The actual documents of the DEFUSE proposal are not available. The following is from DRASTIC website:
Technical Area 1 Host-Pathogen Prediction:
Ross: Predictive and validation models; data management
Olival: Host-pathogen models
Zambrana: Special models; Biogeography
Wang/Baric: Validation in laboratory
Shi: Multispecies viral detection
Zhu: Specimen collection; Bat host ecology
Zhang: Field logistics
Technical Area 2 Intervention Development:
Rocke: Lab and field deployment; Safety and efficacy
Karesh: Intervention policy and scale
Ross: Intervention deployment models
Unidad: Deployment mechanics; Scalable delivery
Baric: Targeted boosting; Humanized mice
Epstein: Captive bats; Field deployment
Shi: Suppression validation
Wang: Broadscale boosting; Captive experiments; Batified mice
The proposal for wide scale inoculation of bats in the wild using aerosolized inoculum delivery has never been publicly released or opened to the wider scientific community for discussion as to potential risks associated with this plan. This is a specialist area of research of Dr Rocke, Dr. Ainslie and Dr. Unidad (PARC) who have previously researched and developed the technological solutions necessary to make this possible:
Dr. Jerome Unidad is a researcher PARC, (2018a) at PARC (owned by Xerox) (PARC, 2018d), who developed the Filament Extension Atomizer (FEA) (PARC, 2019). This technology is used to spray bats with scalable high viscosity mists that stick to their skin or that are edible (PARC, 2018c).
PARC previously partnered with NHWC to develop a vaccine for White Nose Syndrome (WNS) for US bats, using FEA as the technological solution to administer vaccines via aerosol delivery (PARC, 2018b).
Dr. Tonie Rocke is a researcher at USGS National Wildlife Health Centre (NWHC in the DEFUSE proposal). She has previously worked on transdermal application of vaccines against rabies in vampire bats ``The feasibility of controlling rabies in vampire bats through topical application of vaccines” (USFWS, 2019), also “Infectivity of attenuated poxvirus vaccine vectors and immunogenicity of a raccoon pox vectored rabies vaccine in the Brazilian Free-tailed bat” (Stading et al., 2016). There were doubts and concerns about her work:
“These vaccine candidates use a viral vector (attenuated raccoon poxvirus, RCN) genetically modified to express highly-conserved fungal and specific Pd antigens. While these vaccines and other potential treatments continue to be developed, there is a need for safe and effective methods of treatment delivery” (USFWS, 2019).
Another similar project:
“We recently developed a new recombinant rabies vaccine specifically for bats with available sequences from the rabies Phylogroup I glycoprotein. This sequence was cloned into raccoon pox virus (RCN) and the efficacy of this novel RCN-MoG vaccine was tested in big brown bats. Field studies are currently being conducted in Peru and Mexico to test the feasibility of oral and topical delivery of vaccine and transfer rates between vampire batsusing biomarker-labelled jelly (without vaccine)” EEFMVZ (2021).
Dr. Ainslie is a Professor at the UNC Department of Biomedical Engineering and the UNC Department of Microbiology and Immunology (Pharmacy UNC, 2021), who works on new polymers for vaccines and electrospray for fabrication of immune targeting microparticles (nanoparticles).
Her publications include “Historical Perspective of Clinical Nano and Microparticle Formulations for Delivery of Therapeutics'' (Batty et al., 2021), “Electrospray for generation of drug delivery and vaccine particles applied in vitro and in vivo” (Steipel et .,2019). “Injectable, Ribbon-Like Microconfetti Biopolymer Platform for Vaccine APPLICATIONS'' (Moore et al., 2020), “Considerations for Size, Surface Charge, Polymer Degradation, Co‐Delivery, and Manufacturability in the Development of Polymeric Particle Vaccines for Infectious Diseases” (Genito et al.,2020).