Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health reported today that its Nobivac Lepto4 is the first and only four-way canine leptospirosis vaccine to be approved for protecting dogs against mortality.
The vaccine is indicated to protect dogs from L. canicola, L. icterohaemorrhagiae, L. pomona and L. grippotyphosa.
“We subjected the vaccine to rigorous testing with the ultimate goal of providing the broadest possible protection of dogs’ lives and health,” said Steve Shell, companion animal business unit head of Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health.
Acute kidney failure occurs in 80 percent to 90 percent of dogs with significant clinical disease from leptospirosis. The mortality rate of these dogs is about 20 percent, according to the company.
Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health noted that Nobivac Lepto4 was also shown to prevent clinical disease including thrombocytopenia, preserve kidney and liver function and reduce leptospiremia.
The vaccine was well tolerated in efficacy studies and proven safe in these and additional field studies involving dogs of various breeds and ages, according to the company. In clinical studies, no dogs vaccinated with the vaccine died or became severely ill as opposed to more than half the dogs in the control group, the company noted.
Leptospirosis is most common in the Northwest, upper Midwest, Northeast and South-Central U.S. Incidence rises during late summer and fall and during periods of warm, wet weather, especially with heavy rain and flooding.
“As suburbia has expanded into the country, people and pets are more exposed to wildlife, including raccoons, opossums and other animals who may be carriers of leptospirosis,” said Rhonda Lafleur, Ph.D., a group leader in biological research at Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health. “With the wet weather and flooding we’ve experienced in many areas of the U.S., we’re finding that nearly every dog that goes outside is vulnerable to the disease.”
The first dose of Nobivac Lepto4 may be administered to dogs 8 weeks of age or older, with a repeat dose 2 to 4 weeks after the initial dose, according to the company. Annual revaccination is recommended.
The vaccine is available as a standalone or as a combination vaccine, Nobivac Canine 1-DAPPv+L4, which is also indicated to protect against canine distemper, adenovirus, parainfluenza and parvovirus.
Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health is a subsidiary of Merck & Co. Inc. of Whitehouse Station, N.J.