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Cross section of a multicolored, round Zika virus with DNA strands coiled together in the center.

Creating a Vaccine for the Tick-borne Powassan Virus

May 05, 2021 at 12:00 PM ET


Tick-borne diseases (TBD) among humans are on the rise in the United States as urbanization along previously unpopulated areas continues. The causative infectious agents of TBDs include bacteria, viruses, and protozoa. As part of our pledge to support global health, ATCC has acquired and authenticated numerous reference materials that are ideal for use in the development and evaluation of innovative therapeutics and rapid diagnostic tools. In this webinar, we will provide an overview of TBD epidemiology, the current status of diagnostic methods, and resources available from ATCC that advance TBD research priorities. A special focus will be placed on recent projects aimed at improving the diagnosis of babesiosis via Droplet Digital PCR and mass spectrometry technologies.

Key Points

  • The most common TBDs in the United States are Lyme disease, caused by the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi, and babesiosis, caused by the protozoan parasite Babesia microti.
  • The accurate diagnosis of TBD can be complicated by the possibility of co-infection, which exacerbates disease symptomatology; therefore, more accurate detection methods are required.
  • ATCC scientists are working toward improving the diagnosis of babesiosis via cutting-edge technologies.

Watch The Presentation


Velasco Cimica, headshot.

Velasco Cimica, PhD

Scientist, ATCC

Dr. Cimica is a Scientist at ATCC with over 10 years of experience working in virology. Dr. Cimica is an expert in vaccine development using virus-like particles (VLPs) for respiratory syncytial virus, dengue virus, and Zika virus, and he is currently developing VLP-based vaccine candidates for emerging viruses. He applies structural vaccinology and rational design approaches for the creation of novel and optimized vaccine candidates. In addition, Dr. Cimica has demonstrated experience in adjuvant formulation and optimization specifically for VLP-based vaccines.