Sciences

Production of tissue culture vaccine soon

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ISLAMABAD: The federal government has decided to produce tissue culture vaccine (TCV) against rabies and give up the current simple sheep brain vaccine.

The decision was taken at a meeting of provincial health secretaries and director-generals, with Federal Health Secretary Syed Anwar Mahmood in the chair, on Tuesday. The meeting was informed that the TCV was more potent, efficacious and stable. Rabies, an almost invariably fatal viral disease, is transmitted to human beings through animal bites, dog being the most common animal. A research project is already in place and the Central Development Working Party (CDWP), in its last meeting, had asked the Ministry of Health to seek consensus from the provinces in this regard, the meeting was told. The provincial secretaries and DGs, representing the provincial health departments, supported the production of the high quality rabies vaccine. After the approval of the project, it would require 12 to 18 months to put the necessary infrastructure in place and start supply to the provinces.

The meeting discussed in detail the introduction of the tetravalent vaccine, which is used to provide protection against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough and hepatitis. After intensive discussions, it was decided that the programme would continue to use monovalent vaccine, as the tetravalent vaccine was expensive. staff report

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