FORT COLLINS — Colorado State University has received a pledge of $8.75 million from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to form the Rockies and High Plains VEctor-borne diseases Center (RaHP VEC), which will study ways to combat the threat of ailments such as West Nile virus and Lyme disease.
“The new center will focus on forging relationships among public health agencies, vector control organizations and higher ed institutions in the region; educating and training; trapping and testing mosquitoes and other vectors at ‘hot spots’ in the region, especially in small agricultural towns and other underserved communities; and evaluating the efficacy of vector control methods,” CSU said in a news release.
CSU microbiology professor Brian Foy is the center’s co-principal investigator.
“We’re using this agreement to build a community of partners, all working in vector-borne disease,” Foy said. “It includes academic institutions that study these diseases and train students, regional public health departments that work to enhance the health of their communities, and mosquito and vector-control operators that suppress vector populations and their ability to spread disease. And we’re going to be partnering with community colleges and local universities to build up students’ ability to join the workforce for vector-borne diseases in our region.”