Vector Transmitted Infectious Disease Core

Many of the most widely distributed infectious diseases are transmitted to humans by insects—mosquitoes, ticks, mites, lice, and biting flies, for example. Some of the most important emerging infectious diseases are examples of vector-borne diseases. These include dengue, West Nile virus, the encephalitis viruses such as eastern equine encephalitis, and bacteria such as Francisella tularensis and Yersinia pestis.

Arthropod Containment Levels 3 and 4 are required for research on many of these diseases. Critical research involving vector-borne pathogens includes:

  • Natural infection studies with hemorrhagic fever viruses
  • Vector competence experiments to determine which insects are capable of transmitting the microorganisms
  • Testing of immune and non-immune mediated strategies to eliminate pathogens from vectors (so-called vector interruption strategies)