Christopher M. Barker, Ph.D.


Assistant Adjunct Professor, Center for Vectorborne Diseases

Department of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology

School of Veterinary Medicine

Office: 1207 Vet Med 3A

Phone: (530) 752-0151

E-mail: cmbarker[at]ucdavis[dot]edu



  • Ecology and epidemiology of mosquitoborne viruses

  • Surveillance methods

  • Epidemiological modeling, typically using Bayesian approaches


Research Focus:

  • Climate and landscape factors driving mosquitoborne virus transmission

  • Forecasting and decision support systems for control of arboviruses

  • Development of process-based estimates of transmission risk

  • Mechanistic modeling of pathogen transmission

Recent Publications:

Smith DL, Perkins TA, Reiner RC, Barker CM, Niu T, Chaves LF, Ellis AM, George DB, Le Menach A, Pulliam JRC, Bisanzio D, Buckee C, Chiyaka C, Cummings DAT, Garcia AJ, Gatton ML, Gething PW, Hartley DM, Johnston G, Klein EY, Michael E, Lloyd AL, Pigott DM, Reisen WK, Ruktanonchai N, Singh BK, Stoller J, Tatem AJ, Kitron U, Godfray C, Cohen J, Hay SI, Scott TW. 2014. Recasting the Theory of Mosquito-Borne Pathogen Transmission Dynamics and Control. Trans Roy Soc Trop Med Hyg 108(4): 185-197. doi: 10.1093/trstmh/tru026

Townsend AK, Barker CM. 2014. Plastic and the nest entanglement of urban and agricultural crows. PLoS ONE 9(1): e88006. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0088006

Barker CM, Niu T, Reisen WK, Hartley DM. 2013. Data-driven modeling to assess receptivity for Rift Valley fever virus . PLoS Negl Trop Dis 7(11): e2515. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0002515

Thompson DR, de la Torre Juarez M, Barker CM, Holeman J, Lundeen S, Mulligan S, Painter TH, Podest E, Seidel FC, Ustinov E. 2013. Airborne imaging spectroscopy to monitor urban mosquito microhabitats. Remote Sensing of Environment 137: 226-233. doi:10.1016/j.rse.2013.06.015

Carrington LB, Armijos MV, Lambrechts L, Barker CM, Scott TW. 2013. Effects of fluctuating daily temperatures at critical thermal extremes on Aedes aegypti life-history traits . PLoS ONE 8(3): e58824. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0058824

Reiner RC, Perkins TA, Barker CM, Niu T, Chaves LF, Ellis AM, George DB, Le Menach A, Pulliam JRC, Bisanzio D, Buckee C, Chiyaka C, Cummings DAT, Garcia AJ, Gatton ML, Gething PW, Hartley DM, Johnston G, Klein EY, Michael E, Lindsay SW, Lloyd AL, Pigott DM, Reisen WK, Ruktanonchai N, Singh BK, Tatem AJ, Kitron U, Hay SI, Scott TW, Smith DL. 2013. A systematic review of mathematical models of mosquito-borne pathogen transmission: 1970–2010. J Roy Soc Interface 10.

Hartley DM, Barker CM, Le Menach A, Niu T, Gaff HD, Reisen WK. 2012. The effects of temperature on the emergence and seasonality of West Nile virus in California. Am J Trop Med Hyg 86(5): 884-894.

Smith DL, Battle KE, Hay SI, Barker CM, Scott TW, McKenzie FE. 2012. Ross, Macdonald, and a theory for the dynamics and control of mosquito-transmitted pathogens. PLoS Pathogens 8(4): e1002588. doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1002588

Wheeler SS, Vineyard MP, Barker CM, Reisen WK. 2012. Importance of recrudescent avian infection in West Nile virus overwintering: incomplete antibody neutralization of virus allows infrequent vector infection. J Med Entomol 49: 895-902.

