Allison Black

PhD student
Google Scholar

I'm a PhD student in the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Washington. My research focuses on using evolutionary analysis of viral genome sequences to explore how diseases move around, whether that be from person-to-person or country-to-country.

Most of my work so far has focused on understanding the Zika epidemic in the Americas. I've been involved in estimating when Zika was introduced to Brazil and investigating how frequently Zika was introduced to the US Virgin Islands. While joint analysis of sequence data and surveillance data is a relatively new domain for infectious disease epidemiologists, these analyses can help us better define populations at risk, investigate factors associated with disease spread, and evaluate infection control measures, all of which are critical components of epidemiology.

I received my Bachelor’s of Arts and Sciences from Quest University in British Columbia, Canada, studying health sciences, and did a post-baccalaureate year at the University of Manitoba studying microbiology. I have a Master's in Genetic Epidemiology from the University of Washington.


Genomic epidemiology supports multiple introductions and cryptic transmission of Zika virus in Colombia

Massive iatrogenic outbreak of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 in rural Cambodia, 2014-2015

Multiplex PCR method for MinION and Illumina sequencing of Zika and other virus genomes directly from clinical samples

Establishment and cryptic transmission of Zika virus in Brazil and the Americas

Genetic characterization of the Zika virus epidemic in the US Virgin Islands

Geography and host species shape the evolutionary dynamics of U genogroup infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus


zika-colombia - Genetic analysis of the Zika epidemic in Colombia

zika-seq - Pipelines to do MinION sequencing of Zika virus

zika-usvi - Evolutionary analysis of USVI Zika epidemic

roka - Evolutionary and epidemiological analysis of Roka HIV outbreak


Genomic epidemiology supports multiple introductions and cryptic transmission of Zika virus in Colombia

Multiple introductions of mumps virus into Washington State

Characterization of 27 mumps virus genomes from the Washington state outbreak

The Bedford lab becomes a sequencing lab...

Evolutionary dynamics of infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus in Pacific salmon

Postcard from Brazil