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Probiotics for Maintaining Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) Health and the…

Award Information

Department of Defense
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2013 / STTR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Agave BioSystems, Inc.
401 E. State Street Suite 200 Ithaca, AK 14850-
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2013
Title: Probiotics for Maintaining Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) Health and the Readiness of the U.S. Navy"s Marine Mammal Systems
Agency / Branch: DOD / NAVY
Contract: N00014-13-P-1172
Award Amount: $79,999.00


Agave BioSystems, with their academic partners at the Mote Marine Laboratory, proposes to develop probiotic pharmaceuticals from indigenous commensal microbes to enhance gastrointestinal health in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). The dolphin gastrointestinal microbiome will be characterized by 16S rRNA deep sequencing, and culturable commensals will be isolated by plating dolphin gastric and fecal samples on a range of media. Cultured microbes will be tested for their ability to inhibit pathogen growth using a panel of known dolphin infectious agents, while qPCR assays will be developed to confirm the presence of the selected probiotic candidates in a sample dolphin population. A process for encapsulation of probiotic candidates will be developed to extend shelf life and confer resistance to degradation in gastric and bile environments. A Phase II plan will be developed to demonstrate the safety of the probiotic and evaluate its efficacy in the treatment of gastrointestinal disease in dolphins. Candidate probiotics will be characterized for colonization and adhesion and for their ability to modulate the host inflammatory response. Agave BioSystems will work with the US Navy Marine Mammal Program in the Phase II to demonstrate the performance of the probiotic at colonizing the dolphin intestine and promoting gastrointestinal health.

Principal Investigator:

John Ramsey
Staff Scientist
(607) 272-0002

Business Contact:

Matt Salazar
(607) 272-0002
Small Business Information at Submission:

Agave BioSystems, Inc.
P.O. Box 100 Ithaca, NY -

EIN/Tax ID: 161551819
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: Yes
HUBZone-Owned: Yes
Research Institution Information:
Mote Marine Laboratory
Marine Microbiology Program
1600 Ken Thompson Parkway
Sarasota, FL 34236-
Contact: Kimberly Ritchie
Contact Phone: (941) 388-4441