Online course on ranavirus biology

Ranaviruses: Emerging Pathogens of Ecothermic Vertebrates

an online distance education course for professional development

Registration is open

Contributing Instructors:  Matthew J. Gray, Ph.D. (Professor, University of Tennessee; Director, Global Ranavirus Consortium [GRC]) will coordinate instruction with >20 additional scientists in the disciplines of veterinary medicine, microbiology, ecology, and mathematics contributing to instruction.


Meeting Location: Online via Zoom (Course at:, download Zoom at:

Course Duration:  3 February – 20 April 2016 (twelve 3-hr meetings)

Meeting Time:  Wednesdays, 15:05 – 18:05 hrs, León, Spain (=09:05 – 12:05 hrs, New York, USA)

NOTE: Due to the challenges with instructing across multiple time zones, all lectures will be recorded in real time and available via an iTunes site.

Course Goal: To increase the understanding of ranavirus-host interactions through a series of online lectures and activities led by ranavirus experts around the globe. 

Expected Outcomes: Upon completion of the course, participants will have a thorough understanding of the historical and current context of ranavirus die-offs, ranavirus phylogenetics, ecology and pathology of ranaviruses, how ranaviruses replicate and evade the host immune system, diagnostic techniques used to detect ranaviruses, and how to design ranavirus studies.


  • Open to all professionals and students.
  • Suggested continuing education (CE) hours = 45 hours (36 hours class + 9 hours out-of-class activities). If approval for CE credits is required by an organization, it is the participant’s responsibility to complete all necessary CE paperwork.
  • A certificate of completion will be provided by the GRC. A score of >70% (on 100% scale) must be earned to acknowledge successful completion.
  • Course fee = $250 for GRC members, $300 for non-members (Registration here!)

Tentative Topics and Schedule


MonthDayTopics 1
February3Introduction to Course
How to Use Zoom
History of Ranaviruses
Current Status of Ranavirus Die-offs
February10Ranavirus Phylogeny
Ranavirus Evolution
Captivity Induced Evolution
February17CMTV Outbreaks in Europe
CGSV and SGIV in China
February24EHNV and BIV in Australia
ATV in North America
FV3 in North America
March2How Ranaviruses Replicate
Ranavirus Immune Evasion
Host Immune Responses
March9Pathology in Amphibians
Pathology in Reptiles
Pathology in Fishes
March16Ecology of Ranaviruses
March30Anthropogenic Stressors
Frog Farms and Ranavirus
Pathogen Pollution and Trade
April6OPEN: Current Topics
April13Diagnostic Techniques: qPCR, IHC, ELISA
April20Sampling: Design, Biosecurity, Analyses

Exam 1 will cover material from 3 Feb – 9 Mar (completion time = 9 – 16 Mar);

Exam 2 will cover material from 16 Mar – 20 April (completion time = 20 – 27 April).


Required Text: Ranaviruses: Lethal pathogens of ectothermic vertebrates (Springer eBook:

Journal Articles:      Occasionally journal articles will be assigned instead of or to supplement the required text, and will be provided on the course website.

Academic Assessment:      Two take-home exams (one week completion time) over lecture material and required readings.

Language:      This course will be instructed in English, including the exams.