Anticoccidial vaccine development: the importance of genetic diversity and delivery strategy

Lead Research Organisation: The Pirbright Institute
Department Name: UNLISTED

Abstract

Coccidiosis is a devastating disease of poultry and other livestock caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Eimeria. Cost-effective, multi-valent recombinant vaccines are a realistic prospect following the identification of immunoprotective parasite antigens and development of parasite transfection technologies. To predict the likely efficacy and longevity of such vaccines in the field it is important to know the prevalence of naturally-occurring genetic (antigenic) diversity, rate of multiple infections, and frequency of genetic exchange between parasites. It is crucial also to have strong geographical networks in place, both for collecting parasites for the laboratory studies outlined above and to ensure efficient dissemination, delivery and support of traditional and new therapeutics (drugs and vaccines) to the world's poorest rural economies.

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