Sarah Thomson 

Sarah Thomson

Institution: Moredun Research Institute

Epidemiology of cryptosporidiosis in farm livestock, assessment of zoonotic risk and development of control strategies

Cryptosporidiosis is a parasitic disease which infects animals and humans. This disease is of great importance to the UK livestock industry as Cryptosporidium infected animals may suffer from diarrhoea, loss of appetite and dehydration leading to poor growth rates and, in severe cases even death. Some species of Cryptosporidium may be passed from animals to humans by direct contact or indirectly, often through contaminated water.

This study will examine livestock in Scotland to determine which species and strains of Cryptosporidium infect cattle, some of which may be infective to humans. This information may identify certain strains that are linked to more severe cases of disease in livestock. The study will also look at the methods farmers currently use to prevent and control the disease and determine which are the most effective. Information arising from this project will be communicated to farmers to help encourage best practise in prevention and control of cryptosporidiosis in livestock

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