A vaccine to control goat pox disease among India’s significant goat population, which has high economic importance for rural livestock growers, was launched on Sunday.
‘Raksha Goat Pox’, of leading Indian Immunologicals Ltd (IIL), is a live attenuated vaccine I.P. (Uttarkashi strain) grown on vero cell culture.
The primary vaccination has to be done at 3 months of age and re-vaccination annually. The technology for the vaccine and its testing was obtained from Indian Council of Agriculture Research-Indian Veterinary Research Institute (ICAR- IVRI), Government of India and has been tested and certified by it for commercial release.
The IIL had earlier launched several other vaccines such as classical swine fever vaccine, PPR vaccine etc under tech transfer arrangement with the IVRI.
In his remarks at the launch, IIL Managing Director, Dr K. Anand Kumar said: “Indian Immunologicals is committed to introducing such products for the national interest and will abundantly help marginal livestock growers of their livelihood and protect their flock from various diseases.
Deputy Managing Director, Dr Priyabrata Pattnaik, and Vice President, Animal Health Trade, Sobhan Babu, were also present.
India has about 150 million goat population and this disease is endemic in many parts of Asia, Africa and Middle East. Highly contagious, goat pox spreads through aerosol, contact and also through vectors such as flies. Goats of all ages, breeds and sexes are affected but the disease is very severe in young, old, and lactating animals, and it results in death in many cases.
The prevalence rate varies according to agroclimatic zones and may be up to 48 per cent in certain parts, as per a study. The morbidity of goat pox may be up to 100 per cent and mortality up to 85 per cent, thus, causing huge losses to the small animal farmers or livestock growers.