Parasitism and Animal Behavior

Fifty and Better FABulous Summer Lecture Series

Parasitism and Animal Behavior

Parasites are some of the most complex and misunderstood organisms on earth. By definition, they subsist by living off of another organism, and it has been said that a good parasite will not kill its host (until it no longer needs it). Parasites can have many different effects on their hosts and there is a parasite for most organisms. What are some of these effects? In this lecture, we will discuss the effect of parasites on humans, insects and other animals’ behaviors. Cases will be presented and discussed. 

Paloma Vargas, PhD, earned her Master of Science and doctoral degrees from the New York University Sackler Institute for Graduate Biomedical Sciences with a focus on parasitology, and BS Biology from the University of Texas at El Paso.

Vargas serves as the dean of Mathematics and Natural Sciences at San Diego Mesa College and has more than 10 years of teaching experience and over 15 years of experience in research. Her graduate and post-doctoral work focused on host-pathogen interactions of both parasitic amoeba (E. histolytica) and Legionella pneumophila, the causative agent of Legionnaire’s Disease.

Vargas is an anti-racist in training, centers culturally relevant pedagogy in her teaching and is an active member of the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Latinos and Native Americans in Science and of the Alliance of Hispanic-Serving Institute Educators.

Registration is required. Each independent, 2-hour lecture is $10.

Fifty and Better was designed to offer university-level courses and lectures (no tests, no homework) taught by experts in the field, and to host social engagement activities for people age 50 and older. All two-hour lectures in the FABulous Summer Lecture Series are open to all ages.


Register by July 8 by 1 p.m.

Sponsored By
Fifty and Better


Christina Tierney