Oct. 05--Harrisvaccines has been awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to research a virus affecting the nation's swine herds.
The grant from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture was awarded to Harrisvaccines for research of the Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus. The research will be done in collaraboration with PathoVacs Inc., an early stage biotechnology company also located in Ames. Both companies are based in the Iowa State University Research Park.
Harrisvaccines was awarded the $398,000 grant for two years. The research will utilize existing research staff, spokesman Joel Harris said.
A news release by the company announcing the grant said the research project began Oct. 1. Dr. Mark Mogler, head of research for Harrisvaccines will serve as project manager.
PRRS is a reproductive and respiratory virus that occurs worldwide in most major swine-raising countries, according to the Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine website. It causes reproductive impairment or failure and respiratory syndrome in all age groups.
The website calls it the "most most economically significant disease to affect US swine production since the eradication of classical swine fever."
Harrisvaccines, founded in 2006, employs about 30 people. The company specializes in products for the swine, cattle, equine and farmed shrimp industries. PathoVacs works to develop vaccines against infectious agents that causes disease in humans, livestock and poultry.
(c)2013 the Ames Tribune, Iowa
Visit the Ames Tribune, Iowa at www.amestrib.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services