Andhra Pradesh

Vaccine for foot rot disease in goats likely by monsoon next

A goat suffering from foot rot disease.  

The much-awaited vaccine for the foot rot disease found in goats pan-India may become a reality by the monsoon of 2022.

Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University (SVVU) in Tirupati has made strides by developing India’s first-ever vaccine for the disease, and has transferred the technology to the Hyderabad-based Indian Immunologicals Limited (ILL), which is in the process of securing the mandatory licence from various agencies.

After the signing of an agreement in December last by university Registrar T. Madhava Rao and IIL Managing Director Anand Kumar, in the presence of Vice-Chancellor V. Padmanabha Reddy, the foot rot bacterial strains ‘A, B, and I’ were handed over to the company for taking up culturing in order to facilitate commercial production.

Three strains

As it will be the first-ever vaccine in India, the strains are being tested for viability. The strains ‘A’ and ‘B’ are pathogenic even outside India, but ‘I’ is found mostly in India, especially the southern region.

Foot rot is a contagious disease in goats and sheep, characterised by exudative inflammation followed by necrosis of the epidermal tissues, causing separation of the hoof from the underlying soft tissue.

The affected animals exhibit lameness, loss of body condition due to a fall in diet, causing reduced wool and meat production, apart from decreased fertility.

The disease is not just painful for the animals but also a nightmare for the cattle rearers, as it results in huge fall in returns on their investment.

Extensive research

Finding vaccination as the only way out, the university had taken up extensive research on the disease caused by ‘Dichelobacter nodosus’ bacteria about six years ago, and had come up with the protocol for developing the vaccine at the laboratory level.

“As the bacteria generally infests in muddy soil and spreads to the flock during the rainy season, the scientific community is keeping its fingers crossed over the vaccine’s commercial availability, expected by monsoon next,” university Director of Research V. Eswara Prasad told The Hindu.

In India, the disease is predominantly reported from Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, though its first confirmed outbreak was found in the Jammu & Kashmir.

The disease affects up to 2% of sheep population during the monsoon season, but the morbidity in the affected flock ranges between 10 and 20% due to severe lesions.

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Printable version | Jun 20, 2021 4:31:17 PM |

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