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In the United States, they too are now vaccinated against the coronavirus, and this is a world first. Several great apes at the San Diego Zoo in California have been given two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine. But a vaccine not quite like the others since it was specially developed for animals. </p><div> <p>They are the first non-human primates to be now protected from Covid-19 infection: 4 orangutans and 5 bonobos. On Friday, these residents of the San Diego Zoo received two shots of an experimental vaccine, designed specifically for animals and developed by the specialized firm Zoetis.
Something to reassure the managers of one of the largest zoos in the world. In early January, several of the zoo’s gorillas had tested positive for coronavirus and then placed in quarantine. This was the first case of transmission to monkeys. The fear then was to see the contaminations in primates, with which we humans share more than 95% of common genomes, and therefore a similar vulnerability to the virus.
For the time being, no side effects are to be deplored in the primates which have just been vaccinated. Zoetis, a veterinary research company, a former branch of Pfizer, is continuing its experiments. These medical advances should ultimately be aimed first at endangered great apes, primarily the bonobo, which have 200 representatives in zoos across the globe.
Source site www.rfi.fr