Can the zombie apocalypse happen in the Arctic? And other tales of Arctic infectious diseases

Besides Atka villagers, many others are buried in the Killisnoo cemetery. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

This week on the program we are taking a, somewhat humorous, but scientifically accurate look, at whether a zombie apocalypse, or other devastating plague could affect the arctic.  

We’re featuring Michael Bruce who is a public health physician and medical epidemiologist trained in Internal and Preventive Medicine. He is the Epidemiology Team Leader at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Arctic Investigations Program in Anchorage, Alaska, USA.

The slideshow he refers to a few times can be seen by clicking [here]

The audio presented here–> LISTEN is a longer version than what played over the airwaves. It features Dr. Bruce talking about how he ended up in his career and additional questions from the audience.



  • Michael Bruce is a public health physician and medical epidemiologist trained in Internal and Preventive Medicine. He is the Epidemiology Team Leader at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Arctic Investigations Program in Anchorage, Alaska, USA.For the past 18 years, his work has focused on improving the health of Alaskans and peoples of the Arctic. He has worked to create, manage and analyze data from the international circumpolar surveillance (ICS) system for invasive bacterial diseases that includes Alaska, Northern Canada, Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Norway, Sweden and Finland. He has received numerous awards and has published over 100 scientific articles and book chapters.



  • Lise Falskow- President and CEO of the Alaska World Affairs Council and she serves as the Norwegian Honorary Consul for Alaska where she is responsible for assisting Norwegian Citizens in Alaska, public diplomacy, and business promotion.






RECORDED: Friday, April 13th, 2018 at 49th State Brewing Company.

BROADCAST: Tuesday, April 24th, 2018. 2:00 pm – 3:00 p.m. AKT


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Eric Bork, or you can just call him “Bork” because everybody else does, is the FM Operations Manager for KSKA-FM. He oversees the day-to-day operations of the FM broadcast. He produces and edits episodes of Outdoor Explorer, the Alaska-focused outdoors program. He also maintains the web posts for that show. You may have heard him filling in for Morning Edition or hosting All Things Considered and can still find him operating the soundboard for any of the live broadcast programs.

After escaping the Detroit area when he was 18, Bork made it up to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, where he earned a degree in Communications/Radio Broadcasting from Northern Michigan University. He spent time managing the college radio station, working for the local NPR affiliate, and then in top 40 radio in Michigan before coming to Alaska to work his first few summers. After then moving to Chicago, it only took five years to convince him to move back to Alaska in 2010. When not involved in great radio programming he’s probably riding a bicycle, thinking about riding bicycles, dreaming about bikes, reading a book, or planning the next place he’ll travel to. Only two continents left to conquer!

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