No To Foot-And-Mouth For Research

AUSTRALIA - Unless foot-and-mouth disease arrives uninvited in Australia, scientists will never get a look at the virus at the Australian Animal Health Laboratory (Aahl).
calendar icon 17 August 2007
clock icon 1 minute read

Under Australian quarantine regulations the laboratory is not allowed to receive samples of the disease from other countries because of the risk it poses to its livestock industry.

Aahl, however, provides advice on the disease and worked closely with New Zealand when there was a foot-and-mouth scare here two years ago.

Scientists can perform a range of detection tests and identify all seven of the disease's strains.

Aahl director Martyn Jeggo said scientists there would welcome the opportunity to study the disease.

"We think it makes sense, but the fact remains we are not allowed foot-and-mouth material here."

The highly contagious viral disease of cloven-hoofed animals is a sensitive subject at animal-health laboratories around the world.

Last week the discovery of a foot-and-mouth outbreak at a farm south-west of London led to speculation that it may have come from a strain used in vaccine production at the nearby Pirbright animal-health-research laboratory site.

Source: Stuff
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