Research facility opened to help track and diagnose avian influenza outbreaks
Scientists’ ability to respond to outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza and other emerging poultry diseases have been given a boost with the opening of an innovative research unit.
The USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, Southeast Poultry Research Laboratory, opened the doors to its facility at the US National Research Center in Athens, Georgia.
It’s hoped the laboratory will help with avian influenza diagnosis and tracking, while also helping researchers as they investigate ways to control bird health challenges such as Newcastle disease, reoviruses, infectious bursal disease and Marek’s disease.
Speaking at the opening of the facility, USDA’s Chief Scientist Chavonda Jacobs-Young, PhD, said investing in poultry research infrastructure was important.
“This modernized facility will serve as the largest poultry research complex in the US, housing the largest number of researchers and staff dedicated to preventing, discovering and solving poultry health problems,” she added.
The Southeast Poultry Research Laboratory is a key part of the US National Poultry Research Center and plays an important role in addressing poultry viral diseases both nationally and internationally.
The laboratory has been at the forefront of developing the molecular test used around the world to diagnose avian influenza and Newcastle disease.
Its scientists have had an important role in developing vaccines for emergency use and commercial application, tracking virus movement and spread, and understanding how to break the transmission cycle of avian influenza.
(Featured photo provided by the M. A. Mortenson Company)
Posted on October 13, 2022