Rabies Vaccine

Rabies vaccine is a vaccine used to control rabies. Rabies can be prevented by vaccination, both in humans and other animals.
In 1984 researchers at the Wistar Institute developed a recombinant vaccine called V-RG by inserting the glycoprotein gene from rabies into a vaccinia virus. The V-RG vaccine has since been commercialised by Merial under the trademark Raboral. It is harmless to humans and has been shown to be safe for various species of animals that might accidentally encounter it in the wild, including birds (gulls, hawks, and owls).




V-RG has been successfully used in the field in Belgium, France, Germany and the United States to prevent outbreaks of rabies in wildlife. The vaccine is stable under relatively high temperatures and can be delivered orally, making mass vaccination of wildlife possible by putting it in baits. The plan for immunization of normal populations involves dropping bait containing food wrapped around a small dose of the live virus. The bait would be dropped by helicopter concentrating on areas that have not been infected yet. Just such a strategy of oral immunization of foxes in Europe has already achieved substantial reductions in the incidence of human rabies. In November 2008, Germany had been free of new cases for two years and is therefore currently believed as being rabies-free, together with few other countries (see below). A strategy of vaccinating “neighborhood dogs” in Jaipur, India, (combined with a sterilization program) has also resulted in a large reduction in the number of human cases.

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