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Understanding Diseases in the Environment

Research undertaken in SLS has advanced our understanding of microbial communities in soil and water, leading to new insights on the transmission of infectious diseases and impacts on animal health and welfare.

Cows Predicting and controlling bovine tuberculosis
Bovine tuberculosis (bTB) is one of the major challenges facing the UK livestock industry. It have been estimated to cost the UK in excess of £100million per year, and has a devastating effect on individual farmers and the rural community. Researchers from the University of Warwick have used a variety of mathematical and statistical techniques to understand and predict the spread of this pathogen. Detailed statistical models are able to predict the chance of a positive test with great accuracy, opening the possibility of targeting testing. The mathematical model is more flexible and allows us to ‘experiment’ with a range of control options from vaccination to movement controls. We hope that these scientific methods with provide policy-makers with suitable tools that can inform the management of this disease.