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Technological advances in veterinary diagnostics: opportunities to deploy rapid decentralised tests to detect pathogens affecting livestock

Author(s) : E.L.A. Howson, et al.

Summary :

Sustainable food production capable of feeding a growing human population is a significant global challenge, and is a priority encompassed within the United Nations Millennium Development Goal to ‘eradicate extreme poverty and hunger’. Infectious diseases reduce the productivity of farm animals, and the globalised trade of animals and their products increases the threat of disease incursion. Accurate and rapid diagnostic tests are an essential component of contingency plans to detect, control and eradicate such diseases. Diagnosis involves a ‘pipeline’ that normally starts with clinical suspicion, followed by collecting samples, transporting specimens to a centralised laboratory setting (e.g. national/international Reference Laboratories), analysing these samples using a range of diagnostic tests and reporting the results. However, the transport of specimens from the field to the laboratory can be a lengthy process that can delay critical decision-making and severely affect the quality of the samples.


Decentralised testing – Detection – Diagnostics – Field diagnostics – Livestock – Molecular assays – Point-of-care testing – Rapid testing.

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