Animal Models of MERS-CoV

Creative Biolabs provides a wide range of animal model development services for coronavirus related programs. Our professional scientists are willing to help global customers set up detailed research plans based on their specific needs. Herein, we are happy to introduce our animal models for Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection.

MERS-CoV is a species in the lineage C of the β-coronavirus genus, which only contains bat coronaviruses. Infection with MERS-CoV in humans results in a range of different clinical manifestations, including fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, chest pain, myalgia, vomiting, and diarrhea. In severe cases, patients present with acute hypoxic respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation. Underlying comorbidities such as obesity, hypertension, diabetes mellitus type II and cardiac disease have been associated with a fatal outcome of MERS-CoV infection. Currently, no vaccines or effective antiviral drugs have been developed against MERS-CoV. Therefore, there is an urgent need for established animal models for dissection of the underlying mechanisms of pathogenicity of MERS-CoV and the preclinical evaluation of MERS-CoV-specific medical countermeasures.

Schematic of the replication cycle of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). Fig.1 Schematic of the replication cycle of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). (Durai, 2015)

hDPP4 Transgenic Mice Models at Creative Biolabs

To date, a variety of animal species, including mice, rabbits, hamsters, ferrets and non-human primates (NHP), have been tested as MERS-CoV infection models. However, the MERS-CoV spike (S) glycoprotein does not bind the murine DPP4 protein efficiently, therefore preventing infection. Studies have indicated that only the NHP models show severe clinical symptoms upon inoculation. Based on our top animal experiment platform, Creative Biolabs has developed transgenic hDPP4 mice for the evaluation of prophylactic and therapeutic medical countermeasures. Using an hDPP4 expression cassette, our transgenic mice could express human DPP4 in all tissues. When challenged with MERS-CoV, a fatal disease course ensued with inflammatory disease involving lung and brain tissues.

Our Advantages

  • Abundant experience in animal model generation and project management
  • GLP-compliant and IACUC-regulated facility
  • Best pre- and after-sale service with relatively low price
  • Accurate timeline of the entire development process

Creative Biolabs offers a broad variety of animal models for the research of coronavirus infection. With years of experience in the field of pharmacology and pharmacodynamics studies as well as excellent professional skills, our scientists are willing to assist you in identifying the most appropriate disease models for your research of interest. You can explore our extensive and broad-based library of animal models to find the best-fit one you need. For more detailed information, please feel free to contact us.


  1. Durai, P.; et al. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus: transmission, virology and therapeutic targeting to aid in outbreak control. Experimental & molecular medicine. 2015, 47(8), pp.e181-e181.
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