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LOUISIANA STATE RESEARCHER DEVELOPS MORE EFFECTIVE BRD VACCINE FOR CATTLE
Feedstuffs magazine reports:

A Louisiana State University researcher has developed a new vaccine against bovine respiratory disease (BRD) and related illnesses that kill around 8 million calves each year and cost the U.S. cattle industry more than $1 billion.

Most cattle producers now use a commercially available modified live BRD vaccine containing several live viruses (a cocktail) to protect their herds. Still, the diseases kill more than one out of every five calves.

"Our vaccine is safer for calves and far more effective than the vaccine cocktail," said Dr. Shafiqul Chowdhury, a professor of veterinary medicine.

Chowdhury took bovine herpes virus type 1 (BHV-1) and genetically modified it to provide the protective proteins of other bovine respiratory viruses -- bovine viral diarrhea virus type 1 & 2 (BVDV 1more & 2), and bovine respiratory syncytial virus (BRSV) -- to prevent bovine respiratory disease.

LSU Vice President of Research & Economic Development Robert Twilley said research that leads to new tools like Dr. Chowdhury's vaccine is one of the pillars of LSU's Scholarship First Agenda, which advances agriculture, biomedicine, coastal protection, defense, and energy.

Chowdhury said the calf mortality rate in vaccinated animals is just one area where the current vaccine cocktail falls short.

The U.S. does not require marker or DIVA (Differentiating Infected from Vaccinated Animals) vaccines, which can be distinguished from the virulent field viruses. The current vaccine cocktail is not a DIVA/marker vaccine. Vaccine viruses can therefore circulate and be maintained in the cattle population. They may change over time and regain the ability to cause disease.

To read the entire report click here.


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