Fechter-Leggett E, Nelms BM, Barker CM, Reisen WK. 2012. West Nile virus cluster analysis and vertical transmission in Culex pipiens complex mosquitoes in Sacramento and Yolo Counties, California, 2011. J Vector Ecol 37: 442-449.

Mayo CE, Mullens BA, Gerry AC, Barker CM, Mertens PC, Maan S, Maan N, Gardner IA, Guthrie AJ, MacLachlan NJ. 2012. The combination of abundance and infection rates of Culicoides sonorensis estimates risk of subsequent bluetongue virus infection of sentinel cattle on California dairy farms. Vet Parasitol 187: 295-301.

Mayo CE, Gardner IA, Mullens BA, Barker CM, Gerry AC, Guthrie AJ, MacLachlan NJ. 2012. Anthropogenic and meteorological factors influence vector abundance and prevalence of bluetongue virus infection of dairy cattle in California. Vet Microbiol 155: 158-164.

Thiemann TC, Wheeler SS, Barker CM, Reisen WK. 2011. Mosquito host selection varies seasonally with host availability and mosquito density. PLoS Negl Trop Dis  5(12): e1452. 

Brault AC, Langevin SA, Ramey WN, Fang Y, Beasley DWC, Barker CM, Sanders TA, Reisen WK, Barrett ADT, Bowen RA. 2011. Reduced avian virulence and viral replication of West Nile virus isolates from Mexico and Texas. Am J Trop Med Hyg  85: 758-767.

Langevin SA, Bowen RA, Ramey WN, Sanders TA, Maharaj PD, Fang Y, Cornelius J, Barker CM, Reisen WK, Beasley DW, Barrett AD, Kinney RM, Huang CY, Brault AC. 2011. Envelope and pre-membrane protein structural amino acid mutations mediate diminished avian growth and virulence of a Mexican West Nile virus isolate. J Gen Virol 92: 2810-2820.

Boyce WM, Vickers W, Morrison SA, Sillett TS, Caldwell L, Wheeler SS, Barker CM, Cummings R, Reisen WK. 2011. Surveillance for West Nile virus and vaccination of free-ranging Island Scrub-Jays (Aphelocoma insularis) on Santa Cruz Island, California. Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis  11: 1063-1068.

Carney RM, Ahearn SC, McConchie A, Glaser C, Jean C, Barker CM, Park BK, Padgett K, Kramer VL. 2011. Early warning system for West Nile virus risk areas, California, USA. Emerg Inf Dis  17: 1445-1454.

Barker CM, Kramer VL, Reisen WK. 2010. Decision support system for mosquito and arbovirus control in California. Earthzine: an IEEE publication fostering earth observation and global awareness

Barker CM, Johnson WO, Eldridge BF, Park BK, Melton FS, Reisen WK. 2010. Temporal connections between Culex tarsalis abundance and transmission of western equine encephalomyelitis virus in California. Am J Trop Med Hyg  82: 1185-1193.

Barker CM, Eldridge BF, Reisen WK. 2010. Seasonal abundance patterns of Culex tarsalis and Culex pipiens complex mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) in California. J Med Entomol  47: 759-768.

Kwan JL, Kluh S, Madon MB, Nguyen DV, Barker CM, Reisen WK. 2010. Sentinel chicken seroconversions track tangential transmission of West Nile virus to humans in the greater Los Angeles area. Am J Trop Med Hyg  83: 1137-1145.

Eisen L, Barker CM, Moore CG, Pape WJ, Winters AM, Cheronis N. 2010. Irrigated agriculture is an important risk factor for West Nile virus disease in the hyperendemic Larimer-Boulder-Weld area of north-central Colorado. J Med Entomol  47: 939-951.

Reisen WK, Thiemann T, Barker CM, Lu H, Carroll B, Fang Y, Lothrop HD. 2010. Effects of warm winter temperature on the abundance and gonotrophic activity of Culex  (Diptera: Culicidae) in California. J Med Entomol  47: 230-237.