Center for AIDS Research

Animal Biohazard Core


 animal biohazard chanThe overall goal of the Einstein-Montefiore CFAR Biohazard Animal Core is to enable Einstein investigators, through the provision of a safe and effective facility and a highly trained support staff, to apply the animal modeling approach to pathogen research with HIV and AIDS-related opportunistic pathogens that requires bio-containment. 



Core Mission  

  • To provide a biohazard containment laboratory that is outfitted with state-of-the-art apparatus and equipment for safe, efficient, and in-depth analysis of Biosafety-Level-2/3 (BSL2/3) pathogens using appropriate animal models.                                                 
  • To provide assistance for researchers in the design of experiments involving in vivo modeling of BSL2/3 pathogens, in the choice of suitable mouse strains (including supplying specialized transgenic and knockout mice), in carrying out experimental procedures, in sample collection and processing, as well as in data interpretation.  
  • To enable CFAR investigators, particularly those inexperienced in animal studies, to extend their research programs to include in vivo modeling of infection with HIV and AIDS-associated pathogens. 

Core Facilities 

  • BSL3-level containment for housing infected mice
  • BSL3-containment aerosolization infection units
  • Animal Behavioral Study Facility for infected mice
  • In Vivo Bioluminescent and Fluorescent Imaging Facility for infected mice

Core Services 

  • Technical support for animal modeling of pathophysiology of infection with HIV and HIV-related pathogens, and evaluating efficacy of new treatments and vaccines.
  • Infection of mice by aerogenic challenge with Mtb including MDR and XDR Mtb isolates.
  • Infection of mice by intra-cranial inoculation
  • Access to a range of transgenic and humanized mouse models to study in vivo HIV infection and co-infection with HIV-associated pathogens and evaluate new treatment and prevention strategies.
  • In vivo imaging of mice for the evaluation of infection by quantification of bioluminescent reporter gene expression. (see Figure for example of quantification of HIV infection using IVIS imager)
  • Analysis of the impact of infection and murine cognitive function using video analysis of maze behavior.

Core Training Programs 

  • Performance of animal procedures under appropriate biohazard containment.
  • Administration of pharmacological or biological agents via aerosol, intravenous, intraperitoneal or intracerebral routes.
  • Necropsy and dissection of mice to harvest infected tissues molecular proteomic, cellular and histological analysis.
  • Tissue preparation methods for immunological, pathological and molecular analysis.
  • Utilization of IVIS imaging system for monitoring in vivo infection.
  • Use of video-monitored water maze for behavioral studies in infected mice.

 Charge-back fees 

  • Infection of mice by aerogenic challenge: Technician time and supplies, $50 per hour;  
  • Infection of mice by intra-cranial inoculation: Technician time and supplies: $30 per hour;
  • Use of IVIS Spectrum imager: $30 per hour;
  • Use of video-monitored water maze: $30 per hour; 
  • Humanized mice: Thy/Liv-SCID-hu mice, $200 each; HSC-NSG mice, $100 each  
  • Specialty Animal strains: NOD/SCID/IL2R (NSG) knockout mice: $40 each, Rag2-/- gc-/- mice: $60 each
To access Core services or further info on Charge-back fees please contact Dr. John Chan.


Recent Core Publications

1. Nixon B, Fakioglu E, Stefanidou M, Wang Y, Dutta M, Goldstein H, Herold BC. Genital Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2 Infection in Humanized HIV-Transgenic Mice Triggers HIV Shedding and Is Associated With Greater Neurological Disease. J Infect Dis. 2013. Epub 2013/08/31. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jit472. PubMed PMID: 23990571.

2. Nixon B, Stefanidou M, Mesquita PM, Fakioglu E, Segarra T, Rohan L, Halford W, Palmer KE, Herold BC. Griffithsin protects mice from genital herpes by preventing cell-to-cell spread. J Virol. 2013;87(11):6257-69. Epub 2013/03/29. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00012-13. PubMed PMID: 23536670; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3648100.

3. Seay K, Qi X, Zheng JH, Zhang C, Chen K, Dutta M, Deneroff K, Ochsenbauer C, Kappes JC, Littman DR, Goldstein H. Mice transgenic for CD4-specific human CD4, CCR5 and Cyclin T1 expression: A new model for investigating HIV-1 transmission and treatment efficacy. PLoS ONE. 2013;8(5):e63537. Epub 2013/05/22. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0063537. PubMed PMID: 23691059; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3655194.

4. Szymczak WA, Davis MJ, Lundy SK, Dufaud C, Olszewski M, Pirofski LA. X-linked immunodeficient mice exhibit enhanced susceptibility to Cryptococcus neoformans Infection. mBio. 2013;4(4). Epub 2013/07/04. doi: 10.1128/mBio.00265-13. PubMed PMID: 23820392; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3705448.  

Core Leadership

John Chan, MD

Lawrence Herbst, DVM, PhD
Associate Director


ivis hiv infected mice 

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