Dieter Lutticken Award 2009 for development of in vitro bovine respiratory tract organ culture model


The Dieter Lütticken Award 2009, a prestigious international annual award dedicated to alternatives in animal testing for veterinary medicines, goes to Dr. A.W. (Dan) Tucker, senior lecturer in veterinary public health at the University of Cambridge (United Kingdom). He will receive the € 20,000 award, which is sponsored by Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, for the development of an in vitro air interface respiratory tract organ culture model for investigation of bovine respiratory diseases.

Dr. Tucker, in collaboration with Prof. Duncan Maskell at the Department of Veterinary Medicine, University of Cambridge and Prof. Josh Slater at the Royal Veterinary College, London have established a physiologically relevant, rapid, and sensitive in vitro air interface respiratory tract organ culture model to analyze host-pathogen interactions following single and mixed infections with the respiratory pathogens Mannheimia haemolytica and bovine herpesvirus-1 (BHV-1).* This model has replaced the use of animals in some studies of respiratory disease and has the potential to be used in developing new vaccines. It has been developed from early work with the model using organs from dogs and horses and has also been developed as a comparable ex vivo pig model. The work was supported by a grant in 2007 by the National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs).

Dr. Tucker said, 'This model allows us to reproduce the in-life conditions of key parts of the respiratory system and shows real promise for vaccine discovery when combined with emerging high-throughput screening technologies.'

'This in vitro organ culture model provides promise as a research and early development tool to replace the use of live animals in the search for new candidate vaccines and anti-infective agents for management of bovine respiratory diseases', added Prof. Coenraad Hendriksen, chair of an independent expert jury panel and Professor of Alternatives to Animal Testing at Utrecht University (the Netherlands).

Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, a leading global animal health company, sponsors the international Dieter Lütticken Award for alternatives in animal testing for veterinary medicines to support individual scientists and life sciences research institutions that make significant contributions to the 3R-concept, i.e. in reducing, refining and/or replacing the use of animals in testing for development and manufacturing of veterinary medicines. The Company is a member of the European Partnership for Alternative Approaches to Animal Testing (EPAA), a consortium of the European Commission, universities, NGOs and industry. The partners are committed to pooling knowledge, research and resources to accelerate the development, validation and acceptance of alternative approaches to animal testing.

The amount of the award is € 20,000 and will be presented to Dr. Tucker on September 3, 2010 during the award session at the 'Linz Congress 2010', which will be held in cooperation with the 13th Annual Congress of the European Society for Alternatives to Animal Testing (EUSAAT), the 16th International Congress on In Vitro Toxicology (ESTIV) and the 16th Congress on Alternatives to Animal Testing. This joint meeting which will take place in Linz (Austria) from September 2-4, 2010 (

Candidates for the Dieter Lütticken Award are selected by a jury panel composed of experts from public institutions in the animal health and animal testing sector. Applications for the Dieter Lütticken Award 2010 can be submitted until November 15, 2010. For submissions and more details, please contact Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health - Global Communications Animal Health (

About the Dieter Lütticken Award

The Dieter Lütticken Award for alternatives for animal testing in veterinary sciences was established in 2004 and is granted each year to academic scientists or not-for-profit life sciences research institutions that have made a significant contribution to the 3R-concept for the R&D and production of veterinary medicines. The international award's scope covers in vitro models used in R&D which replace animal testing for licensing purposes, methods that improve quality of life of laboratory animals as well as studies aimed at reducing or avoiding the use of animals in efficacy, safety and quality testing in the production of biologicals and pharmaceuticals for animals. The award is named after Dr. Dieter Lϋtticken, a committed researcher in microbiology and virology. He has guided and shaped R&D at former Intervet for more than a quarter of a century. Dr. Lϋtticken retired from Intervet in 2003 as Vice-President and Head of R&D. Previous winners of the Dieter Lütticken Award are: Prof. Andrew Hemphill, Switzerland (2004), Dr. Mark Stevens, United Kingdom (2006), Prof. George Gettinby, United Kingdom (2007) and Dr. Ivo Claassen, The Netherlands (2008).

About Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health

Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, based in Boxmeer, the Netherlands, is focused on the research, development, manufacturing and marketing of animal health products. The company offers customers one of the broadest, most innovative animal Health portfolios, spanning products to support performance and to prevent, treat and control disease in all major farm and companion animal species. Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health; subsidiaries of Merck & Co., Inc., Whitehouse Station NJ, USA. For more information, visit

About Merck

Today's Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well. Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, and consumer care and animal health products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. Merck. Be well. For more information, visit

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