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Katrina Hoyer

headshot of Katrina Hoyer
Professional Title: 
Associate Professor, Department of Molecular Cell Biology
My lab studies the mechanisms underlying immune dysfunction. During most of my career I have applied this interest to the mechanisms underlying autoimmune disease development, and since arriving at UC Merced eight years ago, also to that of Valley fever. Through research collaborations and interactions with community members and patients, I have become fascinated with this locally-endemic disease, for which very little is known. During the past eight years studying the immune dysfunction related to chronic coccidioidomycosis, I have given many public talks and scientific seminars on this topic, coauthored a review (1), published a research manuscript identifying biomarkers of disease outcome (2), and successfully participated in several individual and multi-PI grants. I have used my research to raise public awareness and action for Valley fever, and have organized (3) and participated in local and regional public forums,, mentored undergraduate and graduate students to similarly engage in public service, and contributed to local and regional news on Valley Fever (4). My efforts increased participation of public health departments and advocacy groups throughout the region, as well as from other UCs and Valley fever stakeholders in Arizona. I was a founding member in the UC Merced-led Valley fever regional workgroup which was an important stimulus to gaining a joint visit by NIH and CDC directors to SJV to address needs for Valley Fever services and research. CDC and NIH acknowledged that having UC Merced researchers active on this topic was critical to their attention.