Scientists at The Pirbright Institute have received money which will enable research into boosting vaccine yields by up to ten fold. The funding was awarded by the Livestock Vaccine Innovation Fund which is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), Global Affairs Canada (GAC), and Canada’s International Development Research Centre.
Global expert on foot-and-mouth disease and Director of The Pirbright Institute, Dr Bryan Charleston, has been selected to sit on the Research Excellence Framework 2021 sub panel to oversee Agriculture, Veterinary and Food Science.
For the first time, researchers led by Professor Munir Iqbal at The Pirbright Institute have been able to insert protective avian influenza virus genes into the duck enteritis virus (DEV) vaccine by using a method of CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing that allows higher rates of gene insertion. This makes the process more efficient and the resulting vaccine virus is able to protect ducks against both DEV and avian influenza.