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Business News/ News / India/  Anocovax: India launches its first COVID-19 vaccine for animals
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Anocovax: India launches its first COVID-19 vaccine for animals

The COVID-19 vaccine is safe for dogs, lions, leopards, mice and bunnies, according to the ICAR-National Research Centre on Equines in Haryana.

The COVID-19 vaccine Anocovax is safe for dogs, lions, leopards, mice and bunnies(PTI Photo/Ravi Choudhary)(PTI06_06_2022_000111B) (PTI)Premium
The COVID-19 vaccine Anocovax is safe for dogs, lions, leopards, mice and bunnies(PTI Photo/Ravi Choudhary)(PTI06_06_2022_000111B) (PTI)

On June 9, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar launched Anocovax, India's first homegrown COVID-19 vaccine for animals, produced by the ICAR-National Research Centre on Equines (NRCE) in Haryana. The vaccine uses Alhydrogel as an adjuvant and contains inactivated SARS-CoV-2 (Delta) antigen. It is also safe for dogs, lions, leopards, mice, and bunnies, according to the company.

Anocovax is a SARS-CoV-2 Delta (COVID-19) vaccine for animals that is inactivated. According to the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), the immunity elicited by Anocovax neutralises both the Delta and Omicron versions of SARS-CoV-2.

"It is due to the untiring contributions of scientists that the country stands self-reliant in developing its own vaccines more rather than importing. This is really a big achievement," Tomar said after the virtual launch of the COVID-19 vaccine and diagnostic kits for animals developed by the ICAR-NRC.

Besides Anocovac, Tomar launched the 'CAN-CoV-2 ELISA kit' -- a sensitive and specific nucleocapsid protein-based indirect ELISA kit -- for antibody detection against SARS-CoV-2 in canines.

"There are no laboratory animals required for the preparation of the antigens. The kit is made in India and a patent has been filed for the same. No other comparable kits for detection of antibodies in canines are available in the market," the ICAR said.

Surra ELISA kit, a suitable diagnostic assay for 'Trypanosoma evansi' infection in multiple animal species, was also launched.

Surra is a haemoprotozoan disease caused by Trypanosoma evansi that affects a variety of cattle species. The illness is found in all of India's agro-climatic regions. Surra is predicted to cost India 44,740 million in annual cattle productivity losses, according to the ICAR.

The minister also launched the Equine DNA parentage testing kit, which is a powerful genomic technology for parentage analysis among horses.

ICAR Director General Trilochan Mohapatra, Animal Husbandry and Dairying Secretary Atul Chaturvedi, and ICAR Deputy Director General (Animal Science) Bhupendra Nath Tripathi were also present.

ICAR is the country's premier agri-research institute that functions under the Union Agriculture Ministry.

COVID-19 and pets

COVID-19 can be transmitted from people to animals through intimate contact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). COVID-19 is unlikely to transmit from animals to humans. However, while infection with the virus that causes COVID-19 is exceedingly rare, it can cause serious sickness in pets.

(With PTI inputs)

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Published: 10 Jun 2022, 06:23 AM IST
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