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Zoetis reintroduces avian coryza vaccine

Vaccine was labeled for export use only, but Zoetis worked with USDA to resume U.S. distribution to aid disease outbreaks in poultry flocks.

Zoetis has reintroduced the vaccine Poulvac Coryza ABC IC3 to help U.S. poultry producers combat outbreaks of avian coryza, an acute respiratory infection, according to an announcement.

“Our avian coryza vaccine has a full U.S. Department of Agriculture license, but because of limited need, it had not been marketed in the United States in recent years, and the label was changed for export use only,” explained Rebecca Grieve, Zoetis manager of U.S. biologicals regulatory affairs.

“In light of the recent outbreaks in Pennsylvania and knowing the disease could spread to other areas, our regulatory group worked with the USDA to obtain approval to distribute the product in the United States with the current export label. That approval has been granted,” she said.

Poulvac Coryza ABC IC3 is indicated for the immunization of healthy chickens against clinical signs of infectious coryza (Avibacterium paragallinarum, previously known as Haemophilus paragallinarum) caused by serovars A, B and C, the company said.

Zoetis, which manufactures the vaccine at its modern production facility in Charles City, Iowa, has already begun shipping the vaccine to affected areas.

According to Penn State Extension, which has been monitoring outbreaks in the state, avian coryza is more common in mature birds, especially when they are stressed. Layers frequently become infected shortly after they’re moved to new cages or when they are near peak production.

All three serotypes of A. paragallinarum must be considered when immunizing the birds against this disease.

“Serovars A, B and C are not cross-protective, so vaccines need to contain the serovars present in the target population to be effective,” said John Brown, a senior technical services veterinarian at Zoetis who specializes in layers.

Because avian coryza is a respiratory disease, infected birds transmit the disease through sneezing and coughing. Infected birds usually show severe facial edema (swelling). More significantly, the infection often leads to reductions in feed intake and a 10-40% reduction in egg production in active layers, according to Penn State Extension.

A. paragallinarum is a Gram-negative pathogen susceptible to several antibiotics. Penn State Extension said flocks that are already infected may be treated with either feed or water medications -- usually tetracyclines -- under veterinary supervision.

The organism is easily destroyed by most disinfectants, dessication and direct exposure to sunlight. Infectious coryza does not present a risk to humans, nor does consumption of meat or eggs from infected birds present any risk to human health.

For more information, visit Zoetis’ U.S. Poultry website.

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