Harmful algal blooms topic of One Health event

Sept. 23, 2021 | Written by Greg Tammen


OLATHE — Harmful algal blooms and their impact on humans, animals and the environment is the topic of the upcoming Kansas City One Health Day.

Kansas City One Health Day is from 3-6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 3 at Kansas State University's Olathe campus. It also will be livestreamed for those who are unable to attend. Tickets are $10 for the public or free for students and include heavy appetizers and refreshments.

The event is part of the One Health Day offerings that are held in more than 37 countries each November. These events focus on the complex interrelationships humans, animals and the environment share — referred to as One Health — highlight a particular topic that affects all three and look at the research, action and innovation needed to combat or adapt to the topic. Past topics have included climate change and extreme weather events; zoonotic diseases, such as Zika and coronaviruses; antibiotic resistance; and biosensors.

Harmful algal blooms, or HABs, are a growing problem in all 50 U.S. states, according to the U.S. Environmental and Protection Agency. The blooms, which occur when algae and cyanobacteria grow out of control in bodies of water, can be deadly to pets and nearby plant life, and cause mild to severe medical symptoms in humans who inhale them. Scientists are finding that climate change is leading to more

Experts in human and environmental health will discuss how these blooms negatively affect people and the world we live in. The three presenters also will be part of a roundtable discussion that will answer questions from the audience.

The event concludes with a student poster competition and networking opportunity. High school, undergraduate and graduate students who conduct One Health-related research will show a poster of their study and discuss the findings with attendees and a panel of judges for an opportunity to win a scholarship.

Kansas City One Health Day is developed through a partnership with Kansas State University's Olathe campus and College of Veterinary Medicine, BioNexus KC, BioKansas, the KU Edwards Campus and Frontiers: University of Kansas Clinical and Translational Science Institute.

The groups are working closely to promote and advance bioscience research and discovery in Greater Kansas City, which is home to more than 240 life science companies with approximately 30,000 employees. The region's scientists, companies and institutions regularly collaborate on life science research, helping further position the region as a national leader in One Health.

Register and learn more at olathe.k-state.edu/onehealthday.