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Dow AgroSciences receives approval for plant-made vaccines


Indianapolis, Indiana – Dow AgroSciences, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Dow Chemical Company, says it has received regulatory approval for a plant-made vaccine from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Center for Veterinary Biologics. This approval represents an innovative milestone for the company and the industry.

“With this achievement Dow AgroSciences is revolutionizing the field of preventative medicine with plant-cell-produced vaccines,” says Butch Mercer, Dow AgroSciences’ global business leader for Animal Health.

The Dow AgroSciences plant-cell-produced system represents a new category of plant-made vaccines. This leading-edge technology utilizes plant cells instead of whole plants in a secure, bio-contained environment to produce vaccines. Because of this bio-contained production system, concerns and challenges associated with making vaccines in whole plants or food crops are eliminated.

The system uses only the necessary parts of the disease causing agent to stimulate immunity in a manufacturing process that is totally free of animal components. According to John Cuffe, Dow AgroSciences’ R&D leader for animal health, “This approval is a perfect example of how biotechnology is advancing science by creating a new category of vaccines that is both safe and effective.”

By achieving this regulatory milestone, Dow AgroSciences has demonstrated that this new technology fits within the existing USDA Center for Veterinary Biologics regulatory approval process. The company says it can now focus its efforts on developing new, innovative vaccines with an emphasis on animal health. Possible target animals include: horses, companion animals (such as dogs and cats), poultry, swine, and cattle.

The company says this achievement was the result of effective collaborations with prominent organizations and institutions including Washington University, Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research, Benchmark Biolabs, and the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University.