Merck Animal Health Receives USDA License for BOVILIS® CORONAVIRUS

First Modified-Live, Intranasal Vaccine Available for the Reduction of Enteric Disease Caused by Bovine Coronavirus
MADISON, N.J., October 3, 2016 – Merck Animal Health today announced the launch of BOVILIS CORONAVIRUS, the first USDA-approved modified-live intranasal vaccine to aid in reduction of enteric disease caused by Bovine Coronavirus (BCV). Most severe during winter months, BCV is often prevalent in dairy calves and cow/calf beef herds, and is frequently diagnosed as the leading pathogen in neonatal calves. This intranasal vaccine is approved for use in calves as young as 3 days of age.
BCV is commonly transferred by animals during periods of stress, including shipping, parturition, cold weather and commingling. Scours and winter dysentery are often the two signs that will signal the presence of BCV. A 2012 study at the University of Wisconsin Diagnostic Laboratory tested 147 herds and found nearly half (49.4 percent) of the herds to be positive for BCV.1 In related research at Oklahoma State University, 37 percent of BCV cases are found in calves zero to 30-days old.2
“Bovine coronavirus is far more prevalent than producers realize and, thus, the need to vaccinate is vitally important,” says Scott Nordstrom, D.V.M., Merck Animal Health. “When used as part of a complete vaccination protocol, BOVILIS CORONAVIRUS delivers protection against the enteric signs of bovine coronavirus and is a critical component in improving the overall health of cattle on an operation.”
In addition, the combination of vaccinating both dams and calves is critical to best management practices for scours protection. “Consistent vaccination of dams with GUARDIAN® and calves with BOVILIS CORONAVIRUS can greatly reduce the impact of BCV in the herd and helps ensure the maternal antibodies are passed through to the calves,” says Dr. Nordstrom.


Product research results showed the occurrence of scours in BOVILIS CORONAVIRUS-vaccinated calves was reduced by nearly one-half and average duration of clinical signs was reduced to 3.40 days; versus an average of nearly seven (6.82) days in the control group. In addition, the severity of the symptoms was significantly less in the vaccinated calves compared to the control group. Results of the safety trials demonstrated the vaccine is safe to use in calves as young as 1 day of age.3 BOVILIS CORONAVIRUS is available in 25-dose trays, 10-dose and 50-dose bottles. GUARDIAN is available in 10-dose and 50-dose bottles.

About Merck Animal Health

For 125 years, Merck has been a global health care leader working to help the world be well. Merck Animal Health, known as MSD Animal Health outside the United States and Canada, is the global animal health business unit of Merck. Through its commitment to the Science of Healthier Animals™, Merck Animal Health offers veterinarians, farmers, pet owners and governments one of the widest range of veterinary pharmaceuticals, vaccines and health management solutions and services. Merck Animal Health is dedicated to preserving and improving the health, well-being and performance of animals. It invests extensively in dynamic and comprehensive R&D resources and a modern, global supply chain. Merck Animal Health is present in more than 50 countries, while its products are available in some 150 markets. For more information, visit or connect with us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter at @MerckAH.

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  • 1. Sockett, Don, D.V.M. Bovine Coronavirus Prevalence. Rep. Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Research Report.
  • 2. Kapil, S. (2016). Role of Bovine Role of Bovine Coronavirus in Enteric and Respiratory Disease. Lecture.
  • 3. Data on file. Merck Animal Health.