A vaccine to prevent Newcastle disease has been developed by Dr. J John Kirubaharan, an associate professor of Madras Veterinary College's department of veterinary microbiology, The Times of India reported.

The vaccine incorporates a new strain — the TANUVA D58 — of the Newcastle virus originally obtained from an unvaccinated village chicken. The strain has been bought for Rs 1 million (US$20,500) by Globion for commercial production.

The vaccine will help reduce mortality and prevent the spread of conjunctivitis among caretakers who handle the infected birds. It is thermostable and can be stored at different refrigeration temperatures.

The Indian Council for Agricultural Disease offered funding to develop an oral pellet vaccine for Newcastle disease in 1999.