GFM Network News


The ability to produce new vaccines is improving by leaps and bounds, says Volker Gerdts, head of the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization at the University of Saskatchewan.

In the fast-evolving field of vaccines, Prairie lab is at the cutting edge

VIDO is known for its work in animal health, but it’s developing a COVID-19 vaccine and a production facility

Reading Time: 3 minutes At a time when the entire world has never been more focused on vaccine development, one of Canada’s leading researchers in the field had some positive words on the subject for delegates to the 2021 Banff Pork Seminar. In his presentation, Volker Gerdts pointed to the mRNA technology used to develop the first two COVID-19 […] Read more

Big brown bats are one of nine bat species in Alberta.

The interconnections between species are deep and interwoven

COVID-19 has put bats into the spotlight, and research shows how deeply everything is connected

Reading Time: 3 minutes In the last column I introduced the concept of systems change for the benefit of human and animal health. Fortunately, there is an avenue to work with human and animal doctors, scientists and experts towards a healthy world and it is called One Health. One Health is defined as a “collaborative, multi-sectoral and transdisciplinary approach […] Read more


When vaccines are manufactured, they are checked for efficacy to determine if the manufacturing process has been successful.

The vaccine supply is more fragile than you might think

Beef 911: Supplies can run short for many reasons, so you need to be prepared for that possibility

Reading Time: 3 minutes A lot of disease prevention and maintaining productivity relies on vaccination, and we often don’t realize how much we rely on these vaccines until there is a shortage. With there only being a few large pharmaceutical companies, there may be few alternatives to turn to. With regulatory control being very strict and changes slow to […] Read more

(PerformanceLivestockAnalytics.com)

Zoetis buys livestock data management firm

Performance Beef platform to expand drugmaker's 'precision' production offering

The producer of livestock drugs such as Draxxin, Bovatec and Excede is buying space in the “precision livestock farming” market with a deal for a U.S. livestock data management firm. New Jersey-based Zoetis, which makes drugs and vaccines for the beef and dairy cattle, equine, swine, poultry and sheep sectors as well as cats and […] Read more


(PrevtecMicrobia.com)

Elanco buys swine PWD vaccine maker

Veterinary drugmaker Elanco Animal Health is expanding its space in the swine sector with a deal to buy the Quebec startup behind Coliprotec vaccines. Indianapolis-based Elanco announced Thursday it has paid $78.5 million to buy Prevtec Microbia, which is headquartered in Montreal with facilities in St-Hyacinthe. The Coliprotec line is meant to help protect pigs […] Read more

The number of horses infected with West Nile jumps in Alberta

The number of horses infected with West Nile jumps in Alberta

The number of cases nationally more than doubled last year, with more than half in Alberta

Reading Time: 3 minutes West Nile virus is becoming a more serious issue in horses — rates are rising in Alberta and a third of the horses which become infected will die. But there is a way to protect your horses, said veterinarian Melissa Smith of West Wind Veterinary Hospital in Sherwood Park. “There are vaccines available for West […] Read more


Preconditioning is good for the entire cattle industry

Preconditioning is good for the entire cattle industry

Beef 911: There are a multitude of benefits but producers need to be compensated for the extra work and risk

Reading Time: 4 minutes Older producers may remember a preconditioning program implemented by the provincial Agriculture Department in the 1980s. There were criteria for procedures and shots, while veterinarians certified that procedures such as dehorning and castrating were done properly and correct pre-immunization shots were given properly. Two categories of calves (either pre-immunized or pre-immunized and weaned a specific […] Read more

You can still get good protection by vaccinating very young calves

You can still get good protection by vaccinating very young calves

Beef 911: The label may say it’s not approved for young calves, 
but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work


Reading Time: 4 minutes There has been a lot of trial work over the years regarding vaccinations of our calves and when would be the most ideal time. Immunologists would debate this but as situations on farms changed and herds got larger, trends changed. Producers no longer boostered vaccines at four to six weeks apart as was often recommended. […] Read more


Top tips for vaccinating

Top tips for vaccinating

Storage, the injection route, and when you administer a vaccine 
are all key, says 
Dr. Nathan Erickson

Reading Time: 2 minutes Time it right A vaccine needs to match the immune response of the cattle to the vaccine and the period of greatest risk. “So for BVD, the risk period is the first three months of gestation, while IBR, lepto, and vibrio, they tend to be a little bit later in gestation — around four months,” […] Read more

Lorne Babiuk is the first Canadian to be named a World Agriculture Prize Laureate.

U of A researcher first Canadian to win major international award

Lorne Babiuk, vice-president of research at University of Alberta, has helped develop six vaccines and made major contributions to animal health

Reading Time: 2 minutes He’s helped pioneer the development of vaccines used by livestock producers worldwide, and now he’s the first Canadian to be named a World Agriculture Prize Laureate. Lorne Babiuk, world-renowned virologist and vice-president of research at the University of Alberta, was awarded the prestigious prize in recognition of his lifetime achievement. “Vaccines, whether for producers or […] Read more