A Foot and Mouth Disease Diagnostic Kit for Southern Africa
Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) is the veterinary infectious disease with the highest significance globally, both in terms of economic impact and food security, given its highly infectious nature, negative impacts on animal wellbeing and productivity, and its implications for successful access to domestic and export markets for livestock and products.
Furthermore, any widespread disruptions of the livestock industry, e.g. by extensive and persistent FMD, can severely affect large numbers of people in rural areas. FMD occurs in seven main strains throughout the world, with the three Southern African Territories (SAT) strains being confined to certain regions in Africa, where it is often endemic in the local wildlife such as the African buffalo.
The Project Involves
- Development and field trials of a new antibody-based diagnostic kit specific for SAT-FMD detection. The kit enables viral identification several months past the initial two-week active outbreak period.
The project forms part of a wider FMD management programme already initiated by the CSIR, which looks at the holistic management of infectious diseases such as FMD using various DNA and protein-based detection technologies coupled with a centralized real-time data reporting IT platform. The development of commercial Afro-centric detection kits for FMD is of critical significance. Such an Africa-specific FMD diagnostic will facilitate African countries' efforts to improve their management and control of FMD, thereby improving local trade and food security, and facilitating their entry into foreign markets.
Dr Phiyani Lebea
Principal Scientist Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) - South Africa
Dr Natasha Beeton-Kempen
Senior Scientist Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) - South Africa
Mr Frank Banda
Senior Reseacher Central Veterinary Research Institute (CVRI) - Zambia
Mr Lorenco Mapaco
Senior Researcher Agricultural Research Institute of Mozambique (IIAM) - Mozambique