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W10-039: Development of a novel treatment strategy to inhibit the immune evasion mechanism of feline infectious peritonitis virus (FIPV)

Feline coronavirus exists in two forms: a less harmful (avirulent) strain that can cause mild enteritis and a highly pathogenic (virulent) strain that causes a progressive and usually fatal disease known as feline infectious peritonitis (FIP). Cats living in multi-cat environments (e.g., shelter cats or cats in catteries) are at increased risk to develop FIP. An effective therapy is currently not available and affected cats usually succumb to their disease. In the past, the mechanisms describing how the virus can hide from the host’s immune system have been discovered by this research group. These mechanisms can be inhibited by specific compounds, as has been shown in vitro. These inhibitors could be potential candidates for a new therapy for FIP and could help to make the virus visible to the host’s immune system. Virus-infected cells could then be identified and effectively eliminated. The goals of this project are the development of a novel therapeutic approach for FIP, the optimization of detection methods of this therapeutic compound in feline plasma, the determination of its pharmacokinetic characteristics, and, finally, to evaluate its efficacy in FIP-infected feline patients. (Bria Fund Study)

Grant ID: W10-039

Status: Active

Year Funded: 2010

Amount awarded: $12,700

Investigator: Sabine Gleich, DVM; Hannah Dewerchin, DVM; Hans Nauwynck, DVM; Ghent University