Smith, A. W., P. L. Iversen, et al. (2008). “Virus-specific antiviral treatment for controlling severe and fatal outbreaks of feline calicivirus infection.” Am J Vet Res 69(1): 23-32.
During the past decade, several outbreaks of severe systemic disease associated with feline calicivirus (FCV) have occurred with high mortality in the affected animals. This study details evaluation of a virus-specific antiviral phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomer (PMO) for treating 112 kittens involved in 3 natural outbreaks of disease in the United States. PMOs are molecules used to modify gene expression. This novel treatment modality has not previously been tested in cats. A calicivirus strain was isolated from a cat that died of natural hemorrhagic calicivirus disease and a PMO was synthesized. The PMO was administered on day 1 of clinical signs and continued for up to 7 days. Various antiviral doses were evaluated by comparing survival times, clinical recovery, and virus shedding. In the natural outbreaks, 47 of 59 treated cats survived, but only 3 of 31 untreated cats survived. PMO treatment reduced calicivirus shedding and improved clinical recovery. Virus-specific PMOs may be an effective modality for treatment of severe disease associated with feline calicivirus.
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