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New approaches in identifying and characterising microbiological and chemical Hazards (ENGAGE)


This third-party funded project is conducted in the framework of the BfR research programme on exposure estimation and assessment of biological risks.

EFSA grant number: GP/EFSA/AFSCO/2015/01/CT1

Project homepage:

Project description:

The objective of ENGAGE is to establish collaboration between the public health, food and veterinary sectors across the European Union (EU) for building and enhancing the use of real-time whole genome sequencing (WGS) and analysis in food safety and public health protection.

We will exploit established collaborations to boost scientific cooperation among the leading food, veterinary and public health institutes across Europe. The project will implement joint “proof of concept” WGS projects to investigate 1) bacteria evolution and genetic diversity driven by genetic exchange, selection, and clonal expansion; 2) epidemiological relationships between the target microorganisms; 3) identification of biologically successful microbial clones; and 4) microbial determinants of virulence, antimicrobial resistance (AMR), and other putative markers in various emerging ‘epidemic’ strains of MDR E. coli and Salmonella having a strong impact in Europe.

BfR parts of the project:

The BfR is involved in five of the eleven work packages (WP): WP 5 Analysis/Benchmarking, WP 6 Proficiency testing, WP 7 Output/outcome, WP8 Training/e-learning and WP9 Workshops.

Project partners:

  • Technical University of Denmark, Denmark (coordination)
  • Public Health England, UK
  • Animal and Plant Health Agency, UK
  • National Institute of Public Health - National Institute of Hygiene benelog GmbH & Co. KG, Poland
  • National Veterinary Research Institute, Poland
  • Instituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Venez, Italy
  • Instituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Regioni Lazio e Toscana, Italy


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