Vector Biology Basic Research

Basic research conducted and supported by NIAID examines the relationship of arthropod vectors with their environment, the pathogens they transmit, and the vertebrate hosts they feed on. By understanding the mechanisms involved in these interactions, researchers can identify potential targets to prevent vectors from blood feeding or from transmitting pathogens.

NIAID conducts and supports a broad range of basic research in vector biology, including projects on the following:

  • Ecology, epidemiology, and behavior of vectors
  • Vector physiology and biochemical processes
  • Population biology, genetics, genomics, and proteomics
  • Transgenic approaches, including genome editing tools such as CRISPR-Cas9
  • Pathogen-vector interactions and factors affecting pathogen development and transmission to vertebrate hosts
  • Vector microbiome and its effect on the vector and pathogens
  • Vector immunity and its effect on pathogens
  • Insecticide resistance and the discovery of targets for development of novel larvicides, insecticides, and repellents
  • Vector blood feeding and the effect of vector saliva on the transmission and pathogenesis of vector-borne microbes
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