EUROPE - An international meeting took place earlier this month as part of the project to develop a vaccine against a parasite that reduces productivity in ruminants.
Scientists from the Horizon 2020-funded project 'Paragone: Vaccines for Animal Parasites' gathered in Salamanca, Spain at the The Institute of Natural Resources and Agrobiology (IRNASA, CSIC).
The researchers are studying the parasite Fasciola hepatica, which causes the disease Fascioliasis, also known as liver fluke. It decreases meat and milk production in sheep and cattle, so the researchers are trying to develop an effective vaccine.
José Pérez is a researcher at the University of Córdoba who is working on the problem. "It is a parasite that is a serious problem in northern Spain, across Europe and in many parts of the world," he told DICYT.
Mr Pérez's research group performed tests of vaccines against Fasciola hepatica in sheep.
"We used three vaccines that have been produced by groups in the UK and Uruguay, tried them with different adjuvants and with one we have obtained a very promising result, but we have to design changes to improve it," he said.
The promising vaccine achieved a 40 per cent protection rate, which Mr Pérez said was "quite acceptable" for a parasite like this.
John Dalton, a researcher at Queen's University of Belfast, works on identifying vaccine candidates for other centres to study in animals. "The results are very promising," he said.
TheCattleSite News Desk