Ongoing Research
Ongoing Research into Canine Parvovirus

             Epidemiology of the Virus
             Research on Canine Parvovirus continues today, as scientists monitor the natural antigenic drift of the virus on an international scale, as the virus adapts to veterinarian's vigilant efforts of vaccinating animals to prevent the disease.  This constant research not only identifies new strains of Canine Parvovirus as they develop, but these studies also act as sentinel projects, allowing countries to stay appraised as to what strains of the virus are present within their borders1.

             The importance of discovering the development and tracking the circulation of new strains of Canine Parvovirus cannot be overemphasized.  Although vaccination against the virus occurs worldwide, the development of new serotypes of the disease that are not included in vaccine formulations can lead to the development of the disease.  An example of this was the development and spread of the Canine Parvovirus Glu-426 mutant that circulated in Italy in 2001 and 20022.  Although vaccination against the disease occurs regularly in the country, the development of this mutation has caused the disease in many infected animals.  This sentinel project allowed the detection and genetic characterization of the disease so that protective measures could be taken to protect the canine population in the area.

             Future Vaccination Options
             Although current vaccination choices do provide an adequate level of protection against the virus, research continues to be conducted for a number of reasons.  Vaccines are modified to include all of the serotypes of the virus that are circulating in an area.  That way, adequate protection against all serotypes of the virus can be generated in susceptible animals.  Continued research and development into the formulation of vaccinations also occurs, in order to ensure that the level of protection generated against the viral antigens is sufficient to provide adequate immunity against the disease3,4.  This ensures that all vaccinated animals will be protected from infection by the virus.

             Utilizing Parvovirus for the Treatment of Cancer

             One of the characteristics of virus of the family Parvoviridae is that they replicate in rapidly producing cells.  This has the family of viruses interesting as a potential source for the treatment of neoplastic conditions in humans.  Currently, experimentation is being conducted in which parvoviruses are being genetically modified to specifically target cells with receptor subtypes present only on cancer cells5.  It is theorized that, as the cancer cells divide, the virus will replicate and eventually cause lysis within the infected cells, there by killing the neoplastically transformed cells6.  Although this represents a promising form of therapy for a variety of conditions, more research needs to be conducted before a standardized treatment protocol can be developed.
Neoplastic Cell


            1 Davies M.  Canine parvovirus strains in the UK.  The Veterinary Record.  2007.  160(12): 416.

            2 Martella V, Cavalli A, Pratelli A, Bozzo G, Camero M, Buonavoglia D, Narcisi D, Tempesta M, Buonavoglia C.  A canine parvovirus mutant is spreading in Italy.  Journal of    
               Clinical Microbiology.  2004.  42(3): 1333-1336.

            3 Truyen U.  Evolution of canine parvovirus – a need for new vaccines?  Veterinary Microbiology.  2006.  117(1):9-13.

            4 Ilott M.  Efficacy of vaccination against canine parvovirus.  The Veterinary Record.  2006.  159(21):722-723.

            5 Singh P, Destito G, Schneemann A, Manchester M.  Canine parvovirus-like particles, a novel nanomaterial for tumor targeting.  Journal of Nanobiotechnology.  2006.  4:2.

            6 Geletneky K, Herrero Y, Calle M, Rommelaere J, Schlehofer J.  Oncolytic potential of rodent parvoviruses for cancer therapy in humans: a brief review.  Journal of Veterinary
               Medicine.  B, Infectious Diseases and Veterinary Public Health.  2005.  52(7-8): 327-330.