Laboratories of Comparative Immunology & Virology for Companion Animals (LCIV-CA)

Bikash Sahay
Department: Department of Infectious Diseases & Immunology

Bikash Sahay

Subhashinie Kariyawasam
Department: Department of Comparative, Diagnostic & Population Medicine

Subhashinie Kariyawasam BVSc, PhD, DACVM, DACPV, DACVPM, DABMM

Apichai Tuanyok
Department: Department of Infectious Diseases & Immunology

Apichai Tuanyok

Janet K Yamamoto
Department: Department of Comparative, Diagnostic & Population Medicine

Janet K Yamamoto

Scientific Missions

  1. Develop veterinary vaccines and immunotherapeutics for companion animals with focus on cats, dogs, and horses
    • Pan-coronavirus vaccine(s) for companion animals (cats, dogs, and hamsters)
    • Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) immunotherapeutic cure
    • T-cell based therapeutic FIV vaccine to prevent immunosuppression in FIV-infected cats
    • Prophylactic DNA/mRNA FIV vaccine
    • Feline, canine, and equine erythropoietin therapy
    • Feline, canine, and equine granulocyte-colony stimulating factor therapy
  2. Provide Western blot or immunoblot diagnostics service for companion animals
    • Feline coronavirus/FIPV whole-virus immunoblot diagnostics
    • Canine coronavirus whole-virus immunoblot diagnostics
    • Feline immunodeficiency virus immunoblot diagnostics
    • Immunoblot diagnostics for other veterinary viral diseases
  3. Provide a species-specific lipid nanoparticle delivery (LNP) system for vaccine or drug delivery for companion animals
  4. Collaborate in a one-medicine mission with the Emerging Pathogen Institute to:
    • Develop a pan-coronavirus vaccine that prevents SARS-CoV-2 infection in humans
    • Evaluate the impact that emerging human viral pathogen(s) have on companion animals
    • Provide service on a LNP delivery system for vaccines and immunotherapeutics against emerging human viral pathogens (e.g., SARS-CoV-2)
    • Provide antibody and T-cell immune analyses, at cost, on human blood from convalescent subjects exposed to emerging viral pathogen(s), as well as from unexposed subjects
  5. Maintain the CVM Cat Breeding Program as a service to provide specific pathogen free cats, at cost, to CVM and UF faculty members working on feline research
  6. Collaborate with veterinary and human companies on patented products of LCIV-CA

Academic Missions

  1. Recruit and train CVM graduate student(s) on developing vaccines and immunodiagnostics
  2. Train pre-veterinary undergraduate students on veterinary immunodiagnostics and animal procedures
  3. Produce high-impact publications from collaborative research among LCIV-CA, CVM, and EPI faculty members
  4. Secure extramural funds for LCIV-CA, CVM, and/or EPI faculty collaborators