The overall goal of this G20 proposal is to create a shared pig facility for biomedical research at Virginia Tech. This renovation will facilitate collaboration between Virginia Tech and adjacent institutes on research activities that use pigs as a model. Our milking parlor will be renovated to be a state-of-art facility to house and run trials with laboratory level pigs. Large animal models such as pigs can be a great resource in biomedicine because prior to clinical trials pigs can translate knowledge obtained from rodent based studies. However, housing standards for laboratory pigs is unique due to their size and physiology. VT has a critical mass of researchers who use pigs as a biomedical model, however they lack a modern facility. This limits their ability to conduct biomedical research with pigs. Ou proposed renovation will affect active funding of over 8 million dollars. The new facility will consist of the following components: 1. a new floor plan that separates pigs into rooms that uniquely accommodate farrowing (when a sow gives birth to piglets), a neonatal piglet nursery and a research pigs holding room 2. an environmental control system that can control temperature year round 3. new, wider caging with removable panels that allow bigger/longer pigs to be housed separately or together (for social enrichment)4. card key access at all doors to maintain BL1-N-compliant conditions 5. a loading dock with stairways linked to the existing building to move pigs efficiently 6. a personnel prep and gowning room so that animal handlers will be separated and properly prepared before entering the facility. This proposed plan will upgrade our housing of pigs so that the facility can be suitable for USDA-regulation and meet the requirements of the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. This new facility will be used by over 20 researchers in Virginia Tech over four departments and at least two collaborations with adjacent universities. Therefore, this proposed renovation at Virginia Tech will enhance PHS funded research, will advance biomedical studies using large animal models for translational biology, and will positively impact interdisciplinary research among researchers at Virginia Tech and outside of Virginia Tech.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Office of The Director, National Institutes of Health (OD)
Grants for Repair, Renovation and Modernization of Existing Research Facilities (G20)
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Scientific and Technical Review Board on Biomedical and Behavioral Research Facilities (STOD)
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Mccullough, Willie
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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Veterinary Sciences
Earth Sciences/Resources
United States
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