In an attempt to establish understanding in viral infection in pig’s brain, ultimately contributing to minimization of economic losses in swine industry, Dr. Chailangkarn has led a project aiming to derive porcine neural cells from induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) and determine their susceptibility to highly pathogenic porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (HP-PRRS) and neuropathogenesis upon infection.
Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) remains a major threat to swine industry. Clinical symptoms include severe reproductive failure in sows and respiratory disorders in piglets. Atypical highly pathogenic PRRS virus (HP-PRRSV) infects neural cells particularly primary microglia, innate immune cells in central nervous system, isolated from newborn pigs, possibly responsible for severe neurological symptoms in infected animals. The study, unfortunately, required sacrifice of newborn swine when specified cells were needed for experiments. This fact triggers the researcher’s interest to find techniques in replacement of experiments requiring animal sacrifice.
The project also explores susceptibility and response of porcine neurons to HP-PRRSV which has not yet been reported due to the unavailability of relevant porcine models such as porcine neural cells.
Dr. Chailangkarn, UC San Diego Alumni, is a stem cell biologist from the Virology and Cell Technology Lab, Virology and Antibody Technology Research Unit. He was awarded the 2018 BIOTEC Young Fellow’s Research Grant which supports interdisciplinary, innovative research project with high potential for meaningful impact led by exceptional early-career researcher.
Posted on 4 June 2018.