A Poultry CRC project focussed on the registration of a new live vaccine for Fowl Cholera in chickens is close to completion after six and a half years’ work through the CRC.
Project Leader and veterinarian, Dr Peter Scott, who is Coordinator of Applied Research at The University of Melbourne’s Veterinary School, said the vaccine is in the final registration process for chickens.
The majority of the review has been completed by the APVMA (Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority), and Bioproperties (the vaccine company) expects to hear back with questions in the next month,” he said. “An update on field trial information will be provided along with answers to any reviewer’s questions.”
Caused by Pasteurella multocida, Fowl Cholera is a disease that afflicts commercial poultry, including turkeys and ducks, resulting in significant production losses. The new vaccine, Vaxsafe PM, has undergone testing as a candidate vaccine at The University of Melbourne.
“Vaxsafe PM has major additional benefits over traditional killed vaccines currently used in Australia and is safer than the currently available live vaccines available in other countries,” explained Peter.
“Killed autogenous vaccines are only effective against homologous (same type) strains, whereas live vaccines give a level of heterologous protection against a wide range of strains. As there are many serovars of Pasteurella multocida it is very difficult for a poultry operation to apply the correct killed autogenous vaccine to prevent the next infection which may possibly be caused by a different strain to the one that infected a previous flock. Vaxsafe PM live vaccine (strain PMP-1) has a gene deletion (aroA) which limits its ability to grow in the vaccinated host (chicken). This makes it much safer than traditionally attenuated live vaccine strains.”
Turkey studies are also in the final stages. Duck studies have commenced and will continue over the next few months. Registration in turkeys and ducks will be by a variation on the chicken registration.