A greater awareness of multi-drug resistant bacteria, the repeated outbreak of re-emerging or newly emerging diseases, as well as our increased technical abilities to pinpoint or introduce genetic mutations in pathogens and host cells are currently resulting in increased spending in vaccine development and stem cell research. This new Centre has been created to be a leader in the development and translation of vaccines and regenerative medicine approaches for animal health, with follow on applications into human health.
The key vision for the new Centre for Vaccinology and Regenerative Medicine (CVRM) will focus on the cumulative use of knowledge, techniques and technologies provided by the Centre’s dedicated researchers, in addition to expertise and facilities provided by other groups within the RVC including the Centre for Emerging, Endemic and Exotic and Diseases (CEEED - Damer Blake, Sharon Kendall), Livestock Food System (LFS - Barbara Haessler) and the Imaging Suite Facility. Dirk Werling, as Director of the Centre, will lead the cross-departmental Integrated Livestock and Food Systems (ILFS) Research Group.
The specific platform activities will include:
- Propagation of stem cells in a controlled and repeatable set-up
- Deletion/replacement of genetic information in host-cell and microbial genomes, incl CRISP/Cas approaches
- Assessment of genetic mutations on cellular function in an in-vitro environment, potentially leading to genotype-to-phenotype functionality
- Selection of most appropriate treatment method in organ in-vitro cultures, incl mRNA vaccines
- Reduction of clinical test groups necessary by introducing state-of-the art in vitro approaches
- Evaluation of ethics and safety issues to address with public and regulatory bodies, i.e., in the context of gene-doping Assessment of manufacturing, cost, and scale-up challenges through the development of platform technologies in both areas