Alexander T. Ciota
- Director - Arbovirus Laboratory, Wadsworth Center, New York State Dept. of Health
- Faculty - UAlbany RNA Institute
- Adjunct Professor - UAlbany Biology Dept.
- Northeast Regional Center of Excellence in Vector-Borne Diseases
Dr. Ciota is Director of the Arbovirus Laboratory, which performs clinical testing, surveillance, and research of arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses). The lab studies both mosquito and tick-borne agents including the flaviviruses West Nile virus (WNV), dengue virus, Zika virus and Powassan virus, as well as alphaviruses including eastern equine encephalitis virus and Mayaro virus, among others. The unique facilities which comprise the Arbovirus lab allow for extensive experimentation in a range of natural invertebrate and vertebrate hosts. Dr. Ciota’s primary research areas include arbovirus evolution, mosquito-virus interactions, and the role of temperature in arbovirus transmission.
Specific studies include defining arbovirus evolutionary pressures both within and among hosts and vectors, defining how specific interactions between viral genetics and vector populations influence transmissibility in distinct environments, modeling the impact of climate change on transmission and evolution, defining the genetic signatures and mechanisms of host-specific adaptations, and identifying how unique microbial signatures influence vectorial capacity. The overarching goal of these studies is to gain a better understanding of the factors that shape patterns of arbovirus transmission and ultimately to influence novel public health interventions.
- Infection and immunity
- Genes and genomes