Diseases naturally transmitted from animals to man termed zoonoses, constitute major public health risks and generate emerging disease problems. Such diseases especially when food-borne have significant social and financial impacts in Europe and need to be addressed across the whole food supply chain. The overall objective of MED-VET-NET is to develop a Network of Excellence for the integration of veterinary, medical and food scientists in the field of food safety at the European Level in order to impro ve research on the prevention and control of zoonoses including food-borne diseases, while considering the public health concerns of consumers and other stakeholders throughout the food chain.
MED-VET-NET includes 8 veterinary and 7 public health institut es from 10 European countries. All partner institutes have national reference laboratory-based responsibilities for the prevention and control of zoonoses. The management structure of the network is based on that of a Virtual Institute and is designed to generate durable interactions between partners. Initially 150 key scientists, with complementary expertises and skills, have been identified from these institutes. Many of them are internationally renown experts in their fields. The network will also ge nerate a cloud of associate institutes contributing to the available expertise and enabling the spreading of excellence. To this end a SME specialising in the dissemination of scientific knowledge is also included in the partnership. Organisational workp ackages will develop activities to enable integration including structured and systematic communications, both electronically and through meetings, and training/continuous professional development. Scientific workpackages will undertake jointly executed research on zoonotic agents selected on the basis of importance in Europe and covering 4 thematic areas: epidemiology, host-microbe interactions, detection and control and risk analysis.
<P>For more information about this project, please visit the <a href="http://ec.europa.eu/research/biosociety/food_quality/projects/011_en.ht…; target="_blank">European Commission Food Quality and Safety in Europe</a> or the <a href="http://www.medvetnet.org/cms/" target="_blank">MED-VET-NET</a> Web sites.