SBIR Phase I: Atlantic Cod Nodavirus Vaccine
This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project will develop a novel recombinant vaccine for the control of viral nervous necrosis (VNN) of cultured Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) in New England and Atlantic Canada. The Atlantic cod nodavirus causes VNN which is characterized by the appearance of lesions in the brain and retina, abnormal swimming behavior, and dark coloring. The acute form of the disease occurs during the larval and juvenile stages of cod development and 90% or greater of the infected fish may die. The project addresses vaccine preparation, formulation, potency, safety and efficacy. The approach incorporates knowledge of the three-dimensional structure of the virion and sequence-based domain organization of the virus shell as it relates to host-specificity, pathogenicity, and immunogenicity to optimize the vaccine. The research plan is designed to meet end-user preferences that include efficacy for both broodstock and juvenile animals that does not compromise fish growth, results in a long-lasting protective immunity and provides 80% or greater relative percent survival. Commercially, the application of a viral nervous necrosis (VNN) vaccine will help address infectious disease, which is a major constraint to future growth and sustainability of the aquaculture industry. World fish consumption is expected to rise 35% over current levels by the year 2015 yet an estimated 76% of the oceans wild fish stocks are fully-exploited, overexploited or depleted. The increase in seafood demand will be met largely through growth of global aquaculture production. The emerging Atlantic cod industry in North America is seriously threatened by VNN caused by a piscine nodavirus. The nodavirus vaccine developed will ensure fish health while reducing the potential for virus bioamplification and transmission between farmed cod and wild fish. The nodavirus vaccine will provide a tool that consumers, scientists, farmers and environmental groups can use to work together toward achieving a common goal of ocean stewardship while meeting market demand for a high-quality, healthy source of seafood. The project will (1) enable the long-term development of a statewide R&D and product deployment infrastructure, (2) enhance the competitive position of Maines technology intensive industries and (3) support the clusters of industrial activity and the creation of job for the people of Maine.
Small Business Information at Submission:
P O Box 408 259 Main Street Winterport, ME 04496
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