The Pirbright Institute receives strategic funding from BBSRC


All bluetongue virus (BTV) pre-movement and export testing is now being carried out at Pirbright. Turnaround time for PCR and ELISA testing is 5 working days. Please take this into account when submitting samples.

New: As of June 12th 2009 Pirbright will be performing ELISA testing using an improved assay for the detection of BTV antibodies produced earlier in infection and after vaccination.

Please ensure all samples are adequately packaged to prevent breakage, address the package:
FAO Pirbright Reference Laboratories,
The Pirbright Institute,
Ash Road,
GU24 0NF.
Please ensure sender information is given on the back of the package. Failure to do so may result in delayed results.

Developments involving The Pirbright Institute

  • The Pirbright Institute is the diagnostic laboratory for bluetongue in the UK, and is the Reference Laboratory for bluetongue for the EU and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). In July 2008 we commenced an investigation into the uptake and efficacy of bluetongue vacination in the uk
  • We are a memeber of the Joint Campaign Against Bluetongue (JAB), supporting bluetongue vaccination
  • Our experts on bluetongue virus, the disease, midges, weather and mathematical modelling of disease spread are continually giving advice to the UK Government, the EU and OIE. Read more about bluetongue at our BITE site: Bluetongue Information, Typing and Epidemiology

Culicoides midges spread bluetongue virus and other viruses e.g. African horse sickness virus. Two videos are available, showing how and why institute scientists capture midges in the field. Read more about the midges here.

Bluetongue in Britain and elsewhere in northern Europe 2006 - 2008.