Scientists from The Pirbright Institute and The Roslin Institute have launched The Immunological Toolbox, a website that provides a platform for veterinary researchers to find resources and collaborate. The Toolbox aims to remove barriers to veterinary vaccine development by providing a central database of reagents and aiding information exchange.
The Pirbright Institute has entered into a worldwide exclusive partnership with ECO Animal Health Ltd (ECO), a wholly owned subsidiary of ECO Animal Health Group plc, on two new projects to combat significant diseases of poultry.
The Pirbright Institute and its research partners have granted MSD Animal Health an exclusive commercial licence for a new, effective and affordable vaccine to protect livestock against several serotypes of foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV). The new vaccine is more stable than current foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) vaccines and is less reliant on a cold-chain during vaccine distribution – characteristics that give the vaccine greater potential for helping to relieve the burden placed on regions where the disease is endemic in large parts of Africa, the Middle East and Asia.
Scientists at The Pirbright Institute have identified African swine fever virus (ASFV) proteins that can trigger an immune response in pigs. The team hopes to develop a vaccine using these proteins that is capable of protecting against the deadly pig disease.
On 14 June 2019, scientists at The Pirbright Institute destroyed the final archive stocks of rinderpest virus held in the World Reference Laboratory for Rinderpest. This completed a major milestone in the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) programme to ensure the world remains free from the eradicated disease.
The Pirbright Institute returned as a festival sponsor to Cheltenham Science Festival between 7 and 9 June 2019. Pirbright’s theme this year was ‘Viral Survival’, which centred on diseases that can spread from animals to people, called zoonoses, and how Pirbright scientists are working on different strategies to predict and prevent pandemics.
Researchers at The Pirbright Institute will partner with the Belgian biotechnology company ViroVet to develop the first antiviral drugs that act against African swine fever (ASF). In the absence of a vaccine, antiviral drugs could provide an alternative control method which would help limit clinical signs in pigs and lower virus replication. This could reduce the spread of disease and help to contain outbreaks, ultimately reducing the number of pigs lost to this deadly viral infection.
The Pirbright Institute, a world-leading centre of excellence in research and surveillance of virus diseases of farm animals and viruses that spread from animals to humans announces the appointment of Professor John Stephenson as Chair of the Trustee Board and six new Trustees. Professor Stephenson succeeds Professor Quintin McKellar CBE, who is stepping down. Professor Stephenson is joined by Trustees Mr Ian Bateman, Mr Ian Black, Mr Jon Coles, Professor Vince Emery, Dr Sandy Primrose and Jane Tirard.
The Pirbright Institute took Dr Zoo’s Travelling Science Lab out on the road for the first time at Innovate Guildford 2019, a local science and arts festival, which took place on Saturday 23 March. Visitors entering the ‘Viral Survival’ themed mini escape room were challenged with a series of scientific puzzles which they had to crack in under five minutes in order to survive a deadly virus.
The Pirbright Institute has received an award worth up to $2.6 million to develop proof-of-concept tools that could prevent mosquitoes from transmitting a broad range of viruses. The project forms part of DARPA’s Preventing Emerging Pathogenic Threats (PREEMPT) programme, which aims to predict and contain viral mutations to prevent cross-species transmission of viral infectious disease from animals and insects to humans.