Wesson, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Tropical Medicine
Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine
JBJ Building, Room 509
1324 Tulane Avenue
New Orleans, LA 70112
Phone: (504) 988-2643
Fax: (504) 988-6686

Wesson Laboratory Website

Personal Statement:

My background in medical and molecular entomology and vector biology has led to my role as a principal investigator on many research projects on vector-borne diseases (particularly dengue, Chagas and West Nile virus), instructor of graduate courses on vector biology and ecology at the Department of Tropical Medicine at the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, director of the training program in vector-borne diseases at Tulane, and director of Tulane's Vector-Borne Infectious Diseases Initiative. My research interests include the ecology of arbovirus transmission, host-pathogen co-evolution, development of novel vector control strategies and tools, and examining the effects of vector-borne pathogen infection on human pregnancy outcomes. I have mentored more than 120 graduate (MSPH and PhD) students and numerous post-doctoral researchers.

Research Interests:

Ecology of arbovirus transmission; host-pathogen coevolution; development of novel vector control strategies and tools; effect of arbovirus infection on human pregnancy outcome; medical entomology; novel vector control methods

Educational Background:

  • BA, North Central College, Naperville, IL, 1983
  • MS, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1985
  • PhD, University of Notre Dame, South Bend, IL, 1991

Professional Achievements:

  • 1997-2001 American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, American Committee on Medical Entomology Council
  • 1999-2013 Board of Directors member, Louisiana Mosquito Control Association,
  • 2000-2002 Vice president and president, Louisiana Mosquito Control Association
  • 2000-2003 Vice chair and chair, Entomological Society of America, medical & veterinary entomology section secretary
  • 2000-2005 Member, Tropical Medicine and Parasitology Study Section, NIH
  • 2002-2006 Member, Louisiana Arbovirus Working Group, Arbovirus Surveillance Subcommittee
  • 2003 Woman of the Year, City Business New Orleans
  • 2005-2006 Member, Gulf War and Health: Infectious Disease Committee, Institute of Medicine of the National Academies
  • 2007-2013 New Orleans Mosquito, Termite and Rodent Control Board
  • 2007-2013 St. Tammany Parish Mosquito Control Board of Directors, Advisor

Selected Publications:

View Dr. Wesson's publications at her NCBI profile page.

Level of Instruction:


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Department of Tropical Medicine, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2301, New Orleans, LA 70112, 504-988-3558