Canine parvovirus is a highly contagious viral disease that emerged in 1978, quickly reaching pandemic levels and killing thousands of dogs, especially puppies. Dogs pass their own antibodies against parvovirus to puppies during nursing, and these maternal antibodies can block a pup’s ability to make their own antibodies in response to vaccination. This blocking of vaccination by antibody-based maternal immunity is the main cause of the continuing infections. Researchers will study antibodies from vaccinated and naturally infected dogs and their ability to neutralize different parvovirus variants currently circulating in dog populations. The team also will look at how the virus evolves to escape the body’s immune response. Together, these findings will be used to improve parvovirus vaccine efficacy and identify potential therapeutic antibodies for novel treatments. This work also will establish new techniques that could be used to isolate and produce antibodies against other canine pathogens.
Grant amount awarded
Simon Frueh, DVM