A researcher with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine says a new live attenuated vaccine to protect pigs from Streptococcus zooepidemicus could be made available within months.
Streptococcus zooepidemicus, or Strep zoo, is a bacterial infection that can cause death within hours and lead to extremely high mortality rates.Researchers with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine and the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization have developed a live attenuated vaccine to protect pigs from this infection.
Dr. Matheus Costa, an Assistant Professor with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine and an Adjunct Professor at Utrecht University, says in the absence of a commercial vaccine prevention has relied heavily on biosecurity.
Quote-Dr. Matheus Costa-Western College of Veterinary Medicine:
We're exploring a vaccine candidate now that we have shown in laboratory conditions that it really protects pigs.It apparently has 100 percent efficacy.
No pigs died following challenges.No pigs developed severe clinical signs.This vaccine is what we call an attenuated live vaccine.
What we did is we got wild types, so the very virulent stain, and changed some genes in that virulent strain to make it less virulent so it won't cause disease but the pig is still able to recognise the bacteria and produce antibodies against it to prevent infection.
Because it's live it interacts very well with the immune system because it's a bacteria.It's a live agent so it's a very good way of inducing protection without inducing disease.
Usually, when compared to killed vaccines, they tend to illicit a stronger immune response and it tends to last for a longer period of time than killed vaccines and this is why we believe that this live vaccine strategy was very successful in protecting pigs and preventing death and clinical signs.
Dr. Costa says researchers are working with CFIA in an effort to get this vaccine approved under some type of emergency licensure that will allow it to be brought to barns that need a vaccine.He says this could hopefully happen within months.Source : Farmscape.ca