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Marek’s disease vaccination needed now more than ever

Kalen Cookson

Relaxing Marek's disease (MD) vaccination programs could badly backfire on producers reconsidering the value of protecting birds against the disease, according to Guillermo Zavala, DVM, PhD, president, Avian Health International. In an article written for Poultry Health Today, Zavala said MD rates are currently low because the industry has been vaccinating consistently for almost 50 years. Any interruption to that process would cause those figures to “progressively deteriorate.”



Monitoring field strains key to successful vaccination against IBDV

Daral Jackwood

More than 60 years of research and experience have made it clear that infectious bursal disease (IBD) in broilers is here to stay, and that unless it’s managed, considerable losses can occur, according to Daral Jackwood, PhD, professor at The Ohio State University. In an article written for Poultry Health Today, Jackwood said vaccines are the best tool we have to combat infectious bursal disease virus (IBDV), but too often success is only marginal unless we understand the evolving nature of this pathogen, monitor carefully for changes and adjust the vaccine protocol accordingly.



AL2 variants now account for more than half of IBDV field isolates in broilers


AL2 variants now account for more than half of the infectious bursal disease virus (IBDV) field isolates in broilers, according to the results of a 5-year survey that has important implications when planning vaccination programs. “The survey also demonstrated tremendous diversity among IBDV variants,” said Kalen Cookson, DVM, director of clinical research, Zoetis. “This finding underscores the need for routine bursal surveys to identify the types of IBDV circulating locally so that wise vaccine choices can be made.”




Robust challenge studies demonstrate efficacy of new recombinant vector vaccine for IBDVs

A new recombinant vector vaccine provides early protection against variant, classic and very virulent infectious bursal disease viruses (IBDVs), robust challenge studies demonstrate. “Poulvac® Procerta™ HVT-IBD provides an updated tool for protecting flocks against the strains of IBDV circulating among US broilers flocks, including the predominant AL2 variant,” Angela Hartman, PhD, Zoetis, told Poultry Health Today.



Sanderson vet: Keeping up with variant reovirus strains remains challenging

Poor uniformity, lameness and reduced water consumption are tip-offs that broilers may be infected with variant reovirus, according to Erin Riley, DVM, staff veterinarian at Sanderson Farms. The epidemiology for variant reovirus isn’t clear, Riley said, but it spread across the southern US very rapidly through transport of live poultry and hatching eggs.