Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER

Derio, Spain

Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER

Derio, Spain
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News Article | November 28, 2016
Site: www.eurekalert.org

Regenerative practices improve soil quality and pasture diversity, as the European LIFE Regen Farming project, due to end this year, has been able to show. Under the coordination of the Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER-Tecnalia, the project has had the participation of the Navarrese Institute of Agri-Food Technologies and Infrastructures and the Urduñederra Rural Development Agency. The last few decades have seen the gradual abandoning of grazing practices in many livestock systems, while the problems of the sustainability of agricultural and livestock activity have become increasingly clear. Likewise, the growing environmental concern and the need to produce quality food in a sustainable, environmentally-friendly way are shaping the agri-food sector as a key sector for society. The LIFE Regen Farming project, developed under these premises, seeks to determine the viability of regenerative practices as an alternative for the sustainability of livestock farms. The regenerative management put into practice in the three areas in the study -on NEIKER land in Arkaute, INTIA land in Roncesvalles (Navarre), and in Orduña, on commercial farms with pastures used by beef cattle- was based on direct sowing using perennial and leguminous species, organic fertiliser from the farm itself and grazing schemes adapted to each farm. It has been possible to demonstrate throughout the project that these pasture management techniques achieve up to 10-15% more grass. The production of 'extra' grass constitutes a saving in the purchase of fodder and highlights the technical and economic effectiveness of regenerative management. Furthermore, the sheep managed under regenerative grazing have the same milk yields and composition, so the flock's production parameters are not altered. On the other hand, on an environmental level, regenerative practices increase carbon fixation in the pasture (+10%), they cut the carbon footprint per unit of product (-10%), they improve soil fertility (+10% of particulate organic matter) and finally increase the botanical diversity of the meadowland (+3%). All this leads to an increase in both the environmental and economic viability of the farms that implement these practices. In terms of social impact, livestock farmers were involved in the project right from the start, and their adaptation to the new scientific and technical knowledge was achieved in a straightforward way. The trials in the LIFE Regen Farming project were conducted in three different areas in order to test these regenerative practices in a range of agro-climatic conditions to see the result of the new practices when applied to soils with different characteristics. For this purpose, the working methodology involving Participatory Action Research, in which researchers, rural development technicians and livestock farmers actively participated, was fundamental. Throughout the project's lifetime a great effort was made to combine scientific knowledge with the fine-tuning of simple evaluation methodologies in the field and oriented towards livestock farmers or technicians. In addition, meetings for dissemination purposes and seminars were held with theory sessions as well as indoor workshops and field practices. All this was carried out within the working framework offered by Participatory Action Research, a key element enabling the livestock farmers to continue with these practices. Complete information on the development of the project plus all the documents generated including illustrative videos of the projects have been posted on the project's website http://www. and can be accessed by anyone who is interested. LIFE+ Regen Farming was selected by the European Commission's LIFE+ programme from among over 1,150 initiatives received for its 2012 call. It had a budget to the tune of 1,338,000 euros, of which 669,000 was funded by the European Union and the partners in the project.


Arrausi-Subiza M.,Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER | Ibabe J.C.,Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER | Atxaerandio R.,Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER | Juste R.A.,Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER | Barral M.,Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER
BMC Veterinary Research | Year: 2014

Background: Yersiniosis is a zoonotic disease reported worldwide. Culture and PCR based protocols are the most common used methods for detection of pathogenic Yersinia species in animal samples. PCR sensitivity could be increased by an initial enrichment step. This step is particularly useful in surveillance programs, where PCR is applied to samples from asymptomatic animals. The aim of this study was to evaluate the improvement in pathogenic Yersinia species detection using a suitable enrichment method prior to the real time PCR (rtPCR). Nine different enrichment protocols were evaluated including six different broth mediums (CASO, ITC, PSB, PBS, PBSMSB and PBSSSB).Results: The analysis of variance showed significant differences in Yersinia detection by rtPCR according to the enrichment protocol used. These differences were higher for Y. pseudotuberculosis than for Y. enterocolitica. In general, samples incubated at lower temperatures yielded the highest detection rates. The best results were obtained with PBSMSB and PBS2. Application of PBSMSB protocol to free-ranging wild board samples improved the detection of Y. enterocolitica by 21.2% when compared with direct rtPCR. Y. pseudotuberculosis detection was improved by 10.6% when results obtained by direct rtPCR and by PBSMSB enrichment before rtPCR were analyzed in combination.Conclusions: The data obtained in the present study indicate a difference in Yersinia detection by rtPCR related to the enrichment protocol used, being PBSMSB enrichment during 15 days at 4°C and PBS during 7 days at 4°C the most efficient. The use of direct rtPCR in combination with PBSMSB enrichment prior to rtPCR resulted in an improvement in the detection rates of pathogenic Yersinia in wild boar and could be useful for application in other animal samples. © 2014 Arrausi-Subiza et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


