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Thursday, December 29, 2016

A new vaccine for E.coli in cattle.

A brand new vaccine which is effective at controlling e.coli 0157 – the cattle disease which can prove fatal in humans – has been developed by a team of Scottish scientists. E.coli 0157 is endemic in around 20% of Scottish cattle herds at any one time but does not appear to have any impact on health or productivity of animals. However people who are infected through direct contact with cattle faeces or indirect contact with contaminated water, food or the environment, can suffer severe diarrhoea and in some cases fatal renal failure as a result of toxins the bacteria produce. After a decade of collaboration, staff at the Moredun Institute, the Roslin Institute and Scotland’s Rural College have developed the vaccine which is capable of controlling e.coli 0157 in cattle under experimental conditions. It remains to be seen how it will perform in the field where various strains of the disease may be present. The Moredun is now looking for commercial partners to exploit the vaccine but lead scientist, Tom McNeilly, acknowledges there will be debate over who should be responsible for paying for it.continue