This picture taken on December 9, 2020 shows specialists working on the development of a coronavirus vaccine for animals at a laboratory of the Federal centre for animal health. - LEHTIKUVA / AFP

International news

Russia has registered the world's first animal vaccine against Covid-19, said Konstantin Savenkov, the deputy head of the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance (Rosselkhoznadzor) on Wednesday.

"Carnivak-Cov, a sorbate inactivated vaccine against the coronavirus infection (COVID-19) for carnivorous animals, developed by Rosselkhoznadzor's Federal Center for Animal Health, has been registered in Russia.

So far, it is the world's first and only product for preventing COVID-19 in animals," he said, according to Tass news agency.
The outlet further reported that The mass production of the world's first animal vaccine against COVID-19 may be launched as early as in April, on the basis of the country's largest platform to produce veterinary products - the Federal Center for Animal Health, the official said.

According to Savenkov, clinical trials of Carnivak began last October and involved dogs, cats, foxes and Arctic foxes, minks and other animals.

Tass further reported that other countries have already shown interest in the anti-coronavirus vaccine for animals, developed by Russian scientists, Konstantin Savenkov has told reporters.

"As COVID-19 cases are registered in animals in many countries worldwide, purchases of the Federal Center for Animal Health's vaccine, are planned by domestic animal-breeding enterprises and commercial firms from Greece, Poland and Austria. Companies from the United States, Canada and Singapore have also demonstrated interest in Carnivak-Cov," he said.

As per the World Organization for Animal Health, certain animal species are susceptible to COVID-19. Cases of the disease have been registered in various animals all over the world. Every week, countries inform the World Organization for Animal Health about animal cases of COVID-19 on their territory. Last week, the organization received information about three such cases in Mexico and one in Brazil.

Tass further reported that mass outbreaks of COVID-19 were earlier registered at fur farms. On November 4, 2020, Denmark's government made a decision to exterminate 17 mln minks for fears they might infect humans with the mutated coronavirus.

According to Savenkov, two cases of the novel coronavirus infection in cats have been registered in Russia so far: in Moscow and Tyumen (West Siberia).

"According to Russian scientists, the use of the vaccine can prevent further mutations of the virus, which often occur during the inter-specific transmission of the pathogen. At the same time, it should be noted that so far, there has been no scientific evidence of the novel coronavirus transmission from animals to humans, as the World Health Organization has repeatedly stated," the Russian official said.

In his words, animals can also contract other coronaviruses, different from SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19.

Source: ANI