Ming-Shan (Cindy) Tsai

Research Interests

My research interest lies in wildlife disease ecology, conservation medicine and conservation biology. I am particularly interested in the interactions between pathogens and hosts, especially from the evolutionary perspective. I obtained my MSc degree in Wildlife Conservation and Health University of Bristol in 2015. After graduation, I worked as research assistants for 3 years in the Wildlife Conservation Institute, National Pintung University of Science and Technology and the Conservation Research Center, Taipei Zoo in Taiwan. 

My DPhil project will look into frequently neglected sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in wild carnivores and their impacts to the hosts, using free-ranging European badgers (meles meles) as a wildlife model. This project aims to explore how viral and bacterial STIs affect population dynamics through several perspectives such as reproductive outcome, microbiome, host pathogen coevolution using techniques like pedigree analysis, sperm quality analysis and high throughput sequencing. This project will enable us to not only gain more understanding on STIs' impacts and their role on pathogen transmission route evolution, but also novel insight to wildlife disease management for conservation purposes.

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