New antibiotic for bovine respiratory disease expected for this fall’s calf run


A new antibiotic is scheduled to be available in time for the fall calf run to protect and treat cattle for bovine respiratory disease (BRD), one of the most common illnesses affecting cattle.


Merck Animal Health officially launched Zuprevo July 29, following the drug’s approval for use in Canada. Zuprevo was approved for use in the United States in May.


A company news release said the drug is effective against the three most prevalent bacterial pathogens involved in the BRD complex. It is not approved for use in lactating animals and it has a 42-day withdrawal period.


Dr. Markus Rose, a veterinarian and senior development manager at Merck, said in a news release that Zuprevo has a unique combination of speed, duration and bactericidal activity.


The injectable antibiotic is effective in low doses — the lowest of any BRD treatment available, said the news release — at one millilitre per 100 pounds of body weight. Tests show it reached peak blood plasma concentrations within 45 minutes.


BRD is also known as bronchial pneumonia and shipping fever.


It is characterized in cattle by fever, depression, loss of appetite, nasal and eye discharge, mild diarrhea and rapid, shallow breathing.

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