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New Mexico State University

Defeating Deadly Viruses

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Kathryn Hanley works side by side with student researchers to investigate the molecular biology, evolution and ecology of emerging RNA viruses like dengue and influenza. Their goal is to design better methods to control the spread of these dangerous diseases.

The Hanley Lab pursues several avenues of research, including:

  • How mosquito-borne dengue virus emerges from non-human primates to infect humans
  • The impact of mosquito immune defenses on dengue virus evolution
  • Mechanisms by which arthropod-borne viruses counteract both arthropod vector and vertebrate host immunity
  • Novel synergies for antiviral drug design

Hanley's interdisciplinary approach involves collaborations with colleagues across NMSU's colleges and around the world. Just one example is her partnership with researchers from the University of Texas Medical Branch, Johns Hopkins University and Institut Pasteur in Senegal to study mosquito-borne viruses. Their investigation seeks to identify ecological factors, such as local habitat and mosquito behavior, which increase the risk of human infection with mosquito-transmitted viruses.


  • Distinguished Career Award from the NMSU University Research Council for Exceptional Achievements in Creative Scholarly Activity
  • Plaque of Appreciation for Teaching Excellence at NMSU
  • NIH Exploratory/Developmental research grant (co-PI)
  • Tulane National Primate Research Center Pilot Study award
  • NMSU Interdisciplinary Research Grant (co-PI)
  • NIH Research Scholar Award (PI)
  • Hanley, K.A. and S.C. Weaver, editors. 2009. Frontiers in Dengue Virus Research. Caister Academic Press. Hethersett, UK.

Related Links

Collaborative research focuses on mosquito-transmitted viruses

Hanley protégé wins prestigious award


Kathryn Hanley is an associate professor of biology at New Mexico State University’s College of Arts & Sciences. She received her undergraduate degree in biology from Amherst College and her doctorate in biology from the University of California, San Diego.



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