Organizacion Mundial de Sanidad Animal

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The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) hosted the Symposium on Animal Genomics for Animal Health at its Paris headquarters (inglés)

Jointly organised by ARS-USDA (Agricultural Research Service- United States Department of Agriculture), INRA (Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, France), BBRSC (Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, United Kingdom) and IABS (International Association for Biological Standardisation), with the support of the European Commission (EADGENE).   October 23 to 25, 2007

Paris, 25 October 2007 - The symposium provided the opportunity for the world leaders in the field of animal genomics and animal health to come together and plan new directions to change the way animal health research is approached, with the availability of several livestock full genomic sequences.

Recent advances in biotechnology and genomics of livestock present unique opportunities to address global animal health challenges through multidisciplinary scientific collaborations.

The highlights of the meeting were mainly concerning the interactions between the genomes of the pathogens and their hosts, in order to improve the ability to control and eliminate diseases through the discovery of highly effective diagnostics, vaccines and biotherapeutics, and the promise of being able to select livestock with desirable health traits.

Vaccination, when available, is undoubtedly the most cost-effective means of preventing and controlling, and even eradicating infectious diseases of man and animals, as exemplified by the foreseen eradication of rinderpest.

Vaccination will help to reach many of the objectives of the United Nations “Millenium Development Goals report – 2005”, especially in the light of the livestock revolution.
It is expected an increase of 50% in the world demand for meat in the next 15 years. One billion people will shift from poverty to the middle class, becoming meat consumers.

One approach could lie in the selection of animals that respond well to vaccination.

In fact, there is a growing trend to orient livestock selection not only toward production, but also toward animal health objectives by selecting animals resistant to certain diseases.

Keeping this in mind it is becoming urgent to maintain the biodiversity of domestic animals, and the World Organisation for Animal Health fully supports the initiative of its sister Organisation, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations to promote and preserve the diversity of domestic breeds in both developed and developing countries.

There are also many applications of animal genomics in animal welfare. Whenever a disease is prevented, it has a direct positive impact on animal welfare; animal health being a key component of animal welfare.

Two hundreds and sixty five worldwide experts participated in this first important meeting, paving the way for the future.

The proceedings of this meeting will be published in the collection of the International Association for Biological Standardisation.

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