In this episode, AABP Executive Director Dr. Fred Gingrich is joined by AABP member Dr. Chris Chase to discuss corona viruses in humans and animals. Chase is a veterinary immunologist from South Dakota State University. During our discussion, we touch on the similarities of COVID-19 in humans and what we have previously used in bovine veterinary medicine and other areas of the veterinary industry. We discuss the role of body condition on the immune system and why obesity in cattle or humans can negatively impact the response to viruses. Chase discusses some of the unique characteristics of corona viruses such as a single spike protein that is the dominant antigen and how they use this spike protein to gain entrance into the cell. He states that the job of the immune system is not to defend, but to maintain health and homeostasis. When we have immune-malfunction, either due to an exaggerated immune response or immune suppression, we lose this homeostasis and it can affect multiple body systems. He describes the causes and the results of a cytokine storm and how both non-steroidal and steroidal anti-inflammatories can be used in cattle and people.
Chase describes how monoclonal antibodies are produced in a different manner today which has resulted in more widespread production of this important tool. He describes how the first monoclonal antibody was developed for use in calves to prevent K-99 colibacillosis. We also discuss the various platform vaccine technologies and the first nucleic acid vaccine was developed for veterinary medicine. He describes the safety and efficacy of mRNA vaccines and their potential role in veterinary medicine. We wrap up our discussion by reviewing the role probiotics can play in prevention of disease as well as the use of ivermectin for viral diseases.
Veterinary medicine plays a critical role in the research and development of biotechnologies that can be used in both human and animal medicine. Veterinarians are an important part of the One Health concept, both in understanding population medicine, the role of disease prevention and the management of zoonotic disease.