Anaïs Oliva


PhD in Remote Sensing


Yannick Huot

Field of research

Evaluation of Earth Observation Indicators for the Analysis of the Distribution of Water-Related Infectious Diseases in Canadian Lakes

Water-related infectious diseases can be directly transmitted to humans through the presence of different pathogens in lakes, such as coliforms (e.g. Escherichia coli). Lakes can also play an indirect role in maintaining the risk of disease spread to humans. Wild birds are potential sources of avian influenza virus risk and can also introduce Campylobacter species through their faeces. Thus, in lake public health, one of the greatest challenges is to be able to prevent the emergence of epidemics caused by multiple pathogens from different sources.

In tele-epidemiology, remote sensing data are associated with environmental determinants for the assessment of disease distribution (e.g. contamination from agricultural and urban runoff, rainfall events that cause runoff, etc.). These very diverse relationships have specific impacts on lake water quality and therefore affect the abundance of disease-causing bacteria.

The main objective of this thesis is to compare lake data with the presence/abundance of each bacterium and virus along three axes:

  • Identify sources of contamination and assess their spatial and temporal variability;
  • Develop Earth observation indicators that would predict lake water conditions;
  • Determine correlations between occurrence, antimicrobial resistance genes and the results of other studies (e.g. presence of antibiotics, algae blooms, other toxins).


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