Doramectin is a macrocyclic lactone with a broad spectrum of activity similar to ivermectin. It is effective against roundworms (gastrointestinal, respiratory, renal, in the skin, etc.) and, depending on the delivery form and the dosage, also against a number of external parasites such as lice, mites and various myiasis. However, it is ineffective against tapeworms and flukes, and at the usual use recommendations it doesn't control fleas, stable flies, mosquitoes, horse flies, multi-host ticks (e.g. Amblyomma spp, Dermacentor spp, Haemaphysalis spp, Ixodes spp, Rhipicephalus spp, etc.) and several other external parasites.

Doramectin is moderately used in cattle, sheep and pigs, mainly in pour-ons and injectables. It is used in horses in several countries in Latin America as oral pastes or gels. So far it is not used at all in pets. It is not used either in crop protection pesticides.

In the last years it has been increasingly used in some countries against cattle ticks (Boophilus = Rhipicephalus microplus) and horn & buffalo flies (Haematobia irritans). Against cattle ticks, both as an injectable (at 0.2 mg/kg) and as a pour-on (0.5 mg/kg) control (~95%) is usually better than with ivermectin but without knock-down effect, i.e. the treated animals need 7-10 days to become more or less tick free. Control of horn & buffalo flies is initially sufficient (~85%) but falls down quickly after the first two weeks.

However, resistance of some parasites to all macrocyclic lactones is already very frequent worldwide and can be extremely high, particularly in gastrointestinal roundworms of sheep, goats, cattle, and horses, and is increasing in cattle ticks.

The table below indicates some usual dosing recommendations for doramectin issued by manufacturers or documented in the scientific literature. They may not be approved in some countries.

Dosing recommendations for DORAMECTIN
Delivery Parasites Dose (against doramectin-susceptible parasites)
Topical (pour-on) Roundworms 0.5 mg/kg
Topical (pour-on) External parasites 0.5 mg/kg
Topical (pour-on) Cattle ticks 0.5 mg/kg. Control is usually good (~95%) but without knock-down effect.
Subcutaneous Roundworms 0.2 mg/kg
Subcutaneous Cochliomyia hominivorax 0.2 mg/kg; healing after 4-6 days ; ~35 days protection.
Subcutaneous Dermatobia hominis 0.2 mg/kg; healing after 6 days ; ~35 days protection.
Subcutaneous Hypoderma spp 0.2 mg/kg
Subcutaneous Cattle ticks 0.2 mg/kg. Control is usually good (~95%) but without knock-down effect.
Subcutaneous Mites 0.2 mg/kg; incomplete control of sucking lice
Subcutaneous Sucking lice 0.2 mg/kg
Delivery Parasites  Dose (against doramectin-susceptible parasites)
Subcutaneous Roundworms 0.2 mg/kg
Subcutaneous Psoroptes ovis 0.2 mg/kg; animals free of mites 7 days post treatment.
Subcutaneous Other mites and lice 0.2 mg/kg
Subcutaneous Oestrus ovis 0.2 mg/kg
Delivery Parasites Dose (against doramectin-susceptible parasites)
Oral Roundworms 0.2 mg/kg
Oral Gasterophilus 0.2 mg/kg
Delivery Parasites  Dose (against doramectin-susceptible parasites)
Intramuscular Gastrointestinal roundworms
0.3 mg/kg
Intramuscular Sarcoptes scabiei 0.3 mg/kg; animals free of mites 14 days post treatment.

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In most finished products, efficacy and safety depend not only on the amount of active ingredient(s) but also on their formulations (i.e. the type and amount of so-called inert ingredients), particularly in injectables and in topical pour-ons and spot-ons. These inert ingredients can significantly affect the pharmacokinetic behavior (e.g. absorption through the skin or from the injection site, distribution within the body, spreading throughout the body surface, etc). Generic products usually contain the same amount of active ingredient(s) as the original product, but often in quite different formulations. In many cases, the curative (therapeutic) efficacy of the different formulations is quite comparable, but the protective (prophylactic) efficacy that determines the length of protection against re-infestations may be rather different.

Dosing recommendations for antiparasitics depend on national regulations. National regulatory authorities determine whether a product is approved for a given indication, i.e. use on a particular host at a specific dose and against a specific parasite. Check the labels of the products available in your country for specific information on approved indications.

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