University awarded US grant for work on Valley fever vaccine

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(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

The University of Arizona is getting a $4.8 million National Institutes of Health grant for research work aimed at developing a Valley fever vaccine for dogs and later possibly humans.

The university's announcement Thursday says its Valley Fever Center for Excellence is working on the project with Colorado State University and Anivive Lifesciences Inc., a Long Beach, California-based biotechnology company.

[RELATED: Genetic tests on pets could lead to better treatments for Valley Fever]

Valley fever is a sometimes deadly respiratory illness caused by spores found in soil. Most cases occur in California and Arizona.

Dr. John Gagliani is the project's principal investigator and the University of Arizona center's director. He says the project's goal is to test and possibly license a candidate vaccine to protect dogs from contracting Valley fever.

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