CVM researchers awarded grants for turkey disease studies
February 6, 2024
College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) faculty member Sagar Goyal and researchers from the CVM Secure Food Systems team received grants from the University of Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station (MAES) to support research for turkey-related diseases and disease prevention measures.
Goyal was awarded grants for two projects, totalling $379,000. The first project, “Feed additives to combat turkey arthritis reovirus,” will evaluate the efficacy of probiotics and other additives for inactivating turkey arthritis reovirus. The second project, “mRNA vaccines to combat turkey arthritis reovirus,” will evaluate the safety and efficacy of three vaccines that have the potential to prevent arthritis reovirus infection, and that can be easily modified to protect against new viral strains. Both studies have the potential to significantly impact management of the disease, which is among the top of the National Turkey Federation’s list of priorities.
The Secure Food Systems team received $199,000 for “The evolution of influenza A viruses in immunosuppressed poultry,” a study that seeks to understand the role of the host immune status on the ability of influenza A virus (IAV) to change. The ongoing outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza are devastating and difficult to manage in part because the IAV strain causing the outbreak continually evolves into new strains. The rate at which this change occurs may be enhanced when immune-suppressed birds are IAV-infected. The study will examine the impact of infectious bursal disease, a ubiquitous disease of chickens that suppresses the immune system, and its impact on the evolution of IAV during co-infection.