ILRI and India’s National Institute of Animal Biotechnology explore collaboration opportunities in livestock disease diagnostics and vaccine development

(The post was written by Kennady Vijayalakshmy, a consultant scientist with ILRI in South Asia, with additional editing by Paul Karaimu, senior communications officer, ILRI)

In October 2019, senior officials from the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) and the Department of Biotechnology of the National Institute of Animal Biotechnology (NIAB) held discussion to explore collaboration opportunities in livestock research for development in the country.

On 17 October, Habibar Rahman, ILRI regional representative for South Asia, met with Subeer Suhash Majumdar, director of NIAB, to discuss ongoing research in the two organizations and identify possible areas for collaboration. Majumdar said NIAB’s research priorities include animal health, particularly disease diagnostics and vaccine development, biotechnology, rumen metagenomics, animal production, animal genomics for indigenous animal conservation and dairy development. He said tackling antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in poultry was also a priority area for NIAB.

Habibar shared ILRI’s global and regional activities including animal diseases economics, backyard poultry genomics, methane emission and its mitigation, feed and fodder, among others. Among the issues discussed was formalizing an agreement that will enable collaboration between researchers from ILRI and NIAB. Both organizations, Habibar said, would benefit from working together closely and be able to better contribute to improving the livelihoods of livestock keepers in the country.

The meeting identified possible areas of future collaboration including animal disease diagnostics and vaccine development to tackle important diseases such as bovine tuberculosis, leptospirosis, brucellosis, theileriosis and AMR issues.

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From left: Nagendra R. Hegde, NIAB scientist; Ravi Kumar Gandham, NIAB scientist; Padmakumar Varijakshapanicker, ILRI scientist ; Habibar Rahman, regional representative for ILRI South Asia;  Subeer S. Majumdar, director, Department of Biotechnology, NIAB; Vijayalakshmy Kennady, ILRI scientist (photo credit: ILRI).

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