USDA Awards $5 million for Avian Influenza Research

USDA has renewed the Avian Influenza Coordinated Agricultural Project (AICAP) with another $5 million for three years to the University of Maryland-College Park to study the prevention and control of the disease.
calendar icon 24 July 2008
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The USDA's Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service (CSREES) originally awarded the AICAP in 2005 to the University of Maryland to establish a research and education project to help prevent and control avian influenza (bird flu). The project was composed of a multidisciplinary team of researchers and Extension specialists representing 17 states. AICAP goals include epidemiology, basic research, diagnostics, vaccines and education.

Since 2005, AICAP researchers and educators have:

assembled the first continent-wide network to study the ecological and biological characteristics of avian influenza viruses isolated from wild birds integrated research and education into a unique program available to a range of poultry producers shown that quail can change and expand the host range of avian flu viruses, and found that quail respiratory and intestinal tracts have human-like sialic acid receptors that could partially explain the emergence of avian influenza strains with the capacity to infect humans developed a comprehensive program that has been delivered in 33 states and in Canada and Brazil to train producers and veterinarians on the depopulation and composting of flocks with avian influenza; developed a testing component for rapid diagnosis of avian influenza in birds developed promising vaccines for mass immunization of birds.

The institutions and researchers participating in AICAP are Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University, Auburn University, University of California-Davis, University of Delaware, University of Georgia, USDA-Agricultural Research Service-Southeast Poultry Research Laboratory, Ohio State University, Oregon State University, Texas A&M University, Western University Health Sciences and University of Maryland-College Park.

Further Reading

- You can visit the Avian Flu page by clicking here.
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