For AICAP 2, we propose to continue developing reagents, technologies, and human resources aimed at detection and eradication of influenza from economically important poultry species. Furthermore, highly pathogenic avian influenza may pose a threat to public health, as evidenced by the direct transmission of H5, H7, and H9 influenza A viruses from poultry to humans. Thus, our efforts will also have a major impact on theprevention and control of zoonotic outbreaks of avian influenza. In this application, the efforts of multiple institutions across the country will concentrate on three major specific aims each containing several objectives: <P>
Specific Aim 1: <BR> Objective 1: To determine the molecular basis for the adaptation of influenza A viruses from wild aquatic birds in land-based poultry, particularly chickens, turkeys and quail. <BR>Objective 2: To determine the molecular parameters for interspecies transmission and virulence of swine influenza viruses in turkeys and vice-versa and the potential susceptibility of swine to other avian influenza strains. <BR>Objective 3: To determine the molecular basis for the differences in virulence and disease in different domestic land-based and aquatic birds infected with HPAI.
<P> Specific Aim 2: <BR>Objective 4: Understanding the natural history of avian influenza viruses in wild birds and the temporal-spatial-host-genomic relationships of avian influenza viruses infecting wild birds and poultry. <BR>Objective 5: To continue delivering and developing programs for in house depopulation, viral inactivation methods, and composting methods for use in the case of catastrophic mortality or depopulation.
<P>Specific Aim 3: <BR>Objective 6: To continue developing critical diagnostic tests and strategies, <BR>Objective 7: To continue improving and developing alternative vaccines for avian influenza control.
NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: For AICAP 2 our long-term goal continues to be the development of knowledge-based integrated approaches to detect, control and prevent the emergence of influenza viruses in avian species of economic importance. Aquatic birds are the primary reservoir of influenza A viruses. Often, some of these viruses cross the species barrier infecting non-natural hosts such as land-based poultry, including chickens and turkeys among others, without overt clinical signs. However, for reasons that are still poorly understood, influenza viruses circulating in land-based poultry can increase their virulence and cause important economic losses due to mortality and trade restrictions. The molecular mechanisms that lead to the emergence of influenza viruses in land-based poultry are poorly understood, however their consequences are well known by all, e.g. farmers, the poultry industry, government officials, and scientists. Poultry production in the United States has increased from 3 billion to 7 billion broilers since the 1960s. It is the most important source of meat protein in the human diet in many countries around the world. US poultry production amounts to approximately 18 per cent of total production worldwide. Effective detection, control and prevention of avian influenza are of the utmost importance to maintain US leadership in world poultry product markets and such efforts will make a significant contribution towards national food security. These goals cannot be accomplished without solid scientific knowledge of the molecular and epizootiological bases for the interspecies transmission of influenza A viruses including the factors contributing to high virulence in poultry and swine. To be useful this knowledge needs to be developed in the context of actual production scenarios. We propose to continue developing reagents, technologies, and human resources aimed at detection and eradication of influenza from economically important poultry species. Furthermore, highly pathogenic avian influenza may pose a threat to public health, as evidenced by the direct transmission of H5, H7, and H9 influenza A viruses from poultry to humans. Thus, our efforts will also have a major impact on the prevention and control of zoonotic outbreaks of avian influenza.
APPROACH: Integrated Implementation. Accomplishment of these research objectives will involve the participation of all project leaders and PIs. Communication among the different members in this proposal is first priority to achieve the goals proposed. Harmonized protocols and operating procedures have been and will continue to be discussed and implemented to ensure consistent results obtained by different laboratories. A logic model has been adopted to measure inputs, outputs and outcomes. Tracking progress will be accomplished primarily by quarterly review of the reports entered into the secure website, particularly the near-term milestones. The co-PDs will be responsible for tracking the progress in their respective interest areas. Any task that is falling behind schedule, consuming more resources than planned, or is encountering unforeseen difficulties becomes the focus of corrective action. Any corrective action will be made in a positive, rather than a punitive, manner and is intended to maximize productivity of the individual PI and the overall AICAP project. The process of evaluating progress is constant: estimating what remains to be done, iterating the schedule, and communicating the results to all concerned.