The University of California Zika Virus Project – Overview

//The University of California Zika Virus Project – Overview
The University of California Zika Virus Project – Overview 2017-09-06T21:47:35+00:00

Zika Project Overview

The UC Zika Virus Project is an interdisciplinary collaboration between scientists UC Davis and UC San Francisco that is guided by the goal of developing effective interventions and prevention strategies for Zika virus infections in humans.  The collaboration emerged from the recognition of Zika as a global health crisis and the unique resources available at the California National Primate Research Center.  To support rapid dissemination of data to the scientific community, the UC Zika Virus Project team will provide ongoing updates on study progress.


The UC team is working closely with groups at other National Primate Research Centers and universities to ensure that that efforts are not needlessly duplicated and that data is shared as it becomes available. The CNPRC, like the other National Primate Research Centers, is funded via a P51 grant from the National Institutes of Health - initial support for our project will come from that 'base grant'.



    History NOW YouTube interview with Dr. Koen Van Rompay.

    Up-to-date information about the project can be accessed via our Project Updates, and Project Data pages.


    An NPRC compilation of research and news on the Zika virus can be found here.


CNPRCfemales&infants©K.West-CNPRC,002Beginning March 16, 2016, we are conducting a small research project with rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) that we hope will ultimately allow us to develop safe and effective vaccines and treatments.

Our scientific findings will be published in as close to real time as possible.

Project Team

The research team consists of the core group of scientists who are conducting the initial project work.  Other team members may be added as the project expands.






UC Davis
Koen Van Rompay, DVM, PhD – Project Leader
Eliza Bliss-Moreau, PhD
Lark Coffey, PhD
Paul Luciw, PhD
John H. Morrison, PhD
Amir Ardeshir, DVM, MPVM, PhD
CNPRC Anatomical and Clinical Pathology Services

UC San Francisco & Blood Systems Research Institute (BSRI)

Eric Delwart, PhD
Michael Busch, MD, PhD
Graham Simmons, PhD
Marion Lanteri, PhD

An Important Note

We are electing to share the data from this project as it becomes available because of the enormous health crisis that Zika virus represents. Very little is known about the virus, the course of infection, or its long-term health effects. Precise experimental control is critical for sorting out these details. We believe that the only way to prevent and treat Zika viral infections, and ultimately help those who have already been infected, is to share data quickly, transparently, and without fear that our openness will be abused.

Our choice is unusual – both because of the process by which science typically unfolds and because experience informs us that sharing data on animal research, and especially nonhuman primate research, leaves us vulnerable to misperceptions and criticisms from those that oppose it. We take the welfare of humans and nonhuman animals very seriously. It is for this reason and because so little is known about the disease progression and biology of Zika virus, that we have undertaken this work.

We thank the team at Wisconsin National Primate Research Center for leading the way in this transparency.