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The impact of our research

Our impact

Our work has a huge impact both nationally and internationally as we fulfil our mission to be the world's leading innovative centre for preventing and controlling viral diseases of livestock. We play a crucial role in protecting UK livestock from viruses that have huge socio-economic impact with a unique combination of fundamental research and applied science in diagnostics and control.

The Institute is home to Reference Laboratories that focus on surveillance of viruses that are not endemic, but pose a threat to the UK. These include foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) and bluetongue virus (BTV).  We provide the UK with its capability to monitor current and future threats from exotic viruses, to inform national and international government and non-governmental agencies, and to lead with efforts to best control exotic viruses if and when they arrive in the UK. For details on the importance and relevance of each of our areas of research please see the individual Group Research pages.

Latest published research

View a full list of published research by scientists at the Institute.

Award-winning science

Our staff and trustees have been honoured by her Majesty the Queen and others for their contributions to science, innovation and technology transfer. These awards include:

  • Professor Venu Nair awarded an OBE for his work in the field of avian disease research.
  • Dr Luke Alphey was voted BBSRC’s Innovator of the Year 2014, recognising his work on the genetic based control of disease insects.
  • Dr Bryan Charleston recognised by the Association for Veterinary Teaching and Research Work (AVTRW) and presented with the Selborne Award for his contribution to foot-and-mouth disease research.
  • Professor Peter Mertens, Dr Simon Carpenter, Dr Simon Gubbins and Dr Carrie Batten presented with BBSRC’s Social Innovators of the Year Award for 2013 for their work on the identification, modelling and control of bluetongue outbreaks in the UK and northern Europe.
  • Dr Nigel Ferris received the 2012 Meritorious Award from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) in recognition of his foot-and-mouth disease research and development work.
  • Professors John Anderson and Tom Barrett were awarded a medal by the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation in 2011 for their contribution to the eradication of rinderpest. 
  • Dr Don King received a Technology Innovation Award from Genecom in 2009 for his work on the detection of foot-and-mouth disease virus. 
  • Dr Simon Carpenter was presented with the first Rooker Award in 2009 for his research on the spread of viruses by arthropods. 
  • Professors Philip Mellor and John Anderson were awarded an OBE and MBE, respectively, for their work in the fields of bluetongue and foot-and-mouth disease diagnostics
  • Professor Martin Shirley (Director of the Institute from 2006-2010) received a CBE for Services to Science.

For further information on the impact of our scientific research please look at specific area of research.

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