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Table V.

Properties of the two existing animal vaccines against Rift Valley fever virus.

Live-attenuated vaccine Inactivated vaccine
  • Derived from the Smithburn vaccine strain (origin = Uganda)

  • Attenuated by successive ICa passage in newborn mice and in embryonated eggs (resulting in a neurotropic strain); produced in cell culture since 1971

  • Derived from South African field strain

  • Inactivation with formaldehyde

  • Contains adjuvant

  • Needs only one injection

  • Long duration of protective immunity (entire economic life of animals)

  • Inexpensive production costs

  • No adverse effects

  • No contraindications

  • May induce abortions and fœtal malformations → major contraindications for use in pregnant animals

  • Transient viraemia

  • Possible residual human pathogenicity

  • Possible reassortment with field wild–type virus strains

  • Need two injections during the first year and booster doses annually

  • Short duration of protective immunity (necessitating annual booster doses)

  • Expensive production costs

Recommendations for vaccine use
  • Prefer live vaccine in countries/regions where the RVF is enzootic

  • Vaccinate before the reproductive season

  • Prefer inactivated vaccine in countries/regions newly infected or free but with a high risk of RVFV introduction

Common properties
  • Do not allow the differentiation of vaccinated and naturally-infected animals (i.e., no « DIVAb test » available)

  • Age of vaccination: > 6 month of age


IC = Intracranial.


DIVA test = “Differentiation of infected and vaccinated animals”.