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Strengthening the New Zealand combat against Yersiniosis


Funding programme / funding institution: Institute of Environmental Science and Research New Zealand (ESR) - Neuseeland

Grant number: JVH-ESR2001

Project homepage: -

Project description:

Yersinosis is an infectious disease caused by the bacteria Yersinia. Rates of yersiniosis in Aotearoa New Zealand (NZ) are increasing and are high compared to other developed countries. The challenge, however, continues to be the detection and isolation of Yersinia from foods and this limits the ability to identify food sources accurately. It is proposed that NZ and German scientists collaborate and share expertise, knowledge and data in order to improve these methods in order to help with epidemiological studies. This will firstly involve combining genomic data of various Yersinia from NZ and Germany (and other countries) and analyze the data to identify key genetic markers that can distinguish between pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains. This is particularly applicable to strains belonging to Biotype 1A which are often thought of as non-pathogenic but has increasingly been observed in clinical cases in NZ and current methods cannot detect this group. Combining these markers with other method improvements such as phage-technologies being developed by the German partners will also be assessed for applications in NZ. If successful, then further developments and opportunities will be explored in complementary areas such as yersiniosis in animals which causes a significant burden for NZ primary production industries and zoos.

Year 1 1. Collate and interrogate whole genome data for Yersinia between NZ and Germany (and other countries). 2. Use genomic information to identify key genetic marker(s) for pathogenic Yersinia that can be incorporated into a real-time assay. 3. Scientists visit and conferences. Year 2 1. Assess the efficiency of existing phage-technologies to improve the isolation of Yersinia from foods. 2. Proposal development and scientist visit. 3. Present at an NZ conference or equivalent. Year 3 1. Assess the combination of the real-time assay (year 1) with phage technologies (year 2). 2. Co-authored publication 3. Development of potential research proposal for future funding and collaboration.




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