U.K. Genetic Study May Shed Light on COVID-19

Pet susceptibility to coronaviruses being studied

According to Vet Times, researchers at the United Kingdom’s (U.K.) Royal Veterinary College have received a grant of almost £200,000 (about $259,000) by U.K. Research and Innovation to examine companion-animal susceptibility to two common coronaviruses: canine respiratory coronavirus, which can contribute to kennel cough in dogs; and feline enteric coronavirus, which can lead to FIP in cats. Both viruses are similar to SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19.

The study, named MASCOT (Mapping Animal Susceptibility to Coronavirus: Outcomes and Transcriptomics), could help explain why certain people are more susceptible to COVID-19 and could help identify new treatment targets. This study is part of One Health, a collaborative, multisectoral, and transdisciplinary approach at the local, regional, national, and global levels focused on achieving optimal health outcomes by recognizing the interconnection between people, animals, plants, and their shared environment. The CDC’s One Health Office leads the One Health efforts in the United States and abroad.