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Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics

CIDD embraces all scales and components of infectious disease biology. Our interdisciplinary approach, coupled with a dynamic viewpoint, provides insight into how to prevent or reduce infections.

Center Overview

CIDD encompasses expertise in such basic fields as ecology, evolution, mathematical biology and molecular biology as well as applied disciplines including epidemiology, drug development, and vector control. We have partnerships across the globe with academic institutions, health agencies, and industry leaders to help bring its science into translational practice. Trainees in CIDD benefit from developing scientifically in this rich collaborative research environment, informed and shaped by real world practice.

70+ Research Groups engaged globally in 40+ Countries representing 15 Academic Departments across 5 Colleges at Penn State

News

Global warming may limit spread of dengue fever, new research finds

Infection with dengue virus makes mosquitoes more sensitive to warmer temperatures, according to new research led by Penn State researchers. The team also found that infection with the bacterium Wolbachia, which has recently been used to control viral infections in mosquitoes, also increases the thermal sensitivity of the insects.

Australian megafires burn critical habitat of 'Vulnerable' virus-harboring bats

The severe megafires that occurred in eastern Australia during 2019-20 were much larger and more concentrated across the landscape than in previous years, according to a study by researchers at Penn State and the University of New South Wales. The unprecedented fires included the burning of 34% of the foraging habitat of grey-headed flying foxes, which are known to transmit deadly Lyssa and Hendra viruses.

Neglecting delays in outbreak response grossly underestimates epidemic severity

For livestock diseases, like foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) and swine flu, rapid culling and carcass disposal are well-established strategies for halting an outbreak and limiting its impact. However, even when infection is quickly detected delays in these interventions may permit pathogen transmission from infected farms.

Fighting COVID with COVID

What if the COVID-19 virus could be used against itself? Researchers at Penn State have designed a proof-of-concept therapeutic that may be able to do just that. The team designed a synthetic defective SARS-CoV-2 virus that is innocuous but interferes with the real virus’ growth, potentially causing the extinction of both the disease-causing virus and the synthetic virus.