About this Research Topic
Vaccination is the main tool for FMD control. Depending on the epidemiological situation, some regions utilize regular vaccine campaigns as a routine preventive control strategy. Other regions, free from the disease and under the vaccination-to-live policy, consider FMD vaccines to be deployed only as an emergency intervention. Currently used vaccines are based on inactivated whole-viral particles formulated with adjuvants. These vaccines are effective and safe and provide protection shortly after their application though the duration of immunity is not prolonged, and boosters are needed to maintain protective antibody levels. The inactivated vaccine production entails the growth of large quantities of live virus in cell culture in high-containment facilities, which are expensive to maintain, and even banned in some FMD-free regions. Vaccines must be controlled for particle integrity, a requirement for effective immunogenicity, and for absence of non-structural proteins (NSPs). The availability of NSP-free vaccines enables the use of simple serological assays to identify infected or vaccinated animals (DIVA testing).). Apart from these control steps, efficacy trials using large numbers of animals, often in high containment facilities are needed to assess protection levels. Due to the cost, ethical considerations and lack of standardization of methods in species other than cattle, this represents another opportunity for the global research community: challenge trials must be changed for validated in vitro methods, avoiding infecting animals for vaccine control. FMDV variability poses additional constraints to global vaccine supply, as the strains selected for the vaccine formulation should antigenically match those circulating in the area where they will be applied.
As vaccination in combination with other control methods succeeds and the disease is controlled in different parts of the world, the next global scenario demand novel vaccines, which avoids the use of live virus while allowing DIVA testing. In this regard, the research global community has been working hard to provide the world with suitable novel vaccines that can be safer and easier to produce. These vaccines will also need of efficient and simple tools to assess vaccine immunogenicity in the different susceptible species, in vitro efficacy, and field surveillance.
This research topic focuses on studies (including e.g. original research, perspectives, mini reviews, commentaries and opinion papers) that investigate and discuss the different research gaps in FMD vaccine and vaccination; including vaccine production, novel vaccines, vaccine strain selection, immune responses to vaccines in different species, vaccine quality control, DIVA testing, novel methods for assessing vaccine efficacy, vaccination campaigns, including their design and follow-up, risk-assessments for vaccine use, among other issues. Papers intended to evaluate the epidemiological situation of the disease in countries that use or have used vaccine for disease control are also welcome.
This Research Topic is hosted by The Global Foot and Mouth Disease Research Alliance (GFRA), a worldwide scientific network focused on FMD that analyze the research gaps and holds scientific meetings every two years, to share the last advances on research and promote networking. Papers derived from abstracts presented at the GFRA 2021 meeting are welcome. We expect that the articles published in this Research Topic will enhance our ability to control and prevent FMD with vaccination, ultimately contributing to the sustainability of the livestock industry worldwide.
Keywords: Foot-and-mouth disease, cloven-hoof species, Picornaviridae, vaccination
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.