Dec 082002
Authors: Helyna Bledsoe

CSU Awarded Grant to Study Vector-Borne Diseases

By Helyna Bledsoe

CSU and the University of Texas will be splitting nearly $18 million thanks to a grant they received to study diseases, said Carol Blair, co-program director of the grant.

The grant, which was awarded at the end of September by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health, will train graduate students in medical entomology, vector-borne diseases, microbiology and arbovirology to help the US public health system treat vector-borne illnesses.

At CSU, one of the projects the grant money will be used for hopes to discover more about the West Nile Virus.

“We’re interested in how it came to the U.S.,” Blair said. “Each summer it spreads to other states and it seems to produce more disease in horses and humans than it did when it first came to the U.S.”

The project will also see how widespread the virus can be in other animals by collaborating with CSU veterinarians, Blair said.

There are over 30 researchers at the Anthropod-born Infectious Disease Laboratory at CSU and grant money will allow them to focus on numerous ailments such as yellow fever, hantaviruses, and Lyme disease.

“We’re very grateful to the CDC for this award. Being selected for one of these grants says quite a lot about the quality of our research, or facilities and our scientists,” said Barry Beaty, former head of the Anthropod-born Infectious Disease Laboratory at CSU in an October press release.

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