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Recommendations for FMD from the Draft EU Policy paper vaccine AND/OR DIAGNOSTIC BANKS for major animal diseases: strategic planning options FOR EMERGENCY situations or major crises

Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD)

  • There is a continuing need for an EU FMD vaccine bank, containing stored antigens in sufficient quantity to provide up to 5 million doses per strain, depending upon the level of risk.

  • The selection of vaccine strains to be represented should be based on risk assessment informed by up-to-date knowledge of the global distribution of FMDV serotypes and strains and of the likelihood of their spreading to the EU.

  • Industry could be contracted to prepare vaccine seed-stocks to cover strains of lower perceived risk, but regulatory procedures add considerably to the time needed before such seed-stocks could be turned into final product.

  • Efforts should be made to harmonise procedures and reach agreement on sharing of vaccine antigens or formulated vaccines between vaccine banks of Member States, including the EU Bank. This could give access to greater quantities of vaccine, for more diverse strains.

  • The Commission should continue to support research efforts intended to produce more potent and more thermostable FMD vaccines with more rapid onset of protection, improved DIVA properties and broader strain coverage.

  • A bank of pen-side FMDV-detection systems should be established, providing rapid access to 500 lateral flow devices and 5 portable nucleic acid detection systems.

  • A commercial supply of DIVA serological test kits should be established, to enable at least 2.5 million animals to be tested at short notice.

  • There is a need to review the supply of serotype-specific serological test kits to see if diagnostic reagent banks are also warranted for these assays. This could be undertaken by Commission services with technical assistance from the European Union Reference Laboratory for FMD and the EU FMD Research Group.