A new East Coast Fever vaccine diluent improvement project will be undertaken by GALVmed in partnership with the Malawi-based Centre for Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases (CTTBD) and the British-based biotechnology company, Arecor. This three-way partnership will begin the project in the first quarter of 2016.
This project represents a unique opportunity to translate British technology and expertise from the human health sector into livestock disease control in the developing world context. The project focuses on East Coast Fever (ECF), a major constraint on small-holder cattle production in East, Central and Southern Africa. An effective vaccine, ECF-ITM, currently exists for the disease but it has a number of important drawbacks that affect its use in the field. This project will trial the use of novel formulations as a replacement for the ECF-ITM vaccine diluent.
Success in the project will deliver important ECF-ITM vaccine product enhancements, notably vaccine stability. This will afford far greater mobility and flexibility to ECF vaccinators resulting in many more cattle being able to be effectively immunised. Successful completion of this project will therefore be a notable development in the sustainable intensification of small-holder cattle production in the region.
This project was made possible through a £195,678 grant from Agri-Tech Catalyst, which has been set up by Innovate UK and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council. Innovate UK is the UK’s innovation agency. It works with people, companies and partner organisations to find and drive the science and technology innovations that will grow the UK economy. The UK Government’s Department for International Development is contributing £10 million to the Catalyst, to support the transfer of technology and new products to developing countries.