An important koala vaccine will be deployed

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Vaccination lines have become commonplace throughout Australia, but the sight of hundreds of koalas lining up in life-saving jabs over the next few months is still expected to be annoying.

USC Leads Phase 3 Deployment of Koala Chlamydia vaccination It has been co-developed for many years with many partners, including the Australian Zoo Wildlife Hospital, where the vaccine is tried at around 400. Koala From today (October 15th).

USC professor of microbiology Peter Timms said vaccines could play an important role in the long-term survival of koalas, especially in southeastern Queensland and New South Wales, where chlamydia affects more than 50% of the koala population. I did.

“The vaccine has now passed Phase 1 and Phase 2 trials that have proven to be completely safe and provide a good immune response and a good level of protection,” he said.

“The vaccine has been evaluated in more than 200 koalas in eight small trials to date, both in captivity and in wild koalas. Wild animals Hospital and wild koala populations.

“We are now in an exciting phase of being ready to deploy the vaccine as part of a large phase 3 trial.”

Professor Tims will soon be planning other trials in several wild populations, including the Mogil Koala Rehabilitation Center, RSPCA Wildlife Hospital, and the Morton Bay region, as well as the first deployment trials at the Australian Zoo Wildlife Hospital. Said that.

He said hundreds of koalas admitted to the Australian Zoo Wildlife Hospital would be vaccinated with a single injection just before they were returned to the wild after receiving regular hospital care.

“While this vaccination benefits each animal directly, the trial will also focus on the protection provided by vaccination,” he said. “All koalas are processed with microchips and the hospital records animals that have returned for some reason over the next 12 months.

Dr. Amber Gillet, a wildlife veterinarian and research coordinator at the Australian Zoo Wildlife Hospital, said that chlamydia is one of the most serious threats to koala populations and is the most common reason for koalas to be admitted to the Australian Zoo Wildlife Hospital. Said that.

“It’s a cruel disease that causes debilitating conjunctivitis, bladder infections, and sometimes infertility,” said Dr. Gillette, who has been involved in the vaccine project from the beginning.

“Many koalas infected with chlamydia can be treated with conventional antibiotics, but some animals cannot be saved due to the severity of the infection.

“Having a vaccine that helps prevent both infection and disease severity is an important factor in species conservation.”

In addition to the involvement of the Australian Zoo Wildlife Hospital, communities and koala care groups are invited to help monitor koalas being returned to the wild in their area.

Professor Tims said vaccines are advancing through government registration with the Australian Department of Agricultural Medicine and Veterinary Medicine in parallel with deployment trials. He explained that this process is detailed, highly regulated, long and costly.

“The USC-based vaccine team is already well underway at this stage, including pre-application by APVMA, conversion of research vaccines to highly quality-controlled versions, and partnerships with vaccine manufacturers.” He said.

“We are also currently focusing on raising funds to support this important stage.”

Treating koalas with chlamydia changes gut microbiota

Provided by the University of the Sunshine Coast

Quote: An important vaccine for koalas to be rolled out (15 October 2021) from https: // 15 October 2021 Obtained on the day.

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An important koala vaccine will be deployed

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