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Mikayla Plishka

B.A., Hons


Mikayla is an Msc epidemiology student in the Department of Population Medicine. She completed an Hons. BA at the University of Toronto in 2017, where she majored in Health Studies and minored in Bioethics and Environmental Biology. Early on in her undergraduate eduaction, she became interested in statistics and infectious disease dynamics in populations. During her degree, she became a researcher and writer for the University of Toronto's student-run global health magazine, where she wrote and published articles. She was also involved in various research projects at Toronto's SickKids Hospital, one of which she helped build a database of children with urological conditions. During her final year of her undergraduate degree, she was involved in a research project at the University of Toronto, investigating the prevalence of chronic comorbidities in severe flaviviral infections. The quantitative courses undertaken during her degree, and her research experience, has led her to the field of epidemiology. 

Research Interests

Mikayla is currently completing her Master's of Science in epidemiology with Dr. Jan Sargeant. Her research interests focus on zoonotic diseases as it relates to food safety.  In her current research, she will quantify the burden of Campylobacter spp. in livestock on farms in the United States and Canada and utilize statistical methods to investigate the overall prevalence of the bacteria across the two countries.  The results can be used to direct future intervention studies to reduce the prevalence of Campylobacter spp. on farms and improve food safety. 

Mikayla is also interested in mathematical modelling of infectious diseases. 

Peer-Reviewed Publications:

Badawi, A., Velummailum, R., Ryoo, S. G., Senthinathan, A., Yaghoubi, S., Vasileva, D., Ostermeier, E., Plishka, M.,  Soosaipillai, M., Arora, P. (2018). Prevalence of chronic comorbidities in dengue fever and West Nile virus: A systematic review and meta-analysis. PloS one13(7), e0200200. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0200200

Non Peer-Reviewed Publications:

Plishka, M., Sargeant, J. M., Greer, Amy., Winder, Charlotte. (2019). The prevalence of Campylobacter in live chicken, swine, turkey, and cattle on farms run under commercial conditions in the United States and Canada: a protocol for a systematic review and meta-analysis. Syreaf.org. 

Professional Experience & Honours


Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) Scholarship 2018