The UCD Centre for Veterinary Epidemiology and Risk Analysis (UCD CVERA) is the national resource centre for veterinary epidemiology in Ireland, located within the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine at University College Dublin. The Centre was initially established as the Tuberculosis Investigation Unit, but in recent years has broadened its remit to cover a wide range of international, national and local animal health matters, including: - Epidemiological support for the control and eradication of regulatory animal diseases, including the national eradication programme for bovine tuberculosis; - Work in support of Animal Health Ireland (www.animalhealthireland.ie), which is providing a proactive, coordinated and industry-led approach in Ireland to non-regulatory animal health concerns (such as mastitis, bovine viral diarrhoea and Johne’s disease); and - Epidemiological support for a broad range of other animal health and welfare issues relating to emergency animal disease preparedness and response (for example, avian influenza, bluetongue and equine infectious anaemia), on-farm investigations, welfare of farmed livestock and horses, health of companion animals and farmed fish, and international collaboration. UCD CVERA staff work closely with national policy-makers, both in government and industry. Staff also contribute to training in veterinary medicine, both to undergraduates and postgraduate. A broad range of expertise is represented within the Centre, including database development and management, geographic information systems, statistics, veterinary medicine and epidemiology. The Centre is staffed by employees of University College Dublin and of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM). The badger vaccine project is a programme of research with the objective to develop a vaccine to control tuberculosis in badgers and to break the link of infection to cattle. In studies with captive badgers, we have demonstrated that vaccination of badgers with BCG by a number of routes, including oral delivery, generates high levels of protective immunity against challenge with M. bovis. We are continuing to carry out studies with captive population of badgers to refine the vaccine and address issues relating to the eventual licensing of the vaccine as a veterinary medicine. In our most recent captive badger study, the preliminary analysis of data indicates that lower doses of oral BCG vaccine (10^5 colony forming units) are just as effective at protecting badgers against experimental challenge, compared with the standard dose (10^7 colony forming units). This may have important implications for cost of manufacture of an oral vaccine. The vaccine field trial, which commenced in 2009 to test the efficacy of the oral BCG vaccine in free-living badgers over a wide geographic area in Co. Kilkenny, is nearing completion. The vaccination phase of the field trial finished in 2012, and 273 badgers have since been removed from the site for detailed post-mortem analysis. The analysis of the data has commenced and it is hoped to present preliminary results early in 2014.
University College Dublin ->
Veterinary Medicine Research Collection
University College Dublin ->
CVERA Research Collection