Steps are in place to introduce the vaccine

Steps are in place to introduce the vaccine

This year, that attention has increased with the confirmation of lameness and nodular skin disease in Indonesia, including in the tourist destination of Bali.

The matter attracted national media coverage, put it in the political spotlight, and brought considerable attention to our biosecurity and preparedness system.

At Meat & Livestock Australia, we are working to inform the industry about this issue through a number of channels and partnerships, including a series of industry webinars over the past few months.

One of the frequent questions that has been asked in these webinars – and face to face with the MLA team – is about vaccinating our animals against FMD. It’s a great question and I’d like to outline the steps MLA and the industry are taking.

First, the industry has been preparing for the FMD risk for many years.

Australia has been free of the disease for over a century and scientific modeling shows it is highly likely that Australia will remain FMD-free.

In August, the University of Melbourne’s Center of Excellence for Biosecurity Risk Analysis modeled the current risk with an 11 percent probability of invasion, up slightly from nine percent, where the risk is static from 2021. This increase is mostly associated with the diagnosis. FMD in Indonesia.

Even with this low level of risk, however, many people ask: why don’t we vaccinate farm animals now?

The answer has two parts.

The first is that there is no reason to vaccinate animals in Australia unless there is an outbreak.

The second is that the use of vaccines poses a major risk to our export markets in terms of our country’s disease-free status.

Australia is officially recognized as a country that is free of foot-and-mouth disease without the use of vaccination, which is the most favorable status.

However, we have plans for rapid access to vaccination through a vaccine bank stored overseas.

If we need them, these vaccines can be delivered in bulk to Australia in seven to 10 days.

Even if an invasion occurs, it does not mean that vaccinating all farm animals is the best solution.

The decision to vaccinate animals in the event of an outbreak depends on several factors. These include the size of the outbreak, its location and the species that is affected.

There would also be other considerations such as the logistical requirements of a vaccination programme, the likely spread of disease and animal welfare considerations.

According to AUSTVETPLAN, the Animal Emergency Disease Advisory Committee decides what approach to take in the event of an outbreak.

CCEAD is a co-ordinating body providing a technical link between industry, the federal government and state and territory governments for decision-making during animal health emergencies.

Generally speaking, the response to an FMD outbreak will have multiple components including restriction of movement; disposal through destruction, disposal and decontamination; and where appropriate, the strategic use of vaccines.

It is likely that any outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in Australia would be quickly detected and controlled, and the use of vaccines to control the disease would not be necessary.

vaccine mRNA

We are also investing in cutting-edge science to increase industry readiness, having selected the LSD vaccine as the first topic for mRNA vaccine research. We are working with a number of research partners on this initiative.

The basic premise of an mRNA vaccine is that it uses a small piece of genetic material from a pathogen, mRNA, to generate a response.

Because of this, the vaccine is produced quickly and has no possible chance of causing the disease itself.

It is important to note that a new vaccine would have to go through regulatory approval.

In the future it may be possible to extend this to investments to do the same for FMD.

The use of these vaccines in the event of an outbreak would be considered part of a national strategic response overseen by the federal government through the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

By Jason Strong, MLA Executive Director

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