RABORAL V-RG®: Oral Rabies Vaccine For Wildlife
WHAT IS IT?
RABORAL V-RG® is a recombinant vaccine that has been approved for the oral immunization of raccoons and coyotes against rabies. The recombinant vaccine is encased inside a plastic packet. The packets, also called sachets, are encased inside solid fishmeal baits or the sachets are simply covered in a fishmeal-based coating. These bait units, each containing a single dose of RABORAL V-RG, are distributed into wildlife habitat, where they are sought out and eaten by raccoons and coyotes.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
RABORAL V-RG® immunizes the raccoon or coyote as the sachet is consumed during the eating process. The vector-vaccine virus infects the oral tissues and produces an immune response against rabies. The vaccine is produced using a Vaccinia virus that has been attenuated and contains only a small portion of the genetic material of the rabies pathogen, not the complete rabies virus. Therefore, it is impossible for this recombinant vaccine to produce the disease it was designed to prevent. RABORAL V-RG® vaccine will not cause rabies. After eating the vaccine, it only takes 10-14 days for a raccoon or coyote to become protected against rabies.
HOW IS IT USED?
Each year in the United States approximately 12 million doses of RABORAL V-RG® are distributed into wildlife habitats. The vaccine is distributed by airplane, helicopter or by hand to reach the target species. The location and number of baits used depends on the goals of the rabies control efforts. Radio messages, TV announcements and posters are used in communities to alert citizens of upcoming baiting programs. Baits have a toll-free number printed on their surface. When that number is called, the call will be immediately routed to local rabies control program offices.