ANSES to lead research on foodborne zoonoses

By Joseph James Whitworth contact

- Last updated on GMT

Picture: iStock/Sage78
Picture: iStock/Sage78

Related tags: National food institute, European union, Foodborne illness

An EU programme with more than 40 partners is to build knowledge in areas including foodborne zoonoses.

The European Joint Programme (EJP) on One Health will start from January 2018 and run until the end of 2022.

Programme partners

Austria: Austrian Agency for Health and Food (AGES)

Belgium: Scientific Institute of Public Health (IPH),Veterinary and Agrochemical Research Centre (VAR/CODA/CERVA)

Bulgaria: Bulgarian Food Safety Agency (BFSA), NATIONAL CENTER OF INFECTIOUS AND PARASITIC DISEASES (NCIPD)

Czech Republic: STATNI ZDRAVOTNI USTAV​, VETERINARY RESEARCH INSTITUTE (VRI)

Denmark: National Food Institute - Technical University of Denmark​, National Institute for Health Data and Disease Control (SSI)

Estonia: University of Tartu(UNITA)​, VETERINAAR JA TOIDULABORATOORIUM (VETERINARY AND FOOD LABORATORY)

France: ASSOCIATION MED-VET-NET DE RECHERCHE SUR LES ZOONOSES (Med-Vet-Net Association), Institute Pasteur (IP) ​and National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA)

Germany: Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), FRIEDRICH LOEFFLER INSTITUT - BUNDESFORSCHUNGSINSTITUT FUER TIERGESUNDHEIT​, ROBERT KOCH-INSTITUT

Hungary: NATIONAL CENTER FOR EPIDEMIOLOGY (NCE)

Ireland: Agriculture and Food Development Authority (Teagasc), National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG)

Italy: ISTITUTO ZOOPROFILATTICO SPERIMENTALE DELLA LOMBARDIA E DELL'EMILIA ROMAGNA BRUNO UBERTINI, ISTITUTO ZOOPROFILATTICO SPERIMENTALE DELL'ABRUZZO E DEL MOLISE G CAPORALE ENTE, National Institute of Health (ISS)

Netherlands: DLO Foundation (DLO), National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM)

Norway: NORWEGIAN INSTITUTE OF PUBLIC HEALTH (NIPH), NORWEGIAN VETERINARY INSTITUTE

Poland: PANSTWOWY INSTYTUT WETERYNARYJNY - PANSTWOWY INSTYTUT BADAWCZY

Portugal: National Institute for Agricultural and Veterinarian Research (iniav), National Institute of Health Dr Ricardo Jorge

Romania: INSTITUTUL DE IGIENA SI SANATATE PUBLICA VETERINARIA, INSTITUTUL NATIONAL DE CERCETARE DEZVOLTARE PENTRU MICROBIOLOGIE SI IMUNOLOGIE

Spain: National Institute for Agricultural and Food Research and Technology, UNIVERSIDAD COMPLUTENSE DE MADRID (UCM)

Sweden: FOLKHALSOMYNDIGHETEN​, LIVSMEDELSVERKET, STATENS VETERINAERMEDICINSKA ANSTALT

UK: Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), Department of Health (DH), UNIVERSITY OF SURREY

Costing €90m, 50% of the money will come from the European Commission.

Zoonoses are diseases naturally transmitted from warm-blooded animals to humans.

They have social and financial impacts in Europe and need to be addressed by all parts of the farm-to-fork food chain.

Study of infectious agents

The EJP will generate scientific data for the analysis of health risks and their assessment by national and European agencies and reduce duplication of work.

It will be coordinated by L’Agence nationale de sécurité sanitaire de l’alimentation, de l’environnement et du travail (ANSES) in France and involves partners from 19 Member States.

The work is needed to better understand processes triggering and propagating zoonoses, routing in the animal–human-environment triangle and impact on public health.

The network of governmental research groups includes reference labs and one medical and veterinary institute from each Member State.

Other French partners are l’Inra, l’Institut Pasteur and Santé publique France.

The One Health concept recognises human health is dependent on animal health and the environment and the foodborne contaminants that affect human health, animal health and the environment are linked.

Study of infectious agents (bacteria, microbiological toxins and viruses) that may cross these barriers is the main focus of the EJP.

The aim is to integrate and align medical, veterinary and food institutes through joint programming of research agendas matching the needs of European and national policy makers and stakeholders.

Foodborne zoonoses focus

Research centres, most of which have reference mandates on foodborne zoonoses, represent a community whose aim is to promote scientific progress in zoonoses, antimicrobial resistance and emerging risks.

The programme is co-funded from participating institutes and the European Union (Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation).

The consortium will interact with programme owners of the partners, an external scientific advisory board and a stakeholder committee (ECDC and EFSA).

It will help with information dissemination, education and training, access to strain collections, biobanks, experimental facilities and databases, including harmonisation, standardisation, proficiency tests, training, short-term missions and workshops.

Technologies around genomics research and tools including biotechnological and epidemiological advances will be used while taking into account harmonisation of diagnostic tests.

Activities will be coordinated with related European research projects such as EFFORT and COMPARE and take into account relevant bodies such as OIE, WHO and Codex Alimentarius.

The World Health Organizarion (WHO) said the most virulent foodborne diseases and pathogens causing disease are Campylobacter, E. coli, Salmonella, Shigella species and Trichinella.

The agency estimated that each year as many as 600 million fall ill after consuming contaminated food in a 2015 report looking at the burden of foodborne diseases caused by 31 agents. 

Of these, 420 000 people die, including 125,000 children under the age of five.

RIVM, Wageningen Bioveterinary Research (WBVR) and the Netherlands Centre for One Health (NCOH) are also involved in the EJP.

The organisations collaborate in the country to counteract the threat of emerging zoonoses and antimicrobial resistance and can now apply this work at EU level.

RIVM leads the Strategic Research Agenda of the One Health EJP.

WBVR has co-responsibility for the Joint Research Projects and the Educational Work package involving PhD students.

Related topics: Food Safety & Quality

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