National Science Foundation awards $1.7 million in rapid response grants to study Zika virus

To find new ways of halting the spread of Zika -- fast becoming a major public health threat -- the National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Environmental Biology's Ecology and Evolution of Infectious Diseases (EEID) Program has funded nine rapid response, or RAPID, grants totaling $1.7 million.

NSF's EEID Program funds the development and testing of predictive models, and discovery of the principles governing the transmission dynamics of infectious diseases such as Zika.

NSF Zika rapid response projects include:

  • Environmental drivers of Zika transmission and control.
  • Zika vector-climate dynamics in a high-burden region in Ecuador.
  • Overcoming uncertainty to enable estimation and forecasting of Zika virus transmission.
  • Data-driven mathematical modeling of the shared epidemiology of Zika and similar viruses across the globe.
  • And potential enhancement of Zika virus transmission by microfilarial nematodes (blood pathogens).

One of the NSF Zika RAPID grants was awarded to Dr. Gonzalo Vazquez-Prokopec, a faculty member in the PBEE program. The abstract can be found at the following link: Gonzalo Vazquez Prokopec, Emory University, RAPID: Harnessing Spatial Heterogeneity to Contain Zika Virus Transmission.

Click here to view the full press release in National Science Foundation News.