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Our science

The Pirbright Institute provides the UK with capacity to predict, detect, understand and respond to the threat and potential attack of serious viral diseases of livestock and viruses that spread from animals to humans. These viral diseases may not be present in the UK (endemic) and only circulating abroad (exotic). The Institute's strategic priorities are to:

  • Identify, contain and eradicate economically important viral diseases of livestock which are present in, or threaten, the UK
  • Research and survey high consequence livestock and zoonotic virus diseases which are present in, or threaten, the UK
  • Act as an international hub for disease surveillance to provide early warning of possible disease incursions
  • Carry out fundamental research into virus genetics, virus-cell interactions, arthropod-virus interactions, disease pathogenesis, and livestock and avian immunology and vaccinology
  • Control livestock and zoonotic virus diseases by the development of vaccines, antivirals, diagnostics, genetic selection, genetically modified animals and arthropod vectors, and the modelling of diseases outbreaks
  • Provide national facilities and expertise in high bio-containment laboratories, insectaries, animal facilities and collections of vectors and viruses which are accessible to the UK academic and commercial communities

View The Pirbright Institute Science Strategy 2020 - 2025 and the Institute's 2022-2023 Annual Report

Find out more about animals used in research.

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® The Pirbright Institute 2023 | A company limited by guarantee, registered in England no. 559784. The Institute is also a registered charity.