Restricted Research - Award List, Note/Discussion Page

Fiscal Year: 2014

2  The University of Texas at El Paso  (23666)

Principal Investigator: DOUGLAS WATTS

Total Amount of Contract, Award, or Gift (Annual before 2011): $ 5,838,549

Exceeds $250,000 (Is it flagged?): Yes

Start and End Dates: 9/27/13 <> 9/26/18

Restricted Research: YES

Academic Discipline: Biological Sciences

Department, Center, School, or Institute: College of Science

Title of Contract, Award, or Gift: Global Hunger and Food Security Research Strategy: Climate Resilience, Nutrition, and Policy – Feed the Future - Innovation Lab for Rift Valley Fever Control in Agriculture

Name of Granting or Contracting Agency/Entity: none

Program Title: none
CFDA Linked: USAID Foreign Assistance for Programs Overseas


RVFV has the potential to amplify and be transmitted by several mosquito species, and via the aerosol route from infected domestic livestock in Africa as well as by experimentally infected mosquitoes found in the United States, and is considered by the National Institutes of Infectious Diseases and Allergy (NIAID) as a Category A, high priority biodefense and emerging infectious disease agent. Most RVFV epidemics have occurred in rural areas where livestock populations are high and this has led to the belief that human disease from mosquito-borne viruses can be largely controlled by vaccinating livestock (23). A fortuitous combination of climate, human density, and high populations of an efficient anthropophilic vector could lead to an epidemic with humans serving as amplifiers, as occurs during outbreaks of yellow fever and dengue. RVF virus has in one sense already shifted hosts – from its unknown amplifiers in sub-Saharan Africa into sheep and cattle. In addition, UTEP does not know what the longterm enzootic consequences of an introduction of RVFV into North America would be. The possibility that RVFV could be introduced into North America is supported by experimental studies that showed that several species of mosquitoes were competent vector of the virus (34). Also, the possibility of adapting to new host was supported by recent findings in South Africa that one of their native rodents develops viremia sufficiently high to serve as an amplifying host for RVFV (24).

Discussion: No discussion notes


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