Oral trial of a cholera vaccine in Australia
In 2014 the Gene Technology Regulator (the Regulator) approved a trial of an oral live genetically modified cholera vaccine. Up to 1000 people were given a dose of the vaccine in a drink.
Cholera causes tens of thousands of deaths per year. The vaccine is for travellers to parts of the World where cholera is endemic, as well as for use in developing countries in response to cholera outbreaks.
The OGTR legislation uses the term ‘environmental release’ to describe applications where the GMO will not be confined to a laboratory. This has led to speculation on some websites that aerial spraying. This speculation is false. There was never any proposal to deliver the vaccine by spray. The vaccine is intended for delivery to individuals in a drink as part of a clinical trial and only with their consent.