Indian Immunologicals Limited and ICAR-CIFA Collaborate to Combat Fish Disease with Innovative Vaccine
Indian Immunologicals Limited (IIL) is forging a new path in the Indian aquaculture sector with the announcement of its partnership with the Central Institute of Freshwater Aquaculture (CIFA) to develop a vaccine for Hemorrhagic Septicemia in freshwater fish. This disease is a major economic burden on India’s fisheries sector, with up to 20% of aquatic animals lost annually due to infectious diseases. IIL’s strategic move into the aqua business with its earlier launch of products for pond management and gut health in fish and shrimp has been welcomed, and the new collaboration with ICAR-CIFA signals an even more promising future for the sector.
Hemorrhagic Septicemia is a lethal disease caused by the opportunistic pathogenic bacterium, Aeromonas hydrophila, affecting all of India’s cultured freshwater fish species. Currently, antibiotics and chemotherapeutants are used to control this disease, but bacterial pathogens are becoming resistant to these chemicals. The development of a vaccine against the disease presents a promising and safe alternative for disease control. Dr. K Anand Kumar, Managing Director of IIL, expressed confidence in the company’s ability to successfully commercialize the vaccine, given their extensive experience in developing vaccines for livestock.
This innovative partnership between IIL and ICAR-CIFA is significant for India’s aquaculture sector, which employs millions of people and contributes significantly to the country’s economy. With India being the world’s third-largest producer of fish, the need for sustainable and environmentally-friendly solutions for disease control has never been more urgent. The vaccine’s development not only mitigates losses from infectious diseases but also contributes to the global fight against antimicrobial resistance, aligning with the “One Health” initiative. The collaboration promises to have a positive impact on India’s aquaculture sector and sets a precedent for future innovation in the industry.