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LYON, France

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: KBBE-2009-1-3-02 | Award Amount: 4.15M | Year: 2010

The major outstanding challenges of orbivirus vaccine research is to develop vaccines that can afford a broad protective immune response against as many serotypes of each virus as possible, and to develop a high throughput DIVA assay (e.g. an ELISA). This project will use a coordinated multipartner approach to address these issues, to develop new experimental prototype vaccines and diagnostic approaches. It will build on specific expertise and reagents that are only available within the consortium and will link out to other international efforts in USA and South Africa to develop improved vaccines for these diseases. The consortium includes a number of industrial partners who are already active in vaccine manufacture for these and other veterinary diseases, in order to ensure that the findings of the research are transferred as soon as possible into commercial vaccines for European livestock. The project also includes two SMEs, who will be specifically involved in the development of DIVA compatible diagnostic tests. In summary, the specific objectives of the project will be: to develop multivalent vaccines using different approaches for Orbiviruses responsible for livestock diseases, in particular, Bluetongue Virus (BTV), African Horse Sickness Virus (AHSV) and Epizootic Haemorrhagic Disease Virus (EHDV); to understand the best vaccination strategy to elicit multi-serotype protection for these viruses in livestock and analyze immune responses for each of the novel vaccines developed for breadth of protection against multiple serotypes; and to develop DIVA compatible diagnostics that will work with the new vaccines developed in order to differentiate between vaccinated and infected animals.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-SICA | Phase: KBBE-2008-1-3-02 | Award Amount: 4.09M | Year: 2009

Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is one of the worlds most infectious diseases of livestock and continues to pose a significant threat to endemic and free regions alike. The impact of FMD on society and international trade is high, thereby demanding stringent prevention, surveillance and control plans taken up in crisis preparedness plans. On the other hand, there is a global increased demand for animal welfare and ethical considerations necessitating a decreased reliance on eradication of animals to control FMD virus (FMDV) spread, and on the use of animals for the regulatory testing of veterinary products. The project seeks to balance these apparently contracting viewpoints by addressing specific gaps in our knowledge on all aspects of FMD control to enable implementation of enhanced animal-sparing vaccine-based control strategies tailored to the needs of free and endemic settings. Consequently, four main objectives have been identified, including (i) the improvement of the quality of existing FMD vaccines and diagnostics, (ii) the refinement and replacement of in vivo FMD vaccine quality tests, (iii) the development of new generation FMD vaccines and diagnostics by applying cutting edge technologies, and (iv) the enhancement of our knowledge on FMDV spread and transmission following the use of high-potency monovalent or multivalent vaccines. The role of wildlife (buffalo, gazelles and wild boar) in FMDV maintenance and transmission will also be investigated. The project consists of seven different, yet interlinked, work packages (WP) each addressing one of the items listed in the Work Programme topic KBBE-2008-1-3-02, and led by renowned WP leaders with years of relevant experience in the field of FMD. As such, significant progress towards the objectives of the Communitys Animal Health Strategy (2007-2013), the European Technology Platform for Global Animal Health, and the Global Roadmap for improving the Tools to Control FMD in Endemic Settings will be achieved.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-ITN-2008 | Award Amount: 2.86M | Year: 2009

In the context of global warming and globalisation, tick and tick-borne diseases (TTBD) are expected to emerge, with an increasing risk for animals and humans. It is imperative therefore to build up training capacities to improve integrated control measures, including the development of efficient and appropriate vaccines. The POSTICK ITN aims to (1) design new effective control strategies for TTBD diseases through understanding the mechanisms of tick-host-pathogen interactions regarding (i) pathogen diversity, survival and transmission, modulation of host immune response and tick survival and (ii) identification of host-pathogen-tick molecules for designing anti-tick vaccine and blocking pathogen transmission; (2) improve career perspectives of early-stage researchers (ESRs), broadening research competences through a strategic training programme consisting of (i) Research Training Packages including 14 individual PhD research projects and (ii) Complementary Training Modules including seminars, workshops, symposiums and a conference, combining the facilities and complementary expertise of 5 universities, 1 research institute and 2 industrial participants from 5 European countries and of 2 associated partners from Brazil and Israel. This ITN will be coordinated by the Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Germany, with a management structure including a steering committee and a supervisory board. The impact of the ITN lies on (i) a complementary research programme covering different areas of tick-pathogen-host interaction, (ii) an innovative training programme of high quality, (iii) improvement of existing collaborations between industry and research centre and universities, (iv) enhancement of the career prospects of ESRs, (v) contributing to European Community policies regarding the promotion of research and technology development, scientific cooperation and capacity building. Taken together, the impact of ITN and the results to be achieved are beyond the state of the art.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: KBBE.2010.1.3-02 | Award Amount: 1.09M | Year: 2011

