New vaccine prevents lethal virus in pet parrots

Proventricular Dilatation Disease (PDD) is a lethal disease found mainly in the psittacine (parrot) family. But hope is on the horizon.

Researchers at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVM) have developed a highly effective vaccine against PDD, caused by Avian Bornavirus and which results in blindness, heart failure, or intestinal blockage.

The use of the vaccine against the Avian Bornavirus prevented the development of the disease in captive birds with no obvious adverse effects.

“Proventricular Dilatation Disease is an especially nasty infection that kills large numbers of captive birds each year,” said Ian Tizard, BVM&S, BSc, PhD, and project leader. “The new vaccine is expected to stop the development of this disease and prevent much suffering.”

The next step in the development of this vaccine will be to seek U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) licensure and then manufacture the vaccine commercially. That process will also require extensive field-testing to ensure safety and effectiveness in many species of pet birds.

Current plans are to market the vaccine through avian veterinarians; however, due to limited resources, CVM could not state when the vaccine would be available.

Photo credit: © iStock/Atthapol Saita


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