University of Surrey secures AMR research funding

The University of Surrey’s School of Veterinary Medicine has successfully secured up to €2 million (m) from the European Commission to help tackle the growing threat of foodborne zoonoses to the population’s health, as well as the rise of antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

The award is part of a landmark €9m pan-European project between 41 acclaimed veterinary and medical laboratories and is an example of the ‘One Health’ concept, which recognises that human health is interconnected with the health and welfare of animals and the environment. 

Professor Roberto La Ragione, head of pathology and infectious diseases at the University of Surrey, School of Veterinary Medicine, said: “Recent zoonotic outbreaks, such as avian influenza and the emergence of antibiotic resistance, are perfect examples of why this research is urgently required.

“Transmission of infectious diseases from animals to humans poses a significant threat to public health across the world and it is important that we act now to avoid its devastating effects.”

Dr Dan Horton, lecturer in veterinary virology at the University of Surrey, School of Veterinary Medicine, said:  “This programme will create a research community across Europe with medical, veterinary and environmental health scientists working together. Such an interdisciplinary and international approach is essential to address the threats of zoonotic disease and antimicrobial resistance.

“In putting the programme together we are also very grateful for the support we received from the Higher Education Council for England (HEFCE).”

David Sweeney, director of research and knowledge exchange at the Higher Education Council for England, said: “HEFCE is delighted by this further success for the School of Veterinary Medicine at University of Surrey, which represents another vote of confidence in the UK's world-leading research capability and its potential to help tackle global challenges.”

Professor Vince Emery, senior vice-president global strategy and engagement at the University of Surrey, added: “This is an excellent example of the substantial value and societal impact associated with being able to access trans-European networks through funding programmes within the EU – something we must seek to protect throughout the Brexit negotiation process.”

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