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Possible Schmallenberg vaccine confirmed
VMD provides information on MSD application

After renewed calls from the farming industry the Veterinary Medicines Directive (VMD) has released information regarding a possible vaccine for Schmallenberg.

The directorate has taken the unusual step of sharing information regarding the MSD's application for its 'Bovilis SBV' vaccine. Usually the directorate is unable to comment on any applications it has received, or their current status, for reasons of commercial confidentiality. However in light of the media interest surrounding the possible vaccine, MSD has allowed the VMD to release certain information.

The VMD has confirmed it received an application for a provisional marketing authorisation at the end of August 2012. The application was then completed and validated in mid September 2012 following the provision of further data.

According to the directorate the initial assessment was completed, and further enquiries were sent to the company in question towards the end of November 2012. After receiving a response at the end of January 2013, the VMD are now assessing this information.

A VMD spokesman said: "Despite the good progress, at this stage it is not possible to provide an indication of when the vaccine may be authorised.

"The VMD recognises the impact on individual animals and farmers a disease such as Schmallenberg can have.

"The VMD will operate timelines for the remaining stages of consideration of the application mindful of this while ensuring, through our rigorous scientific assessment process, that proper care is taken to ensure that any vaccine is safe for the relevant livestock."

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Zoo calls for volunteers in its hour of need

News Story 1
 As ZSL London Zoo begins to get back on its feet, the organisation is putting out a call for volunteers who have time to help out. It comes after three months of unprecedented closure, which has seen zoos across the UK come under enormous financial pressure.

Volunteers will be required to commit to a minimum of half a day each fortnight, helping to assist zoo visitors as they make their way around. Volunteer manager Rhiannon Green said: "We need cheery, flexible people who can help visitors enjoy their day while respecting the measures that keep everyone safe.

For more information, visit Posts are available at both London and Whipsnade Zoos. 

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News Shorts
BSAVA webinars to shine the spotlight on selected journal papers

A free series of webinars that take a closer look at selected papers published in the Journal of Small Animal Practice has been produced by the BSAVA.

In the new BSAVA Science webinar series, authors of the featured papers discuss their results with a panel and how they may impact clinical practice. The authors then answer questions submitted by audience members.

The webinars are available via the BSAVA Webinar Library, covering four different papers. JSAP editor Nicola Di Girolamo, said: "Discussing the research with the authors - experts in their field - really helps to bring the papers to life."