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IIT Guwahati transfers key tech for 1st recombinant vax for swine fever virus

Guwahati, March 26 (IANS) Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati on Tuesday announced the transfer of key technology for the commercial rollout of India's first recombinant vaccine for swine fever virus in pigs and wild boars.

Swine fever is a highly contagious disease among pigs and poses a severe threat with a very high mortality rate. It, however, does not affect humans.

In India, the disease has been frequently observed, particularly in the northeastern states, as well as in Bihar, Kerala, Punjab, Haryana, and Gujarat, among others.

The institute in a statement said that the pioneering vaccine technology has been "successfully transferred to BioMed" -- a manufacturing company specialising in high-quality vaccines.

"This technology entails a recombinant vector vaccine designed specifically for combating the classical swine fever virus in pigs and wild boars, filling a significant gap in India's vaccine landscape. This first recombinant virus-based vaccine for pigs harnesses a reverse genetic platform pioneered and refined at IIT Guwahati," the statement said.

Reverse genetics is a potent method widely used to develop vaccines against influenza. It can also be used for developing vaccines for animal diseases.

A team of researchers from the Department of Biosciences and Bioengineering at IIT Guwahati, and Assam Agricultural University in Guwahati jointly started the work on the vaccine in 2018-2019. Their research findings have been published in two journals: Process Biochemistry and Archives of Virology.

"Currently, the vaccine is under the process of filing a test and analysis licence," IIT Guwahati said.

--IANS

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