E.coli Vaccine for Cows

Dr. Guy Loneragan
Dr. Guy Loneragan

Ground breaking research at West Texas A&M University found a new weapon against a deadly strand of E.coli.

It's in the form of a vaccine and it has just been approved by the USDA.

Researchers at WT tested the E.coli vaccine in a commercial feed lot. Results showed an 85 percent reduction in the number of cattle that shed E.coli O517. Those cows that did show traces of the strand shed 98 percent fewer cells than those that did not receive the vaccine.

"So not only did the vaccine decrease the number of cattle shedding, it decreased the amount they shed. So there's a two-fold benefit to this vaccine," said Dr. Guy Loneragan, who led the research at WT.

Loneragan says the vaccine does not eliminate the E.coli strand completely. It gives ranchers and producers another means to help fight the food borne disease.

The vaccine is now available for commercial use nationwide. The price of the vaccine has not been determined, but a similar vaccine in Canada runs about $7 U.S. per cow.