Enhanced control of CBPP through the development of an inactivated vaccine – proof of concept


Contagious bovine pleuropneumonia (CBPP) is among the most important livestock diseases within Africa and affects the livelihood and food supply of many livestock dependent people. CBPP caused by the bacterium Mycoplasma mycoides subsp. mycoides (Mmm) is present in many countries of sub Saharan Africa and the current control programmes rely on a live vaccine with poor efficacy, short duration of immunity and severe side effects. Over the last few decades Africa has experienced a resurgence of CBPP. A policy of strict movement control and test and slaughter is at this time not possible to implement in most regions because of mobile production systems tailored to highly variable rainfall patterns, fragmented veterinary services and lack of funds for compensation.


The aim of this project is to investigate the feasibility of using inactivated mycoplasma for the induction of protective responses against a challenge with CBPP. Therefore we will use a two-step approach. The project team will first establish a robust and reproducible challenge model. Afterwards they will immunize cattle with bacterins from a African Mmm outbreak strain followed by a challenge trial. The immunisations will be carried out using different adjuvants and routes of immunization to compare the rate of the protection achieved.

Project goal and purpose

A better vaccine to CBPP is the major stepping-stone for a successful eradication policy. Many attempts to improve the current live vaccine or to find protective antigens have failed. The main goal of this proposal is to deliver proof of concept for an inactivated vaccine.  

If successful, future research will be geared towards improving a practical delivery package and towards acquiring solid scientific data on protective immune responses and to generate knowledge, which can be applied to other mycoplasma infections in the veterinary field.

Expected outputs

  • Develop a uniform challenge model for CBPP
  • Confirm induction of protection by inactivated mycoplasma