Cotton Rat RSV Model
The cotton rat (Sigmodon hispidus) is susceptible to non-adapted human RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) and displays many features of human pathology when infected with RSV thus making it the model of choice for preclinical development of RSV vaccines and therapeutic agents.The predictive quality of the model is so high that treatments for severe disease advanced to clinical trials based on the results of efficacy and safety studies using cotton rats without the need for testing in primates. The cotton rat model, such as that optimized by Noble Life Sciences in partnership with IBT Bioservices, has been successfully used to test RSV vaccine and therapeutic candidates.
Determine the efficacy of vaccine or therapeutic agents against RSV infection as shown in the figure at right
Test adenoviral vector-based gene therapies
Study infectious disease pathogenesis
To demonstrate the use of the model for testing the efficacy of anti-viral agents, four animals were dosed with an anti-RSV antibody and then challenged with RSV at 4 x 104 PFU. Because the efficacy of test therapeutics and vaccines is best measured at the peak of infection, the animals were euthanized on day 5 and viral titers determined. Animals which received the anti-RSV monoclonal antibody showed a significant reduction in viral burden in the lungs compared to control animals.
Kinetic studies demonstrate the increase in viral titers in the first 2-5 days post infection followed by a decline. Viral load is dependent on the titer of the viral challenge dose. See figure at left.