ASF may see a vaccine in 5 years, announce Australian researcher
Australian researchers involved in developing a vaccine for the African Swine Fever virus think that it will take at least 5 years until a solution will be ready to put in the market. The virus is now close to Australian borders being reported and confirmed in East Timor. At the Australian Animal Health Laboratory in the state of Victoria, a team of researchers tries to develop a vaccine but it will take time until a cure will be presented. "I do not think I expected African swine fever to spread with such ferocity. I think we will not be able to control African swine fever until there is a vaccine available,", said Dr. Trevor Drew, the laboratory director, in a statement for VOA News.
Until now, the virus has wiped out 25% of the world's pig population and threatens to enter Australia, where the feral pig population is estimated at 25 million head, covering almost half of the country. Also, the country has a large pork industry, which includes about 2,700 producers.
New bio-security laws have been adopted to respond to the threat of contamination through illegal pork products introduced in the country by tourists. Scientists believe that is the most likely way ASF could enter Australia and the new law allows the deportation of tourists who fail to declare illegal pork products. Search for an ASF vaccine is underway in the EU, US, UK, China and some other Asian countries.
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