USDA approves combination MLV vaccine for protection against BVD

GREENFIELD, Ind. — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has issued the Veterinary Biological License for Viralign 6®, the first combination modified-live virus (MLV) vaccine to provide targeted protection against bovine viral diarrhea (BVD) virus 1b — the most predominant BVD virus strain in the United States.

1 Marketed by Elanco, Viralign 6 also provides protection against BVD viral strains 1a and 2, bovine respiratory syncytial virus (BRSV), infectious bovine rhinotracheitis (IBR) virus and parainfluenza3 (PI3) virus.

“Until now, veterinarians and producers have relied on combination vaccines with BVD 1a and 2 to cross protect against what is now the most predominant strain: 1b,” says Carl Guthrie, D.V.M. and director of Elanco beef technical services. “We are pleased that Elanco’s debut cattle vaccine is the very first USDA-approved MLV vaccine to include antigens for all three major BVD viruses, including 1b.”

This first-of-its-kind vaccine enables low-volume, subcutaneous administration in cattle 5 months of age or older. The BVD virus is an RNA virus, which means it is more susceptible to mutation. That’s why researchers monitor BVD viral strains to identify changes in predominance.

In fact, a USDA Agriculture Research Service analysis of diagnostic samples shows there has been a shift in predominance of BVD viral strains in the United States. In 1988, subtype 1a was predominant at 51 percent.

Twenty years later, 1a ranked third at 18 percent, while subtype 1b had increased in predominance from 41 percent to 61 percent.1 At the same time 1a was decreasing, the overall incidence of BVD virus did not decline.1 The USDA has reviewed studies documenting no adverse effects attributable to Viralign 6.

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