Ricardo Castillo-Neyra, PhD, DVM, MSPH


  •  Assistant Professor | University of Pennsylvania
  •  Guatemala | Peru
  •   Epidemiology | OneHealth | Public Health | Tropical diseases

Languages: Spanish (native), English (fluent), Portuguese (basic)

Bio statement

I am an assistant professor in the Department of Biostatistics, Epidemiology, & Informatics in Perelman School of Medicine, and the scientific director of the Zoonotic Disease Research Lab (Penn and Peruvian University Cayetano Heredia). I study the eco-epidemiology of tropical diseases and use canine rabies as a system model to understand how the social and spatial features of cities influence the emergence and persistence of infectious diseases.

Dog rabies threatens human health in the Americas and is expanding. Why can’t we get rid of the oldest known zoonotic disease? I conduct community-based studies in Peru to answer this question.

Recent global health projects

Mathematically optimized vaccination campaigns to control zoonotic outbreaks.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the epidemiology of canine rabies in Latin America.

Selected publications

Raynor B, Díaz EW, Shinnick J, Zegarra E, Monroy Y, et al. (2021) The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on rabies reemergence in Latin America: The case of Arequipa, Peru. PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases 15(5): e0009414. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0009414

Ascuña-Durand K, Salazar-Sánchez RS, Castillo-Neyra R, Ballón-Echegaray J. Relative Frequency of Blastocystis Subtypes 1, 2, and 3 in Urban and Periurban Human Populations of Arequipa, Peru. Tropical Medicine and Infectious Disease. 2020; 5(4):178. https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed5040178

Salazar-Sánchez RS, Ascuña-Durand K, Ballón-Echegaray J, Vásquez-Huerta V, Martínez-Barrios E, Castillo-Neyra R. Socio-Demographic Determinants Associated with Blastocystis Infection in Arequipa, Peru [published online ahead of print, 2020 Nov 16]. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2020;104(2):700-707. doi:10.4269/ajtmh.20-0631

Castillo-Neyra R, Buttenheim AM, Brown J, Ferrara JF, Arevalo-Nieto C, et al. (2020) Behavioral and structural barriers to accessing human post-exposure prophylaxis and other preventive practices in Arequipa, Peru, during a canine rabies epidemic. PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases 14(7): e0008478. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0008478