Agricultural Organic Dust Exposure and COVID-19 Infection
Summary: By the end of 2021, COVID-19 has caused over 51 million infections and 805,000 deaths in the US. Pre-existing lung disease, such as COPD, has been linked to more severe COVID-19 symptoms and poor outcomes. Prior research has shown that agricultural workers, especially those working in livestock production, have an increased risk for inflammatory lung disease because of exposure to inhaled organic dust. In this webinar presentation, Dr. Wyatt will share his research on swine production workers and explore their risk for COVID-19 infection and severe disease due to existing dust-induced lung inflammation.
Intended Audience: ag health and safety professionals, rural healthcare providers, doctors, nurses, ag producers, and others working in livestock production
Objectives: At the end of the webinar, participants will be able to…
- Explore the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 infection
- Connect how lung inflammation impacts the severity of COVID-19
- Describe how the exposome alters lung innate defense against viruses
Todd Wyatt, PhD
Deputy Director- Central States Center for Agricultural Health and Safety (CS-CASH), Professor and Chair Department of Environmental, Agricultural & Occupational Health- University of Nebraska Medical Center, Research Career Scientist-Nebraska-Western Iow
Todd Wyatt, PhD is professor and interim Chair of the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Public Health Department of Environmental, Agricultural and Occupational Health. He serves as a Research Career Scientist at the VA Nebraska-Western Iowa Healthcare System and is the Deputy Director of the Central States Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (CS-CASH). Dr. Wyatt’s research examines agricultural organic dust exposure and lung injury in the workplace. His research also focuses on chronic inflammatory lung disease caused by dual-substance use of alcohol and cigarettes. Because chronic exposure to alcohol and/or cigarette smoke significantly impairs normal lung defenses against inhaled environmental toxins and pollutants, he seeks to examine the impact of combination exposures in the workplace when workers both smoke and drink alcohol. Having earned a PhD in Pathology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and completing Postdoctoral training in Physiology at Vanderbilt University, Dr. Wyatt has been on faculty at Nebraska for over 26 years where he has published 175 articles on the topic of lung disease.