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Saturday Aug 13, 2022

The BIOVAC tale: Revolutionizing poultry vaccines in Nepal

Through BIOVAC, Newcastle vaccines are made accessible for farmers

2022 Mar 28, 7:41, Banepa, Nepal
BIOVAC Nala Office (Photo Credits: BIOVAC Website)

Vaccines have been around for as long as humans have flourished in the modern world, playing a pivotal role in healthcare, for humans and animals alike.

Backbone of the Nepalese economy, agriculture contributes to 28% of our national GDP among which poultry accounts for 4%. Unfortunately, unprecedented disease outbreaks in various animal populations tend to discourage farmers from investing in poultry ventures. In particular, the Newcastle disease in chickens with a mortality rate of 80% to 100% has been wreaking havoc throughout the chicken population in the country.
Taking sample from chicken (Photo Credits: BIOVAC Website)
Taking sample from chicken (Photo Credits: BIOVAC Website)

Although several Newcastle vaccines are available for purchase in Nepal, they lack thermostable foundations (efficacy decreases with higher temperature) and require cold chain storage (uninterrupted refrigeration) for use. This is particularly inconvenient for farmers in rural areas who live almost a day away from vet stores. To eliminate the problem of transport and storage, BIOVAC, a vaccine research, development and manufacturing company in Nepal has taken a unique approach to tackle farmers’ problems.

              We know vaccines are important, and it's going to be important for a long                               time, so why not build a capacity in places like Nepal  , says Dibesh Karmacharya, the CEO and chairman of BIOVAC in a podcast with Bioneer.

BIOVAC’s I-2 Newcastle vaccine (RaniGoldhunga) is a thermo stable vaccine which can be stored up to 30 days in room temperature, terminating the need for storage facilities. Unlike other vaccines which require multiple boosters, it is a single dose vaccine which covers the lifespan of a broiler chicken ranging from 45-60 days. BIOVAC recently obtained a production license for the vaccine and is working towards obtaining a marketing license. With an efficacy rate of around 87%-88%, Kavya Dhital, the Quality Control Officer at BIOVAC, remains optimistic about the promising results of this vaccine in its trial phase. With the vaccine’s single-dose thermostable properties, the team is certain it will make a positive impact on the poultry industry in Nepal.

ADA Biomeme (Photo Credits: BIOVAC Website)
ADA Biomeme (Photo Credits: BIOVAC Website)

This begs the question—can we expect human vaccine production in Nepal? Dibesh Karmacharya answers, “Maybe this is the time to do it, but it has to be in a partnership between public and private institutions from a bilateral or multilateral perspective”. However, no work has been done on that front yet. Requiring a budget of around 7 to 9 crore, a human vaccine facility may be possible in the next 10 years.

Type of Vaccine/ Doses

Pricings Method of Delivery

Tablet Vaccine (50 dose)

Rs. 250


Lyophilized Vaccine (1000 dose)

Rs. 550

Mixing in Drinking Water

Lyophilized Vaccine (250 dose)

Rs. 250

Mixing in Drinking Water


biovac Vaccine Chicken poultry newcastle disease production
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