University of North Dakota Faculty/Staff Newsletter

UND catches large grant to continue avian flu research

David Bradley, an immunologist at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences, recently received a Centers of Research Excellence grant of $700,000 from the North Dakota Department of Commerce to continue research on avian flu antibodies that could help poultry farmers effectively combat outbreaks of the disease.

Bradley's lab is working collaboratively on the project with a local company, Avianax (which develops antibodies for human and animal diseases such as West Nile and the avian flu, respectively), which is providing a 2-to-1 cash match for this research to develop the therapeutic avian flu antibody. Avianax LLC, a joint venture between Intraglobal Biologics and the UND Research Foundation, was created to investigate the properties of goose antibodies and how they can be utilized as a platform for therapeutic and prophylactic treatment of various viral diseases.

Today, avian flu outbreaks almost certainly result in the destruction of affected flocks--even small backyard flocks--within a 5-mile radius. It's a costly, devastating process. But Bradley's research has already proven that the antibodies, developed from goose eggs, could be very effective in combatting this viral flu.

Bradley and Avianax, with the help of this North Dakota grant, hope to develop commercially viable therapeutic treatments within 12 to 18 months.

-- David L. Dodds, media relations/writer and editor, University Relations, 777.5529, david.dodds@UND.edu.


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