Vaccine talk is on the tips of everyone’s tongues these days.

But it’s not just human beings that need vaccines; animals do too. Injecting an animal, however, is both time-consuming for the farmers and painful for the animals. In extreme cases, the stress of being vaccinated can lead to death.

TransAlgae has developed a new technology, based on genetically engineered microalgae, to deliver vaccines orally as a powder, pill or in animal feed.

The Israeli biotech startup, founded in 2008 and based in Rehovot at the Weizmann Science Park, recently signed a collaboration agreement with France-based Virbac, the sixth largest animal health company worldwide with 33 subsidiaries and a presence in more than 100 countries.

The partnership aims to create “an effective, elegant, industrialized vaccination method” and manufacturing site.

TransAlgae’s technology can also be used as a less-toxic alternative to chemical crop insecticide sprays.

Ultimately, it could also be used in human vaccines that can be delivered orally and won’t require a visit to the clinic.

The company reportedly has invested $25 million in developing its technology to date, and is looking to raise additional capital, especially for its proposed oral Covid-19 vaccine for humans.

TransAlgae produces its microalgae in controlled fermenters without antibiotics. Its therapeutics can be created quickly, at low cost, in production facilities anywhere.

The powdered algae vaccine is currently being tested against diseases affecting fish, shrimp and swine.