Animal diseases can cause serious social, economic and environmental damage and in some cases also threaten human health. An increasing number of the major disease problems or threats faced by the livestock industry and zoonoses are of a global nature. The overall aim of the global strategic alliances for the coordination of research on the major infectious diseases of animals is to improve coordination of research activities on the major infectious diseases of livestock and zoonoses so as to hasten the delivery of improved control methods. This will be achieved through the establishment of an international forum of R&D programme owners/managers and international organisations for the purpose of sharing information, improving collaboration on research activities and working towards common research agendas and coordinated research funding on the major animal diseases affecting livestock production and/or human health. It will build on the groundwork established by the SCAR collaborative working group on animal health and welfare research, the EMIDA ERA-NET project and specific INCO-NETs involving partner countries. The scope of the project will include co-ordination of research relevant to emerging and major infectious diseases of livestock, including fish and managed bees, and those infections of livestock that may carry the risk of disease threat to human health. Diseases of wildlife will also be considered where they are identified as reservoirs of infection with emerging and major infectious diseases of humans or production animals. These objectives will be delivered through the following five workpackages: WP1. Project coordination, management, communication and dissemination; WP2. Sharing information on existing research programmes; WP3. Analysis of and responding to global, regional and industry sector priorities; WP4. Networking of ongoing research activities on major issues and WP5. Developing a strategic trans-national animal health research agendas.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: KBBE.2010.1.3-05 | Award Amount: 1.21M | Year: 2010

This European surveillance network for influenza in pigs (ESNIP) 3 will maintain and expand surveillance networks established during previous EC concerted actions (ESNIP 1, QLK2-CT-2000-01636; ESNIP 2, SSPE-022749). Three work packages (WP 2, 3, 4) aim to increase the knowledge of the epidemiology and evolution of swine influenza (SI) virus (SIV) in European pigs through organised field surveillance programmes (WP2). Virus strains detected in these programmes will be subjected to detailed characterisation both antigenically (WP3) and genetically (WP4) using standardised methodology. Specifically this will involve timely information on genomic data and generation of antigenic maps using the latest technology. These analyses will provide significant and timely added value to knowledge of SIV. A strong focus will be monitoring spread and independent evolution of pandemic H1N1 2009 virus in pigs. All these data will in turn be used to improve the diagnosis of SI by updating the reagents used in the recommended techniques (WP2). The virus bank and electronic database that were established during ESNIPs 1 and 2 will also be expanded and formally curated with relevant SIV isolates and information for global dissemination within and outwith the consortium (WP5). ESNIP 3 represents the only organised surveillance network for influenza in pigs and seeks to strengthen formal interactions with human and avian surveillance networks previously established in ESNIP 2. A timely and transparent interaction with these networks will be a key output. These approaches are entirely consistent with improved pandemic preparedness and planning for human influenza whilst providing an evidence base for decisions in relation to veterinary health. The project consortium consists of 24 participants, which contribute a blend of different specialisms and skills ensuring multi-disciplinary cutting-edge outputs. The vast majority of the partners are actively working with SIV including in a field setting. Twenty-one participants are from 11 EU member states, seven of which were actively involved in ESNIP 2. Co-operation with partners in China and North America will continue to promote a greater understanding of the epidemiology of SIVs at a global level.

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