April 13, 2024

Uganda develops anti-tick vaccines to boost dairy and beef industry

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Scientists in Uganda have developed two anti-tick vaccines whose trials have been successful and are now awaiting final approval from regulatory authorities, an official said Thursday, March 28, 2024.

According to ScienceDirect, a database of research and scientific topics, Ugandan farmers lose more than 1.1 billion U.S. dollars in aggregated annual direct and indirect losses due to the rising spread of tick-borne animal challenges, with the most common and economically damaging tick-borne disease being the East Coast Fever.

Frank Mugabi, a senior communications officer at the state-run National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO), which regulates agricultural research, told this publication that the anti-tick vaccines were developed after years of research.

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Mugabi told our news reporters that “for more than a century, the control of ticks and tick-borne diseases depended on the use of chemical acaricides. However, the use of chemicals was detrimental to the environment.”.

“Now we believe our scientists have made a major breakthrough since the ticks have developed resistance to the acaricides,” he added.

Mugabi said several trials had been carried out in various parts of the country for both oral and injectable vaccines in the past 12 months.

“Where the trials were carried out, we found that there were no issues related to ticks. The beef and milk were also tested, and there were no traces of the vaccines, meaning they were safe for consumption,” the official said.

According to Mugabi, the vaccines were developed from a protein called subolesin that was extracted from native tick species.

In conclusion, he said a patent has already been obtained for the vaccines, which are waiting for the regulatory bodies to register and recommend them for use by farmers.

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written by @enock katamba

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Mr. katamba Enock: Professional designer with experience in web designing who started this activity in 2019 at Kyambogo University after graduation . Contact me on : (+256-758287080)

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