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Research Project: Animal and Arthropod Studies in BSL3 Containment at Pat Roberts Hall for Comparative Zoonotic Arbovirus Studies

Location: Foreign Arthropod Borne Animal Disease Research

Project Number: 3022-32000-025-015-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2022
End Date: Aug 31, 2026

The purpose of this agreement is to facilitate research to enhance the understanding of arbovirus transmission, pathogenesis, and virulence for the Foreign Arthropod-Borne Animal Disease Research Unit (FABADRU) with the cooperator while the National Bio and Agro-defense Facility (NBAF) transitions to full scientific operations. The overall goals, shared with the cooperator, of this research project will be two-fold: 1) completion of arbovirus animal studies through infection of livestock and wildlife to understand vector transmission mechanism, and 2) completion of arbovirus arthropod studies to understand vector transmission. These will characterize the susceptibility, pathogenesis, immunogenicity, and virus-vector-host interactions of arboviruses in mammalian and invertebrate hosts and cell cultures.

Arboviruses are pathogens transmitted by mosquitos affecting livestock that requires animal and entomology studies in a high containment facility. Virus collections will be maintained through cell culture along with preparations of viral RNA within the cooperator's BSL3 space. The role of arthropod vectors in establishment of infection, replication, and persistence will be evaluated within the cooperator’s ACL3 space. Animal studies will also be conducted to understand pathogenesis, immune response to infection, and arthropod transmission. Individual study designs and study timelines will be established by the lead scientists with the cooperator's staff.