PubMed | Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER
Type: | Journal: Acta veterinaria Scandinavica | Year: 2016

Yersiniosis is a zoonosis widely distributed in Europe and swine carry different serotypes of Yersinia enterocolitica and Y. pseudotuberculosis. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of Y. enterocolitica and Y. pseudotuberculosis in wild boars in northern Spain. The blood of wild boars (n=505) was sampled between 2001 and 2012. Seroprevalence was determined in 490 serum samples with an indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Seventy-two of the animals were also examined for the presence of Y. enterocolitica or Y. pseudotuberculosis in the tonsils with real-time polymerase chain reaction. All the tonsils were analysed twice, directly and after cold enrichment in phosphate-buffered saline supplemented with 1% mannitol and 0.15% bile salts.Antibodies directed against Y. enterocolitica and Y. pseudotuberculosis were detected in 52.5% of the animals. Yersinia enterocolitica was detected with real-time polymerase chain reaction in 33.3% of the wild boars and Y. pseudotuberculosis in 25%. Significant differences were observed according to the sampling year, and the highest prevalence was during winter and spring. The highest antibody levels and Y. enterocolitica prevalence were observed in mountainous areas at altitudes higher than 600m, with very cold winters, and with the highest annual rainfall for each dominant climate. Areas with low and medium livestock populations were associated with the highest seroprevalence of Yersinia spp. in wild boars, whereas areas with high ovine populations had the highest prevalence of Y. enterocolitica.This study shows that Y. enterocolitica and Y. pseudotuberculosis are highly prevalent among wild boars in the Basque country, with Y. enterocolitica most prevalent. The risk of infection among wild boars is influenced by the season and the area in which they live.


PubMed | Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development NEIKER
Type: | Journal: BMC veterinary research | Year: 2014

Yersiniosis is a zoonotic disease reported worldwide. Culture and PCR based protocols are the most common used methods for detection of pathogenic Yersinia species in animal samples. PCR sensitivity could be increased by an initial enrichment step. This step is particularly useful in surveillance programs, where PCR is applied to samples from asymptomatic animals. The aim of this study was to evaluate the improvement in pathogenic Yersinia species detection using a suitable enrichment method prior to the real time PCR (rtPCR). Nine different enrichment protocols were evaluated including six different broth mediums (CASO, ITC, PSB, PBS, PBSMSB and PBSSSB).The analysis of variance showed significant differences in Yersinia detection by rtPCR according to the enrichment protocol used. These differences were higher for Y. pseudotuberculosis than for Y. enterocolitica. In general, samples incubated at lower temperatures yielded the highest detection rates. The best results were obtained with PBSMSB and PBS2. Application of PBSMSB protocol to free-ranging wild board samples improved the detection of Y. enterocolitica by 21.2% when compared with direct rtPCR. Y. pseudotuberculosis detection was improved by 10.6% when results obtained by direct rtPCR and by PBSMSB enrichment before rtPCR were analyzed in combination.The data obtained in the present study indicate a difference in Yersinia detection by rtPCR related to the enrichment protocol used, being PBSMSB enrichment during 15days at 4C and PBS during 7days at 4C the most efficient. The use of direct rtPCR in combination with PBSMSB enrichment prior to rtPCR resulted in an improvement in the detection rates of pathogenic Yersinia in wild boar and could be useful for application in other animal samples.

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