Coccidiosis Vaccine For Chickens

Eimeria infection impacts upon chicken welfare and economic productivity of the poultry sector. Live coccidiosis vaccines for chickens have been available for almost 70 years, but the requirement to formulate blends of oocysts from multiple Eimeria species makes vaccine production costly and logistically demanding.

A multivalent vaccine that does not require chickens for its production and can induce protection against multiple Eimeria species is highly desirable. However, despite the identification and testing of many vaccine candidate antigens, no recombinant coccidiosis vaccine has been developed commercially.

Currently, assessment of vaccine efficacy against Eimeria, and the disease coccidiosis, can be done only through in vivo vaccination and challenge experiments but the design of such studies has been highly variabl


Coccidiosis is a common disease of poultry caused by protozoan-type parasites (coccidia). These parasites live and multiply in the intestinal tract and cause tissue damage. The resulting damage interferes with food digestion and nutrient absorption. Dehydration and blood loss are possible as well. Also, the tissue damage can make the affected bird susceptible to infection by bacteria, such as Clostridia and Salmonella.

Birds infected with coccidia may shed oocysts in their feces for days or weeks. The oocysts transform into spores in the litter, soil, feed, or water. Susceptible birds in the same flock then ingest the sporulated oocysts and become infected. Infected feces or litter can contaminate boots, clothing, and equipment and can be spread to additional flocks. Coccidiosis is prevented through good sanitation and litter management. An important aspect of litter management is the elimination of wet litter, which is especially prevalent under waterers. Coccidia are resistant to harsh environmental conditions and common disinfectants. It is important to change the litter of highly infested flocks. Use of anticoccidial medications or vaccines is never a substitute for good management practices.

Features of Coccidiosis Vaccine For Chickens

Anticoccidial medications can be used in conventional poultry production (not organic poultry production) and commonly are added to poultry feed to prevent coccidiosis. Anticoccidial medications used in poultry feeds include the following examples:

  • amprolium (e.g., Amprol, Corid)
  • decoquinate (e.g., Deccox)
  • diclazuril (e.g., Clinacox)
  • halofuginone hydrobromide (e.g., Stenorol)
  • lasalocid (e.g., Avatec)
  • monensin (e.g., Coban)
  • narasin (e.g., Monteban)
  • nicarbazin (e.g., Nicarb 25%)
  • salinomycin (e.g., Bio-Cox, Sacox)semduramicin (e.g., Aviax)
  • sulfadimethoxine and ormetoprim 5:3 (e.g., Rofenaid)

Benefits of Coccidiosis Vaccine For Chickens

Coccidiosis vaccination is not infallible. Heavy infestations of coccidia can cause disease even in vaccinated chickens if the chickens’ immune systems are compromised, damaged, or suppressed by other infectious agents.

Coccidiosis vaccines include the following options:

  • Coccivac®-B—live oocysts of chicken isolates
  • Coccivac®T—live oocysts of turkey isolates
  • Paracox®-5—live attenuated vaccine for chickens

Prices of Coccidiosis Vaccine For Chickens


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