The VBD group includes researchers with diverse backgrounds working on vectors and vector-borne diseases such as malaria, leishmaniasis, arboviral infections and tick-transmitted diseases. The overarching aim of our group is the development of innovative methods for surveillance and control of vector-borne diseases.
Our major research objectives include:
i) Molecular, genetic and eco-epidemiological studies, in order to assess dispersal of pathogens and vectors, markers of virulence and host susceptibility.
ii) Studies on mechanisms of drug and insecticide resistance in natural populations, discovery and testing of new drug candidates using in vivo/in vitromodels and in silicodrug repositioning.
iii) Studies on vector/host-pathogen interactions, aimed at elucidating patterns and cellular/molecular determinants of transmission, vector competence and new transmission-blocking targets.
iv) Research on vector bioecology and control, aimed at characterizing the vectorial capacity of natural populations, testing new insecticide/repellent candidates and alternative non-insecticidal tools for vector control.
v) Develop new methods for epidemiological assessment and surveillance, including community-based vector monitoring, predictive risk mapping and novel diagnostic tools.