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New model to predict effectiveness of livestock vaccines
The study has implications for the design of vaccines and vaccination programmes in livestock.

Researchers use model to study effectiveness of PSSR vaccines 

A new model to predict the effectiveness of vaccines in livestock has been developed by scientists at The Roslin Institute.

Researchers found that, when applied appropriately, even imperfect vaccines can prevent, mitigate or eliminate the prevalence of disease.

Scientists say the study has implications for the design of vaccines and vaccination programmes in livestock. Professor Andrea Wilson from the Roslin Institute explains:

“Veterinary vaccines often only confer limited immunity and thus may not prevent infection. In this study, we developed a model that combines epidemiological consequences of different vaccination strategies and different vaccine properties applied to livestock. 

“The model is successful in predicting the effectiveness of vaccines in livestock.”

The overall aim of vaccination is to protect animals from disease and reduce the risk of disease outbreaks. The new model shows that combining diverse vaccine properties could have a multiplicative effect and may, therefore, be more effective. 

In the study, scientists used the model to study the effectiveness of vaccines to combat Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) virus.

Endemic in most pig-producing countries, PRRS causes breathing problems and can be fatal in young animals. However, vaccines to prevent the spread of the disease have mostly failed

Scientists believe the new model shows that the control or elimination of PSSR through vaccination may well be in reach, so long as the vaccine speeds up recovery and reduces virus replication.

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Celebrity chefs urge public to get baking to support Cats Protection fundraiser

News Story 1
 In support of Cats Protection's Pawsome Afternoon Tea fundraiser, Masterchef winner Tim Anderson and Great British Bake Off star Kim-Joy have shared biscuit recipes to help keen bakers raise money for needy cats across April.

The celebrity chefs are both cat owners and have said that they hope this fundraiser will help to raise awareness of cats in need and the importance of adopting a cat, rather than buying one.

This is the fourth year Cats Protection has run its Pawsome Afternoon Tea campaign, which encourages people to hold tea parties, bake sales and fundraising events to help raise money for the charity.

To view the recipes and other fundraising resources please visit the Cats Protection website. 

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BEVA offering free membership to vet students

The British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) is offering free membership to veterinary students. As part of a new initiative with the aim of encouraging more veterinary professionals into equine practice.

According to BEVA, less than one in ten veterinary students choose to work in equine practice. The association hopes that this initiative will provide insight into the field and the benefits of a career in equine medicine.

Benefits of membership include:
▪ access to a network of nearly 3,000 members
▪ special student rates to attend BEVA Congress
▪ online access to BEVA's Equine Veterinary Education (EVE) journal
▪ free access to the association's online learning platform
▪ free access to BEVA's practical veterinary apps
▪ exclusive discounts on a range of things from cinema tickets to grocery shopping.

BEVA will be releasing a series of short videos over the next few months from BEVA Council members, explaining what inspired them to work in equine practice.

Image (c) BEVA.