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The ICAR-Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Izatnagar conducted North Eastern State Animal Husbandry Directors Interface Meet-2023 at Extension Education Institute (N-E region), Khanapara, Guwahati, Assam on 7th February, 2024 in collaboration with its Eastern Regional Station, Kolkata. The interface meet, attended by the Directors and senior officials of the North Eastern State Animal Husbandry Department, was chaired by Dr Triveni Dutt, Honorable Director– cum-Vice Chancellor, ICAR,- IVRI, Izatnagar. Dr Probodh
Borah, Director (Research), AAU, Khanapara graced the occasion as Chief Guest of the function. During the programme, Dr Rupasi Tiwari, Joint Director (EE), ICARIVRI, Izatnagar and Dr Arnab Sen, HoRC, ERS, ICAR-IVRI, Kolkata chaired two technical sessions.
Apart from the Joint Directors and Heads of the Divisions of ICAR-IVRI, faculty and students from the main and regional campuses of ICAR-IVRI also joined the programme in hybrid mode. The objective of the meeting was to the bridge the gap between ICAR-IVRI and
North-Eastern states, discuss need based researchable issues pertaining to animal health and production, and also to facilitate faster development & dissemination of technologies from lab to end user.

Addressing the house, the Director, ICAR-IVRI appraised about the notable contribution of IVRI in the development of vaccines and diagnostics, particularly PPR and FMD vaccines, and also the role played by the institute in jointly developing the LSD vaccine (Lumpy ProVac) with NRC Equine, Hisar within shortest time to counter the severe outbreak of LSD in country. The Director, ICARIVRI also highlighted regarding the newly developed gene marker FMD vaccine, and thermostable FMD vaccine that are shortly to be rolled out for use to boost the animal health and production. Dr. Rupasi Tiwari, Joint Director (EE), ICAR-IVRI, Izatnagar presented the bird’s eye view of activities of IVRI and descriptive analysis of responses, based on inputs provided by participants for assistance required on collaborative projects, training /capacity building of vets, linkages for production of veterinary biological, during registration. The JD (EE) also accentuated the need for wider adoption of the technologies to improve the productivity of animals in NE region. Dr Prabodh Borah, Director (Research), AAU, Khanapara and Guest of the function also spoke on the occasion. Dr Borah was of the opinion that the licensing fee for technologies to State Govt Entities may be reduced as per requirement. He also emphasized the need of collaboration between AAUIVRI with respect to mentorship, distance learning and skill based courses, sponsorship with regard to UG professionals from State Govt Officials intending to undertake PG and Ph. D programmes.

The inaugural session was followed by two technical sessions. In the technical session, “Production & Quality control of Veterinary Vaccines” was presented by DrPronob Dhar, Head, Division of Biological Standardization, ICAR-IVRI, Izatnagar. During the presentation, Dr Dhar elaborately discussed on analysis of manufacturing and testing protocol of imported vaccines and guidelines to be followed. There was also discussion on use of exotic ASF vaccine from Vietnam. It was pointed out that there is no experimental data available as yet on use of the same. Compartmentalization followed by biosafety and biosecurity measures remain the only viable option in the present context. This was followed by a presentation by Dr. Anuj Chauhan, I/C ITMU on the details of IP portfolio of the IVRI to make aware of the latest advances and technologies developed by the State Vety Officials for improving livestock health and production, including the newly developed vaccines such as Lumpi-Pro-Vac, IBD vaccine, duck plague vaccine etc., and diagnostics such as blocking ELISA for FMD, competitive ELISA for PPR, Blue tongue sandwich ELISA, JE IgG & IgM ELISA, Multiplex PCR for MTBC, etc. The status of Veterinary Biologicals in North Eastern States was presented by Dr N N Barman, Head, Microbiology Division, AAU, Khanapara, Assam whereas Dr Babloo Kumar, PS, Biological Products Division, ICAR-IVRI, apprised the house regarding various modules of Entrepreneurship Development Programme on animal health and production.

A panel discussion and interaction was held between senior officials of the state departments and the scientists from ICAR-IVRI. During the interactive session, the Directors of North-Eastern States discussed problems related to animal husbandry practice, disease diagnosis, and the need of Entrepreneurship Development Programme for various stakeholders, and capacity building of veterinarians in their states. Further, they were of the opinion that various need-based researchable issues, including development of indigenous vaccines for new and emerging livestock diseases, ready to use kit for disease diagnosis/pregnancy diagnosis, issues on African Swine Fever-Diagnosis should be taken up by IVRI. There was also demand for conservation of Indigenous breed, revival of bacterial vaccines-Anthrax, HS, BQ at Assam Biological production unit, and testing and validation of prototypes for vaccines and diagnostics at IVRI.

Earlier, Dr. Arnab Sen, Head of the Regional Centre (HoRC), ERS, ICAR-IVRI, Kolkata formally welcomed all the dignitaries and guests. The meeting ended with vote of thanks by Dr. P. S. Banerjee, PS, ERS, ICAR-IVRI, Kolkata. The entire programme was compered and coordinated by Dr Bablu Kumar, PS, Biological Products, ICAR-IVRI. The Interface Meet highlighted the commitment of ICAR-IVRI in strengthening collaboration between state departments in the field of veterinary science for the advancement of the livestock sector and the welfare of farmers in northeastern states. It was decided that follow-up meeting will soon be organized to determine the future course of action on mutually agreeable areas of research.

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