USDA discovers African swine fever vaccine

Researchers at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) believe they have found a vaccine against African swine fever. They found that deletion of a previously uncharacterized gene, I177L, produces complete attenuation of the virus in pigs. 

Those pigs that were inoculated intramuscularly with the virus without the I177L gene remained clinically normal during the 28-day observation period. Furthermore, all infected animals showed a very low level of viremia, obtaining a strong antibody response specific to the virus. 

According to the USDA researchers responsible for this study, pigs were protected when challenged with the virulent parental strain ASFV-G (African Swine Fever from Georgia). “ASFV-G-ΔI177L is one of the few experimental vaccine candidate virus strains reported to be capable of inducing protection against the ASFV Georgia isolate, and the first vaccine capable of inducing sterile immunity against the current ASFV strain responsible for recent outbreaks.” , explained the specialized portal Avicultura Industrial. 

The disease has caused serious damage to the international pig market, having decimated pig populations throughout Asia, mainly in China, which had to turn to other markets to meet its demand. Now, there are already records that the plague is invading and spreading little by little in Europe, which ends up triggering a kind of warning signal among scientists. 

So far there is no vaccine or medicine against the disease, the only solution to the problem has been the sacrifice of animals so that it does not spread. 

Source: agrolink

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