Ebel lab group picture over Zoom during COVID-19 shutdown.

Greg Ebel is a Professor at CSU, and the Director of the CSU Arthropod-Borne and Infectious Diseases Laboratory (AIDL).

Infections transmitted by arthropods such as mosquitoes and ticks represent some of the most difficult and persistent problems facing public health and medicine. We are mainly interested in arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses), such as West Nile, Dengue and Zika viruses.  We exist in order to help find ways to make these types of infections less burdensome. Our research addresses several areas, including arbovirus population biology and evolution, mechanisms that permit mosquitoes to transmit arboviruses, mosquito immunity and disease surveillance. Our currently funded projects focus on West Nile, Dengue, Zika and chikungunya viruses, as well as the mosquitoes that transmit them. We are also involved in developing novel methods for detecting emerging viruses in resource-poor settings such as rural West Africa.

We take a multidisciplinary approach to science that combines classical virology, entomology, and molecular and computational biology. Central concepts that guide our work include the notion that arthropod-borne viruses, like other RNA viruses, form genetically complex populations within individual hosts, and that natural selection powerfully shapes which of these variants are most fit in a given environment. We are also active in local health initiatives that consist mainly of efforts to limit the impact of West Nile virus in Fort Collins and elsewhere on the great plains.

Statement on Inclusion and Anti-Racism from Dr. Ebel

Humanity is facing a staggering array of large, complicated problems. In this lab we work on a small subset of these that address the complex issue of emerging diseases. I am very proud of our work and the people who do it.

Another big problem that we face in the US is that of racism, including within the worlds of science and academia that we inhabit. We therefore strive to be an anti-racist lab.

We will welcome people into our group because they are passionate, bright, hardworking and talented. Nobody will be excluded due to their race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sex, sexual orientation, nationality, etc., because we recognize that lots of different people can be passionate about science, willing to work hard, and tolerant of the daily grind that we endure as scientists.

As a group, we will promote diversity in science and stand up for justice and equality as we seek to overturn the legacy of white supremacy that we live within and that has benefited many of us. We are not perfect and will make mistakes as we learn and grow.

Words are easy. Here are a few of the actions that we will take together to be more anti-racist.

  • We will incorporate discussions of racism, diversity and inclusion into our lab meetings at least four times a year to normalize discussions of this difficult topic.
  • We will lead in our department by incorporating discussions of racism, diversity and inclusion in our weekly departmental meetings to normalize discussions and encourage open dialogue.
  • We will participate in the Multicultural Undergraduate Research Art and Leadership Symposium (MURALS) at CSU and support student and fellow attendance at the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) conference.
  • We will ensure that a land acknowledgement is included in CSU’s new CVID building, and that this building has space dedicated to an anti-racism library.
  • We will amplify voices of under-represented groups in our scientific community by sharing their work and including them on panels through our roles on program and planning committees for societies, conferences and journals.