The Arthropod Vector: The Controller of Transmission
May 12—17, 2015 Taos, New Mexico
Vector borne diseases impose a disproportionate economic burden on developing countries. However, most research on the prevention of transmission of the pathogens that cause them has focused on the mammalian immune response to the pathogens, ignoring the contribution of the biting arthropod vector. The Scientific Program proposed represents breadth and depth of current hot topics in vector biology. Vector innate immunity studies have been ongoing for about a decade and this field has matured and helped our understanding of the complex interactions between pathogens and vectors. The vector microbiome represents a novel, nascent area of research with great promise for the development of novel prevention and control approaches. Vector saliva has been known to contain powerful biomolecules, but it is only recently that we have begun to understand the translational potential of these molecules. Furthermore, vectors also ingest various bioactive factors of human origin which affect the development and survival of pathogens within the vector.
Purpose of the meeting:
• Integrate the multiple levels of influence on disease transmission by the arthropod vector under a single meeting.
• Access the extensive knowledge of innate immunity gained in Drosophila to inform vector studies, incorporate the dynamic and cutting edge research on the role of the microbiome, and explore how the biologically and immunologically active components of saliva influence transmission.
• Bring together researchers from multiple scientific areas relevant to vector-borne pathogen transmission and promote the discussion and exploration of multidisciplinary approaches and collaborations to address the challenge of arthropod-transmitted diseases.
• Translate immunological and microbiological insights into new approaches for combating vector-borne diseases, including manipulation of the microbiome and identification of novel, non-traditional vaccine targets (e.g., arthropod saliva proteins).