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Exploring the richness of Mycobacterium bovis strain diversity to decipher the epidemiology of bovine tuberculosis ecology


The specific objectives of this work are to:- Use the unique archive of M. bovis isolates held within the Animal and Plant Health Agency, from cattle and also fromspatially linked cattle and badgers from the randomised badger control trial (RBCT)- Generate whole genome sequence from representative samples over space and time from within the regions in Englandand Wales where cattle are endemically infected with M. bovis.- Use phylogenetic and phylogeographical analysis to identify patterns of spread of bTB locally (between and within cattleand badgers) and nationally, in particular to provide a finer grain to the genotype analyses that currently inform the controlprogramme (Figure 1).- Develop new methods for the use of WGS to improve the epidemiological tracing of bTB- Use the genetic data from these studies to test hypotheses regarding the critically important issue of on-farm persistenceof bTB.

Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA)
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