Carmel Witte, Ph.D.


Carmel Witte serves San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance as a Scientist in Disease Investigations. In this role, she conducts original epidemiologic research, studying infectious diseases in zoo and free-ranging animal populations to determine how disease transmission is impacted by relations between hosts and their environment. She also provides support for interdisciplinary animal health investigations at San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance.

Carmel’s expertise is in analytical epidemiology, with experience in statistical modeling, spatial analysis, and network analysis. Her current projects include investigating transmission pathways for avian mycobacteriosis, using computer simulation to model devil facial tumor disease transmission, identifying determinants of herpes viral disease in cheetahs, and supporting ongoing research efforts to eliminate disease as a barrier to the reintroduction and conservation of the desert tortoise.

Carmel earned her bachelor’s degree in Ecology, Ethology and Evolution from University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She earned her master’s degree from University of Maryland, College Park, where her research focused on the application of epidemiologic methods to study amphibian declines. She earned a Ph.D. in public health with a concentration in epidemiology from the Joint Doctoral Program in Public Health at the University of California, San Diego and San Diego State University. Her doctoral research focused on using social network analysis to study avian disease transmission.