Cats may play an important role, says research

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Unew research claims that cats may play an important role in the search for a vaccine against the new coronavirus.

Research, which is based on the way in which Covid-19 affects pets, was published this Tuesday by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and studied seven cats and three dogs infected by the virus.

Colorado State University researchers found that while cats can infect other cats through contact direct, dogs do not spread the virus among themselves. None of the animals developed clinical symptoms during the study.

“Cats are highly susceptible at infection, with a prolonged period of oral and nasal viral elimination that is not accompanied by clinical signs and is capable of contact transmission direct for other cats, ”wrote the researchers. “Resistance to reinfection it is a promise that a vaccine strategy can protect cats and humans ”.

Because cats can spread the virus to each other and have a strong natural immune response to the virus, the researchers suggest that they may be useful in helping to test candidate vaccines.

“Cats develop significant levels of neutralizing antibodies and are resistant to reinfection, although the duration of immunity is not known currently. This can be a useful measure for testing both human and animal candidate vaccines, ”said the researchers.

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