Pacific-Southwest Regional Center of Excellence for Biodefense and Emerging Diseases ("the Center") is a research consortium comprising 34 projects clustered within seven programs. The Center also features five differentiated core facilities that serve the entire region. All four states (AZ, CA, HI, and NV) of Region IX are represented among the 27 educational, research, commercial, and governmental institutions of the Center. The overall goal of the Center is outstanding science, achieved with a multidisciplinary and collaborative approach and a portfolio that balances basic and translational research. The Center's major theme is infections of the western United States, the Pacific Rim, and Latin America of relevance for biodefense or as emerging diseases. The seven programs are: (1) dengue, (2) viral zoonoses, including arenaviruses and Nipah virus, (3) botulinum neurotoxin, (4) Category B Burkholderia species, (5) tularemia, (6) coccidioidomycosis, and (7) reservoir-targeted vaccines for prevention of human infections. Applications of the research include improved diagnostics, novel therapeutic agents, and vaccine platforms. Other key functions of the Center are: (a) responding, in cooperation with public health agencies, to infectious diseases emergencies with its collective expertise, resources, and facilities;(b) fostering the careers of talented young investigators and more established investigators newly-entering this research field;and (c) providing a region-wide training facility for investigators and staff to learn safe operations under biocontainment conditions.
Through its basic and translational research programs, the Pacific-Southwest Regional Center of Excellence provides advances for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of infectious diseases of biodefense and emerging public health importance.
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