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Epidemiology and risk analysis

Gyrodactylus salaris
Gyrodactylus salaris

We have extensive experience investigating the detection and spread of endemic, exotic and emerging diseases using risk analysis and other models.

We do this work to understand more about how diseases affect large numbers of animals in one place, at one time. In addition, our investigations inform how disease outbreaks might be handled and directly support aquatic animal health policy-making.

Working closely with the Fish Health Inspectorate, we have applied risk-based approaches to disease surveillance to ensure that resources are focused on rivers and farms where diseases are most likely to occur. Other modelling approaches have been used to assess the likely spread of disease through live fish movements and other routes.

Our investigations have explored factors influencing the occurrence and distribution of endemic diseases (eg, proliferative kidney disease) and new diseases (eg, red mark syndrome).

Our risk work has focused on assessing the threat of exotic parasites and pathogens. The salmon parasite, Gyrodactylus salaris, has been the focus of recent work. We have extended the risk-based approach to investigate disease emergence and the impact of climate change on disease threats.

Our epidemiological and modelling approach is robust, systematic and transparent, and helps to generate the evidence-base needed for effective decision-making.

For more about epidemiology and this risk analysis work, please contact ed.peeler@cefas.co.uk.

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Last Modified: 27 April 2014