FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2016

Harrisvaccines awarded swine disease contract from USDA subsidiary

Harrisvaccines, a vaccine production company, announced on Tuesday that it was awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Institute of Food and Agriculture for swine disease research.

The grant, supported by the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Grant no. 2013-67015-21307, will provide Harrisvaccines with the resources to research the Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus.

The grant, which began on Monday and will be valid for two years, is titled the "Proteomics-defined Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus Immunoproteome."

Dr. Mark Mogler, the head of research at Harrisvaccines, will serve as project director. He will be assisted by Dr. Kurt Kamrud and Dr. Manohar John of PathoVacs.

"Dr. John has a novel technology that allows him to screen thousands of antigens at a time," Mogler said. "This will be very beneficial, because rather than looking at only one antigen at a time, we will be able to look at tens of thousands simultaneously."

The team is hoping to characterize the immune response of the body to the PRRSV proteins in the hopes of developing an effective vaccine against the virus.

"Ideally we would find a sequence, or a set of sequences, that are found across all PRRSV strains. We could then use these to make a more effective PRRSV vaccine," Mogler said.