The Pirbright Institute will support the NHS Berkshire and Surrey Pathology Services (BSPS) and the national NHS Test and Trace programme by providing induction and training for staff joining the new Lighthouse Laboratory in Bracknell. The Lighthouse Laboratory is designed to increase the UK’s COVID-19 diagnostic testing capability and will process COVID-19 samples from drive-in centres as well as swabs that people take at home.
News from December 2020
Effective flu vaccines are crucial for controlling disease outbreaks in pigs and reducing the threat of transmission to humans. A collaboration between The Pirbright Institute, the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA), the University of Edinburgh and The Jenner Institute has shown that several vaccines for the 2009 swine flu pandemic virus (H1N1) were able to reduce signs of disease and virus shedding in pigs, but that immunised pigs could still pass the virus on to unvaccinated pen mates.
Scientists at The Pirbright Institute have created flightless mosquitoes by editing a specific gene that is required for flight – but only in females. This could provide a more controlled and targeted way of reducing mosquito populations (females bite to obtain a blood meal and thereby spread disease; males do not bite) in select areas where mosquito-borne diseases such as Zika and dengue are rife.