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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Gregory Lanzaro named head of vector-borne diseases

Central Valley Business Times - Stockton,CA,USA
Medical entomologist Gregory Lanzaro, director of the University of California Mosquito Research Program, has been named the new director of the UC Davis Center for Vector-borne Diseases.

Mr. Lanzaro has been the point person for both the Mosquito Research Program (UCMRP), a systemwide program of the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Center for Vector-borne Diseases, a unit of the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine and managed in collaboration with the UC Davis College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and the School of Medicine.

"Pathogens transmitted by insects and their relatives rank among the most important infectious diseases globally," says Mr. Lanzaro, in a written comment. "Diseases such as malaria, dengue and leishmaniasis take millions of lives annually and wreak havoc on the economies, and therefore quality of life, for many millions more throughout the world."

The United States, he says, is not immune to the threat of arthropod-borne disease. "Lyme disease, plague and a host of mosquito-transmitted encephalitic viruses are long-standing public health concerns in this country," Mr. Lanzaro says. "The recent introduction of West Nile virus serves to illustrate the capacity of insect-transmitted disease agents to move into parts of the world in which they were never previously present and spread rapidly once introduced”

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