Main research topics
The laboratory for vector capacity investigates under experimental laboratory conditions the vector competence of arthropods (mosquitoes, biting midges, ticks and others) for viral, bacterial and parasitical pathogens as well as the extrinsic incubation period under different temperature regimes. These investigations are carried out in BSL2 and BSL3 insectaries and contribute to risk assessment for the occurrence and distribution of indigenous and exotic vector-borne diseases.
Another focus of the laboratory is to decipher the molecular determinants for the development of a pathogen in a vector. For this, the modulation of the gene expression in natural barriers of the vector such as the midgut or the salivary glands in reaction to a certain pathogen as well as the adaptation of the gene expression of the pathogen to the vector is investigated with next generation sequencing technologies in order to obtain a fundamental understanding for the complex vector-pathogen-interactions.