Date of Award

Summer 8-5-2023

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science - Biology



First Advisor

Dr. Robert Wiggers

Second Advisor

Dr. Zeljko Radulović

Third Advisor

Dr. Dennis Gravatt

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Jason Bruck


The number of cases of tick-borne diseases is increasing in the United States. Many efforts to control ticks have been made and are continuously being developed. These methods include surveillance of ticks and detection of the tick-borne pathogens.This study examined hard ticks in Nacogdoches, Texas, to test for the presence of Rickettsia sp. 47 ticks were collected from vegetation by flagging and their species, sex, and developmental stage were determined using available keys. Individual ticks were processed for nucleic acid extraction and molecular detection of Rickettsia sp. using PCR-based methods. The citrate cynthease gene, 17kDa gene, and outer membrane protein A gene were used as genetic markers. All 47 ticks were tested with these markers and out of 13 Amblyomma americanum ticks 4 were positive, 9 Dermacentor variabillis ticks 1 was positive, 6 Amblyomma maculatum ticks 4 were positive, and out of 19 Ixodes scapularis ticks 12 were positive.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Included in

Biology Commons



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