Studies involve the deliberate infection of a healthy host, allowing for a greater understanding of the infecting pathogen and the potency/efficacy of a product. Many ethical and safety considerations need to be addressed for such studies, and assessment is dependent on the pathogen, route of administration and host species.

For those companies developing influenza vaccines, Charles River has added the capability to conduct short- and long-term influenza studies in ferrets and rodents under BSL-2 containment. Hemagglutination assay (HA), hemagglutination inhibition assay (HAI) and EID50 (embryo infectious dose) testing can also be conducted on samples generated during influenza studies.

View a video of our vaccine challenge facility


  • Various models available, including a vaginal candidiasis rat model
  • Use of individually ventilated cages (IVCs)
  • In-house microbiology department
  • Characterization of challenge material
  • Exploratory studies with the isolate
  • Evaluation of candidate antigens for bacterial challenge studies
  • Viral challenge studies and adjuvant selection testing
  • Short- and long-term influenza studies in ferrets and rodents


  • Antibiotics
  • Antifungals
  • Medical Countermeasures (MCMs), including countermeasures for botulinum toxin in all seven serotypes

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