We at RVC were asked to undertake a disease prioritisation task. This was very interesting as we wanted to know which transboundary animal diseases and zoonoses were being studied in China, and in the EU, to see whether there were any differences or similarities in priorities. Then we would be able to hypothesise about why this might be, how to address any gaps, and how to harmonise our efforts in tackling these diseases of livestock which can have a hugely detrimental impact on food security, human health, local and global economies and international trade.
We conducted a review of published animal health research from the last 3 years. Interestingly we found that the most studied species in the EU was cattle, whereas in China pigs and poultry were the main focus. Tuberculosis, bluetongue, brucellosis, foot-and-mouth disease and influenza were the most studied topics in the EU, whereas in China top priorities include influenza (particularly avian subtypes), PRRS, classical swine fever, Newcastle disease, and porcine epidemic diarrhoea (PED). Priorities that were common for both sides include influenza, brucellosis, African swine fever, rabies and antimicrobial resistance.
These findings indicate potential gaps and also opportunities for collaboration which will be explored further as part of ongoing LinkTADs work.