Directory Page Title

Eugene M. Burreson

Emeritus Faculty

Retired: 2010
Department: Aquatic Health Sciences
Email: [[gene]]
Phone: (804) 684-7015
Interests: Shellfish disease; marine leeches.

  • B.S., Eastern Oregon State College
  • M.S., Ph.D., Oregon State University
Research Interests

My broad interests are the biology and ecology of protozoan parasites of marine fish and shellfish and their effect on host recruitment and population dynamics. Current emphasis is on oyster and clam pathogens. Presently, my research focuses on environmental control of the distribution and abundance of  shellfish pathogens, the life cycles and transmission dynamics of shellfish pathogens and on ways to mitigate the effects of these pathogens on the shellfish industries of Chesapeake Bay. I am also interested in the taxonomy and systematics of marine leeches.

Current Projects
  • Systematics of the marine leeches of the world (NSF PEET funded)
  • Field and laboratory investigations on the biology and salinity tolerance of a recently discovered species of the oyster pathogen Bonamia in the non-native oyster Crassostrea ariakensis (NOAA Chesapeake Bay Office funded)
  • Oyster size specific intensity of Perkinsus marinus; the case for increased tolerance in large oysters (NOAA Sea Grant Funded)

Selected Publications
  • Burreson, E. M. and K. S. Reece. 2006. Spore ornamentation of Haplosporidium nelsoni and Haplosporidium costale (Haplosporidia) and incongruence of molecular phylogeny and spore morphology in the Haplosporidia. Journal of Parasitology 92: 1295-1301.
  • Burreson, E. M. and J. E. Kalman. 2006. A new species of Malmiana (Oligochaeta: Hirudinida: Piscicolidae) from tidepool fishes in Northern California. Journal of Parasitology 92: 89-92.
  • Audemard, C., L. M. Ragone Calvo, K. T. Paynter, K. S. Reece and E. M. Burreson. 2006 Real-time PCR investigation of parasite ecology: in situ determination of oyster parasite Perkinsus marinus transmission dynamics in lower Chesapeake Bay. Parasitology 132(6): 827-842.
  • Carnegie, R. B., E. M. Burreson, P. M. Hine, N. A. Stokes, C. Audemard, M. J. Bishop and C. H. Peterson. 2006. Bonamia perspora n. sp. (Haplosporidia), a parasite of the oyster Ostreola equestris, is the first Bonamia species known to produce spores. Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology 53: 232-245.
  • Williams, J. I., and E. M. Burreson. 2006. Phylogeny of the fish leeches (Oligochaeta, Hirudinida, Piscicolidae) based on nuclear and mitochondrial genes and morphology. Zoologica Scripta 35: 627-639.
Current Students
Courses Taught / Teaching
  • MS566 Diseases of Marine Organisms
  • MS698 Systematics and Phylogenetics
Faculty Awards
  • Outstanding teacher award, April, 1989, School of Marine Science, College of William and Mary.
  • Alumni Fellow for outstanding teaching, 1993, College of William and Mary.
  • 2001 Best Paper Award for papers published in the Journal of Aquatic Animal Health during 2000.
  • Office International de Epizooties (OIE) designated Reference Expert for molluscan diseases Perkinsosis and Haplosporidiosis, 2001. 
  • Honored Life Membership of the National Shellfisheries Association, 2009.
Professional Memberships
  • American Society of Parasitology
  • International Society of Protozoologists
  • National Shellfisheries Association
  • Willi Hennig Society