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SBIR Phase I:Development of an Attenuated Babesia Vaccine for Cattle

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1013407
Agency Tracking Number: 1013407
Amount: $179,828.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: BC
Solicitation Number: NSF 09-609
Solicitation Year: 2010
Award Year: 2010
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
La Quinta Industrial Site 177 Balboa street
Mayaguez, PR 00680
United States
DUNS: 796818966
HUBZone Owned: Yes
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Ignacio Pino
 (787) 806-4100
Business Contact
 Ignacio Pino
Title: BEng
Phone: (787) 806-4100
Research Institution

This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project is designed to develop a vaccine to prevent infection of dairy and beef cattle with Babesia organisms following bites of vector Boophilus ticks. There is currently no killed vaccine that prevents initial infection with Babesia organisms when cattle are bitten by Babesia-carrying ticks, nor reduce levels of infection with Babesiais is being used. We will determine the best source of B. bigemina or B. bovis sporozoites, the optimal dose of irradiation with which to attenuate the sporozoites, the best method of preserving the sporozoites prior to inoculation into cattle, and the antibody response of cattle to different doses of attenuated sporozoites. These studies will establish the feasibility of producing sufficient numbers of attenuated Babesia sporozoites to immunize the cattle in those areas of the island of Puerto Rico that are endemic for babesiosis. The numbers of infected ticks needed to produce a defined number of vaccine doses will be established, and the level of antibody produced by a known number of Babesia organisms will be determined. This will provide the framework with which to scale up production of attenuated sporozoites in sufficient numbers to treat infected cattle on a national scale.
The broader impact/commercial potential of this project will be the production of a vaccine that can be used to treat cattle in regions of the US and the world where babesiosis is found. At least eight counties in Texas are under surveillance for tick transmission of Babesia, and more than $10 million of annual losses result from the disease in Puerto Rico alone. A cost-effective Babesia vaccine is expected to be in high demand in these areas, and would allow for the further commercial development of the dairy and beef cattle industries that is currently prevented by this disease.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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