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W13-042: Investigating feline morbillivirus molecular epidemiology in cats in the North Eastern United States and potential associations with chronic kidney disease)

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) has been described by distinguished researchers as feline enemy number one, since it is very common and associated with high morbidity and mortality. Frustratingly, despite considerable research in the field, we still do not know what causes CKD in cats. Recently, a newly discovered virus, called feline morbillivirus (FMV) was associated with CKD in cats in Hong Kong and China. FMV is related to other viruses that cause serious disease in other species such as distemper virus in dogs, and measles virus in people. Given the potentially huge implications of this virus for cats, this group proposes to further investigate this virus in cats in the United States. The objectives of the proposed study are to attempt to identify FMV in cats in New England and evaluate for a potential association between FMV infection and CKD in cats. Additionally, isolation of the virus will be vital in order to perform future studies evaluating the disease causing potential of this virus.

Grant ID: W13-042

Status: Active

Year Funded: 2013

Amount awarded: $24,734

Investigator: Claire Sharp and Martin Ludlow; Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine