Igniting Novel Research with Current and New Animal Models

Drug discovery and innovative therapeutic approaches in the era of personalized medicine requires the use of animal models that closely recapitulate human disease. To address these challenges, the California National Primate Research Center (CNPRC) at UC Davis is initiating the MERIT (Model Enablement for Research and Interdisciplinary Translation) Program with the goal of accelerating translational research by establishing the most appropriate animal model to answer critical scientific questions. The CNPRC combines unique resources with scientific expertise for the development of new animal models that can support innovative research with direct human applications.

WHO is this program for?

Companies interested in:

  • Partnership opportunities for nonhuman primate research
  • Pilot projects involving therapeutic targets and those that address key FDA requirements
  • Utilizing a primate model with strong similarities and high cross-specificity to humans


WHY the UC Davis CNPRC?

  • World-class biomedical research scientists experienced in nonhuman primate models of human disease
  • Full-service, AAALAC-accredited research facility with on-site veterinary hospital and Good Laboratory Practices (GLP) capabilities
  • Affiliated with top-ranked UC Davis School of Medicine and the #1 School of Veterinary Medicine



Through this partnership with the CNPRC:

  • The partner company will not be responsible for any accrued costs associated with study animals or for paying for allocation of animals prior to the start of the study. This represents the UC Davis cost share for this program.
  • The partner company will be responsible for all research and animal-related expenses incurred during the study.
  • The collaboration must meet mutually agreeable project goals.



  • Extensive cost savings on development of predictive nonhuman primate models leading to human clinical trials
  • Access unique opportunities at the CNPRC across the lifespan, through thematic strengths in:
    • Brain, Mind, and Behavioral Disorders
    • Infectious Diseases
    • Regenerative Medicine and Gene Therapy
    • Reproductive and Developmental Disorders
    • Respiratory Diseases
  • Current CNPRC models include: SIV infection-monkey model of AIDS, CMV infection, neuropsychiatric disorders including anxiety, depression, and autism, obstructive kidney disease, cell/bone marrow transplantation, obesity, allergens, ozone, metabolic diseases, and inflammatory diseases including pediatric and adult asthma


Please email: conductingresearch_cnprc@ucdavis.edu for more information about the MERIT program.

Download a pdf of the MERIT Program flyer here.


More information on CNPRC nonhuman primate research programs, core and other specialized services may be found at www.cnprc.ucdavis.edu.