Tag Archives: fralin

Understanding diseases in order to stamp them out

Pablo Sobrado is working on vaccines that could benefit people in the poorest parts of the world.

Pablo Sobrado is working on vaccines that could benefit people in the poorest parts of the world.

Millions of people worldwide suffer from tuberculosis, Chagas disease, and fungal infections, yet current treatment is expensive and minimally effective.

To combat these diseases, researcher Pablo Sobrado is developing drugs that may be able to help stop the illnesses in some of the poorest parts of the world.

“Our work is focused on understanding these diseases so that we can develop treatments that are not only effective, but affordable,” Sobrado said.

In addition to operating an infectious disease research program, Sobrado also serves on the steering committee of Virginia Tech’s Center for Drug Discovery and as the director of the center’s screening lab, located in the Fralin Life Science Institute. Formed in 2012, the center’s mission is to accelerate research that could lead to new treatments for cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, tuberculosis, fungal infections, cardiovascular disease, atherosclerosis, diseases of the central nervous system, and parasitic diseases such as malaria and Chagas disease.

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Using genetics to wipe out disease

talenrelease_largeVirginia Tech researchers successfully used a gene disruption technique to change the eye color of a mosquito — a critical step toward new genetic strategies aimed at disrupting the transmission of diseases such as dengue fever, which kills as many as 25,000 people annually.

Zach Adelman and Kevin Myles, both associate professors of entomology in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and affiliated researchers with the Fralin Life Science Institute, study the transmission of vector-borne diseases and develop novel methods of control, based on genetics. Continue reading

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