Media Coverage

KSU swine fever vaccine efficacy to be tested in China

Mar 05, 2018 - Animal Pharm
By Sian Lazell 
Animal Pharm
March 5, 2018

A Kansas State University (KSU) researcher has licensed a new vaccine against classical swine fever (CSF) to an unnamed animal health firm in China for a field efficacy study.

Jishu Shi, professor of vaccine immunology and director of the US-China Center for Animal Health at the university's College of Veterinary Medicine, developed a method of producing a CSF vaccine safely and inexpensively. KSU said a second discovery by Prof Shi could also improve vaccines for the disease and help protect the US from an outbreak.

The out-licensed vaccine uses a protein from the CSF virus rather than live or attenuated CSF virus. This means the vaccine does not present a biosecurity risk to producers – something especially important in the US, where CSF was eradicated in 1978.

China is an appropriate place to test the field efficacy of the one dose subunit vaccine, as CSF has not been eliminated there. Around 700 million pigs are raised annually in the country and each currently receives two doses of vaccine against the disease.  

Prof Shi said: "We need to test the vaccine in the field to prove it will work. If it does, we can help China eradicate the disease, which further secures the US by ensuring the disease doesn't spread to our shores."

Additionally, Prof Shi's second discovery will help develop a test to differentiate infected from vaccinated animals. Pigs given the current modified live virus CSF vaccine test positive for the disease. Prof Shi, in collaboration with other researchers, identified two specific antibodies that can be used to differentiate whether pigs are infected or vaccinated. At present, he is working with colleagues at the USDA, in Europe and in China to carry out trials and gain full validation.  

Prof Shi said: "This exciting discovery could result in solving an economic and trade problem in China – vaccines are expensive and countries with classical swine fever can't export pork – and a security problem for the US."

Reprinted with permission of Animal Pharm News




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