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Kurt Vandegrift

Kurt Vandegrift

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Assistant Research Professor

W239 Millennium Science Complex
University Park, PA 16801
Phone: (814)574-9852
Lab Address: W239a Millennium Science Complex
Lab: Hudson

Graduate Programs

M.S. Poultry Science 2003. The Pennsylvania State University. Dr. William B. Roush

PhD. Biology 2008. The Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Peter J. Hudson (FRS)


  1. Biology and Psychology BS Juniata College
  2. Poultry Science MS
  3. Biology PhD

Postdoc Training

  1. EcoHealth Alliance New York NY. Dr. Peter Daszak

Research Interests

My project deals with the ecology of infectious diseases and parasites in small mammals. I am investigating:

  • Are there key hosts for parasites and disease in the population?
  • Who are those key hosts and why?
  • How do key hosts affect disease spread?
  • Are there hot spots or hot times for transmission?
  • How do the communities of parasites associated with a host species interact with each other?
  • How do parasites influence disease susceptibility?
  • Can gastrointestinal nematodes drive the population cycles of their hosts?
  • What unknown viral diversity resides in small mammal reservoirs and their host jumping parasites?
  • Do these yet to be described viruses play a role in transmission of other human associated vector-borne zoonotic parasites?
  • How do the viromes of individuals and populations assemble?

Selected Publications

Vandegrift, K.J, and P.J. Hudson. 2008. Response to enrichment, type and timing: small mammals vary in their response to a springtime cicada but not a carbohydrate pulse. The Journal of Animal Ecology 78(1):202-209.

Vandegrift, K.J., T.R. Raffel, and P.J. Hudson. 2008. Parasites prevent summer breeding in white-footed mice, Peromyscus leucopus. Ecology 89(8):2251-2258.

Vandegrift, K.J. and P.J. Hudson 2008. The population biology of Pterygodermatities peromysci and other gastro-intestinal helminths in free living white-footed mice, Peromyscus leucopus in central Pennsylvania.  International Journal for Parasitology. 39 (11):1253-1262.

Nicholas M. Fountain-Jones, Will Pearce, Luis Escobar, Scott Carver, Simona Kraberger, Katherine Worsley-Tonks, Ana Alba-Casals, Kurt Vandegrift, Monica Papes, Jonathan Davies, Meggan E. Craft. Towards an eco-phylogenetic framework for infectious disease ecology. (Accepted to Biological Reviews).

Sheetal Trivedi, Satyapramod Murthy, Himanshu Sharma, Alex S. Hartlage, Sashi Gadi, Arvind Kumar,  Peter Simmonds, Lokendra V. Chauhan, Troels K. H. Scheel, Eva Billerbeck, Peter D. Burbelo, Charles M. Rice, Christopher M. Walker, W. Ian Lipkin, Kurt Vandegrift, John M. Cullen  and Amit Kapoor. 2017. Viral persistence, liver disease and host response in Hepatitis C-like virus rat model. Hepatology (in press)

Kinsella JM, Vandegrift KJ, Grant LK, Bozick BA & Hudson PJ (2008) Gastrointestinal helminths of the masked Shrew, Sorex cinereus, from Pennsylvania. Comparative Parasitology 75: 141-144.

Vandegrift KJ, Cravener TL, Hulet RM & Roush WB (2003). An Analysis of the nonlinear dynamics of daily broiler growth and feed intake. Poultry Science 82: 1091-1099.

Hosseini, P., S.H. Sokolow, K.J. Vandegrift, A.M. Kilpatrick, P.D. Daszak 2010. Predictive power of air travel and socio-economic data for early pandemic spread. PLoS Pathogens. 5(9):1-8.

Vandegrift, K.J.,
S.H. Sokolow, P.D. Daszak, A.M. Kilpatrick. 2010. Ecology of influenza viruses in a changing world. Annals of the New York Academy of Science. 1195: 113-128. 

Vandegrift, K.J., P. Hosseini, and P. Daszak, Predicting emerging diseases in the twenty-first Century: The case of zoonotic influenza, in The Domestic and International Impacts of the 2009-H1N1 Influenza A Pandemic: Global Challenges, Global Solutions: Workshop Summary, I.O. Medicine, Editor. 2010, National Academy of Sciences, Institute of Medicine: Washington DC. pp. 111-119.

Vandegrift, K.J., Wale, N., Epstein, J. 2011. Bridging the Gaps: An ecological and conservation perspective on the application of recent advances in virology. Viruses  3(4): 379-397.

Bridge, E.S., Kelly, J.F., Xiao, X.M., Takekawa, J.Y., Hill, N.J., Yamage, M., Haque, E.U., Islam, M.A., Mundkur, T., Yavuz, K.E., Leader, P., Leung, C.Y.H., Smith, B., Spragens, K.A., Vandegrift, K.J., Hosseini, P.R., Saif, S. Mohsanin, S., Mikolon, A., Islam, A., George, A., Sivananinthaperumal, B., Daszak, P., Newman, S.H. 2014. Bird migration and avian influenza: A comparison of hydrogen stable isotopes and satellite tracking methods. Ecological Indicators 45: 266-273.

Vandegrift, K.J., J.T. Critchlow, D.A., Friedman, A. Kapoor, P.J. Hudson. 2016.  Peromyscus as a model system for human hepatitis C: An opportunity to advance our understanding of a complex host parasite system. Seminars in Cell and  Developmental Biology (in press).

Behnke, J.M., Stewart, A., Bajer, A., Grzybek, M., Harris, P.D., Lowe, A., Ribas, A., Smales L., Vandegrift, K.J. 2015. Bank voles (Myodes glareolus) and house mice (Mus musculus musculus; M-m. domesticus) in Europe are each parasitized by their own distinct species of Aspiculuris (Nematoda, Oxyurida). Parasitology. 142(12): 1493-1505.

Kapoor, A., P. Simmonds, T. K. H. Scheel, B. Hjelle, J. M. Cullen, P.D. Burbelo, L.V. Chauhan, R. Duraisamy, M.S. Leon, K. Jain, K.J. Vandegrift, C.H. Calisher, C.M. Rice, W.I. Lipkin. 2013. Identification of Rodent Homologs of Hepatitis C Virus and Pegiviruses. MBIO 4(2): e00216.