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Sheep breech after intradermal treatment (right) and without treatment (left).

The Australian wool industry has extensively researched a range of intradermal agents to modify the breech of sheep. These intradermal agents collagenase and cetrimide, and sub-dermal agents calcium alginate and cyanoacrylate proved unsuccessful in trials. In recent years AWI has investigated the use of Sodium Lauryl Sulphate and Liquid Nitrogen.

The intradermal agent in SkinTraction® (Sodium Lauryl Sulphate, SLS), is an anionic surfactant commonly used at low concentrations in toothpaste, shampoos, cosmetics and food. Cobbett Technologies developed SkinTraction® with support from AWI.

A needleless applicator delivers a measured dose of the SLS intradermal one millimetre into the skin - not through the skin, or into the muscle. This is designed to cause skin contraction without an open wound.

The APVMA have registered SkinTraction® with tight label use requirements and further research and development is needed to reduce any chance of the active moving through the skin layer into deeper tissues and improve commercial aspects of application.

AWI has also invested in Liquid Nitrogen with Dr John Steinfort, however in extensive welfare trials it was found that there was not a significant welfare benefit over mulesing with pain relief. John Steinfort has modified the method of application and is continuing to develop the process further under his own resources.

Further Information

SkinTraction® - click the links to find out more about this intradermal agent: