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News

Epidemiological analyses of African swine fever in the European Union

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has published its latest annual update on the presence of African swine fever (ASF) in the European Union. During the period covered by the report – November 2018 to October 2019 – Czechia became officially ASF-free. The disease was, however, confirmed as present in Slovakia, meaning there continue to […]

Bluetongue virus strain and origin in 2016 Cyprus outbreak determined

In September 2016, suspected cases of bluetongue in sheep were simultaneously reported in three different locations in Cyprus. Scientists at the European Union Reference Laboratory for Bluetongue (EURL-BT) at The Pirbright Institute confirmed that BTV-8 was present in all samples submitted by the National Reference Laboratory in Nicosia, Cyprus. This was the first time that […]

ERA-NET ICRAD co-funded Call on infectious animal diseases (Opening 31 January 2020)

The first international Call on infectious animal diseases within the framework of the ERA-NET Cofund on International Coordination of Research on Infectious Animal Diseases (ICRAD) opened on 31st January 2020. The ERA-NET ICRAD builds on the successful work of two predecessor ERA-NETs (EMIDA and ANIHWA) and the global network of animal health STAR-IDAZ under Framework […]

Emerging tickborne parasite detected in UK sheep

Scientists have detected Babesia venatorum within sheep in the North of Scotland. The research, by scientists at the University of Glasgow’s School of Veterinary Medicine and Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine, is published in Emerging Infectious Diseases. The study reports that this is the first time B. venatorum has been identified in […]

Early detection is key to controlling spread of African swine fever in Europe

Improved surveillance, communication and collaboration are key to controlling the spread of African swine fever in Europe, according to a risk assessment carried out by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). The assessment estimates the potential for the disease to spread across south-eastern Europe. It was requested by the European Commission to support efforts to […]

Badger culling increases ranging behaviour among survivors

A study led by researchers from the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and Imperial College London has found that culling drives badgers to roam further afield. They say this helps to explain why the practice, intended to reduce bovine tuberculosis (TB) transmission, can sometimes exacerbate the problem instead. Published in the Journal of Applied Ecology, […]

The Immunological Toolbox launched

The Immunological Toolbox website was launched at the International Veterinary Immunology Symposium in Seattle last week: https://www.immunologicaltoolbox.co.uk/ . It is a repository of antibodies, other reagents and resources to promote research into veterinary immunology. The aim of the Toolbox is to remove barriers to veterinary vaccine development by facilitating information exchange and collaboration within a […]

Changing climate impacts bluetongue vectors

Scientists at The Pirbright Institute, Rothamsted Research, The Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and the Met Office have provided evidence that the UK midge season has extended over the last 40 years due to climate change. The findings could help scientists to make better predictions about how the spread of livestock diseases that are transmitted […]

Re-emerged strain of Bluetongue virus remains a threat in Europe

Scientists at The Pirbright Institute have shown that the strain of Bluetongue virus serotype 8 (BTV-8) currently circulating in France poses a threat to susceptible animals in Europe, despite causing less clinical disease than the original BTV-8 strain responsible for the first UK bluetongue outbreak in 2007. The 2006-2009 European outbreak of BTV-8 was the […]

Limiting the spread of bluetongue in northern Europe

Scientists at the University of Liverpool have used mathematical modelling to identify why the 2007 UK outbreak of bluetongue was smaller than it could have been and to predict the future impact of the disease in northern Europe as the climate warms. A paper published in Scientific Reports suggests that a combination of geographic location, […]