IMPORTANT: If you reside in a country where health product communications are restricted to health care professionals, and you are NOT a health care professional, please contact your veterinarian instead of reading the following information.

​​The Technology Behind VAXXITEK® HVT + IBD

Never mind the calendar. Stop calculating maternal antibodies. Take the uncertainty out of infectious bursal disease (IBD) vaccine schedules. Advanced vector technology delivers a simpler solution to IBD vaccination.

WHY: The Reason We Developed VAXXITEK HVT + IBD 

Chicks absorb maternal antibodies against IBD that gradually decline as the bird grows, but while still present can interfere with some forms of vaccination. This interference may leave the bird with an unprotected window of time—the "immunity gap"—as maternal antibodies decline but before the next vaccine dose is administered. Because of the high variability of levels of maternal IBD antibodies across individual birds, calculating appropriate timing of vaccine doses can be challenging and laborious.

WHAT : Vector Technology for "2-in-1" Protection

Our solution? Develop an advanced vector vaccine:


  • Instead of a whole IBD virus VAXXITEK HVT + IBD uses only the viral protein 2 (VP2), a major protective antigen of the IBD virus, to stimulate IBD immunity
  • A live, whole herpesvirus of turkeys (HVT) is used as the vaccine vector; HVT is non-pathogenic to chickens, but closely related to the Marek's virus, thus stimulating immunity against that disease
  • The HVT vector replicates systemically in the bird, inducing protection against two important diseases in a single vaccine
  • It has been demonstrated in published research that both IBD VP2 and HVT experience minimal interference from inherited maternal antibodies in chickens12
  • As a result, VAXXITEK HVT + IBD can be administered early* with just a single dose10 at the hatchery on a pre-defined schedule: either in-ovo (at 18-19 days) or subcutaneously to healthy day-old chicks
  • Early administration means VAXXITEK HVT + IBD can begin building immunity that will gradually take over as maternal antibodies fade away; several published studies have shown reduced opportunity for an immunity gap11-12, 18-19


HOW: The Technology's Mode of Action

Interested in the science behind VAXXITEK HVT + IBD's mode of action?


WHERE: IBD Protection Around the World

The specific VP2 gene used in VAXXITEK HVT + IBD comes from the Faragher 52/70 strain of the IBD virus. It was isolated during the earliest days of IBD outbreaks and is thought to be the progenitor strain of subsequent IBD virus strains. As such, the Faragher 52/70 insert enables production by VAXXITEK HVT + IBD of the proper antigen to stimulate the immunity of poultry against a wide variety of IBD virus pathotypes 

In fact, more than 65+ scientific papers published to date (see all) have shown that VAXXITEK HVT + IBD stimulated immunity against many different pathotypes of the IBD virus found worldwide, including classic, variant, and very virulent strains.* It has been used to help prevent IBD and Marek's disease (as does an HVT vaccine) on every continent in the world.