Department of Medical Zoology

The research of the Department of Medical Zoology is oriented on the host-parasite-pathogen interactions. The research interests are also aimed on the continous ecological studies of ticks and tick borne pathogens. We are screening the ticks for the prevalence and genetic variability of different tick borne agents such as Borrelia, Anaplasma, Babesia, Francisella and Neoehrlichia. The zoonotic agents transmitted by other ectoparasites such as bartonella are studied as well. Moreover, the studies of vertebrates as reservoir hosts of zoonoses are also conducted. One of the goal is to understand the ecological and evolutionary relationships and causes of intra and inter specific variability in connection to the hosts and their parasites. We have previously satisfactorily completed and currently work on national and international projects (VEGA, APVV, as well as structural funds: Development of methods for detection of tick-borne pathogens and vaccine strategies directed toward tick control . Moreover we have participated in multilateral international projects of 6th and 7th Framework projects of European Union (EDEN, EDENnext) and in bilateral project with Czech Republic, Spain, Italy and Germany.

Head of the Department:
Mgr. Veronika Rusňáková Tarageľová, PhD., head of the Department, a senior researcher. She studies the ecology of reservoir hosts of tick borne agents and their circulation in natural foci. She also studies the interaction between the vectors pathogens and hosts in natural as well as laboratory conditions.

MVDr. Markéta Derdáková, PhD., a senior scientist. She is studying the ecology, molecular epidemiology and phylogenetic relationships of tick borne pathogens. She has worked on the development of diagnostic tools, PCR, PCR-RFLP, SSCP and realtime PCR that she had implemented to the laboratories at the Institute of Parasitology and Institute of Zoology of the SAS. She has also participated on the development of DNA chips for identification and diagnostics of tick transmitted bacterial pathogens. Moreover she has studied the interactions and co-evolution between the tick borne pathogens and their reservoir hosts in the natural habitats as well as in laboratory conditions.

Doc. RNDr. Michal Stanko, DrSc., a senior researcher. He is specialist on ecology of small mammals, mostly on the questions regarding the reproduction potential of small mammals. His research interests are aimed on interaction between parasites and hosts on a model group of small mammals, ticks (Ixodida), acari (Mesostigmata) and flees (Siphonaptera). He also studies fenology of ticks, seasonal dynamics of ticks in various types of habitats.

Mgr. Radovan Václav, PhD. is senior researcher. He studies the effects of ecological factors and evolutionary processes on interaction among parasites and hosts. Currently, he is working on project with the aim to understand the occurence and diversity of protozoan parasites (Apicomplexa, Haemosporidia) of birds under influence of specific connections among hosts, parasites and their vectors. Besides ecology of parasites he works on reproductive and population ecology of selected species of vertebrates.

Mgr. Diana Selyemová, PhD. is a researcher specialized in the ecology of ticks and tick borne pathogens and serological diagnostics. She participates in the laboratory experiments with model animals as well as in field studies.

MVDr. Yuliya M. Didyk, PhD., post-doctoral researcher from Ukraine. She studies the parasitology and interactions between the vectors and pathogens mostly in Ixodes and Dermacentor ticks. She studies their occurence in suburban and urban habitats of Ukraine.

Mgr. Michal Chvostáč is a PhD student. His main interests are MLST typing of Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. from various habitats of Europe. Supervisor: Marketa Derdakova, with the collaboration Dr. Gabriele Margos, the currator of MLST database.

Name / Position E-mail Phone
Derdáková, Markéta MVDr., PhD.

senior researcher 02/5930 2624
Didyk, Yuliya MVDr., PhD.

senior researcher 02/5930 2635
Chvostáč, Michal Mgr., PhD.

researcher 02/5930 2607
Kazimírová, Mária RNDr., CSc.

senior researcher 02/5930 2645
Mangová, Barbara Mgr., PhD.

senior researcher 02/5930 2635
Purgatová, Slávka Mgr.
Rajská, Petra Mgr., PhD.
Rusňáková Tarageľová, Veronika Mgr., PhD.

head of department, senior researcher 02/5930 2649
Selyemová, Diana Mgr., PhD.

senior researcher 02/5930 2649
Stanko, Michal doc. RNDr., DrSc.

leading researcher 055/6325 326
Šujanová, Alžbeta Mgr., PhD.

Zhovnerchuk, Olha Mgr., PhD.