Roseland, N.J. -- Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health introduces the first vaccine against canine influenza virus (CIV). The vaccine was granted a conditional product license by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on May 27.
-- Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health introduces the first vaccine against canine influenza virus (CIV). The vaccine was granted a conditional product license by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on May 27 for use by veterinarians.
Christopher Pappas, Jr., DVM, director of Companion Animal Technical Services for Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, explains in a prepared statement, "We developed the vaccine in response to the growing problem of the disease. We are pleased that our expertise in respiratory disease and vaccines can help prevent costly outbreaks and keep dogs healthier."
Canine Influenza Vaccine, H3N8 has been shown to reduce the incidence and severity of lung lesions, as well as the duration of coughing and viral shedding, the company reports. The vaccine, made from inactivated virus, is intended as an aid in the control of disease associated with CIV infection, Type A, subtype H3N8. The new vaccine is administered by subcutaneous injection in two doses, two to four weeks apart, Intervet Schering/Plough explains. It may be given to dogs 6 weeks of age or older and can be given annually as a component of existing respiratory disease vaccine protocols to ensure more comprehensive protection, the company adds.
The vaccine was granted a conditional license by the USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, which, through its Center for Veterinary Biologics (CVB), evaluates data supporting product purity, product safety under normal conditions of use in field safety trials. The company must also demonstrate the vaccine has a reasonable expectation of efficacy for a conditional license.
During the conditional license period, Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health will continue to submit data gathered from the field, which will be evaluated by government regulators to determine whether a full license may be issued.
"Canine influenza is a highly contagious respiratory infection that has a significant impact on dogs housed in shelters, kennels and communal facilities," explains Cynda Crawford, DVM, PhD, a clinical assistant professor of shelter medicine at the University of Florida. "The availability of a vaccine can help prevent the medical, financial and emotional costs associated with this new virus," Crawford says in press statement.
Canine influenza was first identified in the United States in 2004. Since CIV was identified in 2004, the virus has continued to spread and has now been detected in dogs in 30 states and the District of Columbia, according to both Crawford and Edward J. Dubovi, PhD, professor of virology at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine, two of the nation's leading experts on influenza H3N8.
Terri Wasmoen, PhD, an immunologist and senior director of Biological Research for Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, adds, "Preventing a viral infection that can make dogs susceptible to a complex of canine respiratory pathogens, commonly known as kennel cough syndrome, further strengthens the case for vaccination."