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LinkTADs Report Summary

Project ID: 613804
Funded under: FP7-KBBE
Country: Italy

Final Report Summary - LINKTADS (Linking Epidemiology and Laboratory Research on Transboundary Animal Diseases and zoonoses in China and EU)

Executive Summary:
LinkTADs (Linking Epidemiology and Laboratory Research on Transboundary Animal Diseases and Zoonoses in China and EU) was a three-year initiative funded by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (FP7) to coordinate European and Chinese research on animal disease prevention and control. The fight against animal diseases relies heavily on the research community developing new intervention/control tools and strategies. These could be in the form of new vaccines and diagnostics, or through a better knowledge and understanding of the diseases to prevent their emergence and spread, and improve approaches to surveillance, prevention and control. International collaboration between animal health researchers can speed up relevant advances by bringing together new ideas, technologies, funds, and expertise to solve livestock health challenges, thus optimizing the use of research resources. Therefore, international research coordination plays a key role in the prevention, control, and eradication of animal diseases.
LinkTADs aimed to coordinate research on two of the most important components of the disease prevention control cycle, epidemiology and laboratory diagnostics, between partners in the European Union (EU) and China. It is paramount that these two disciplines are linked and their work coordinated. LinkTADs allowed for the improvement of scientific excellence in the field of animal health and the control of animal diseases through the broad networking of scientific institutions. The coordination activities created a wide-ranging network within the relevant scientific communities and stakeholders, and the systematic establishment of linkages between on-going (and future) animal health research, training programmes, and innovation projects in the veterinary fields of the EU and China. Both sides were able to exchange knowledge and establish collaboration in order to more effectively control animal diseases, including those transmitted to humans (i.e. zoonoses).
The major results can be summarised as follows:
• Report on agreed areas in animal health, food safety and security requiring policy discussion and possible harmonisation between the EU and China.
• A better understanding of the epidemiology and laboratory research achieved through closer collaboration between research institutions. As a result, in the context of twinned European/Chinese research projects, knowledge gaps in the epidemiology/ecology of priority TADS and emerging infectious diseases (EIDs) were identified and filled. Recommendations for the design of risk-based surveillance programmes for endemic, emerging and exotic diseases in domestic and wild animal species were developed. Joint Research Laboratories were established to enhance the control, improve the diagnostic capabilities, and increase the knowledge of infectious animal diseases by heightening joint research activities between China and EU.
• Report on the main findings and recommendations on the identification of research topics on animal infectious diseases (including zoonoses) of common interest for China and the EU, while also suggesting specific practical areas for cooperation on animal infectious diseases between EU and China, and supporting the official policy dialogues on animal diseases and food security between the EU and China.
• Joint project applications and joint peer-reviewed scientific publications of LinkTADs partners.
• The LinkTADs online platform serves as an information portal on EU-China cooperation in the field of animal health beyond the project completion.
• Several capacity building activities have been implemented (short-term visits, exchange programmes and trainings) targeting both young and experienced researchers, strengthening the collaboration between Chinese and European epidemiologists in the long term, and enabling the sustainability of the LinkTADs project beyond its completion.
• Through an in-depth analysis of patenting activities, global trends in animal health research, relevant EU and Chinese programmes, and publishing activities, possible synergies were detected and respective recommendations developed.
• A broad dissemination campaign was carried out in Europe and China contributing to the wider project impact and closer EU-China cooperation in the field of animal health.

Project Context and Objectives:
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Project Results:
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Potential Impact:
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List of Websites:
The consortium’s composition and responsibilities are balanced between 11 European and Chinese partners, incorporating some of the major scientific players in the animal health field in both the EU and China. The consortium is well rounded with the presence of partners with a long history of establishing cross-border cooperation and linking research to policy makers and industry. In addition, the combination of networks and dissemination channels of all the consortium partners represents a powerful tool to disseminate the knowledge and mechanisms generated during the project. Moreover, LinkTADs consortium partners have signed a cooperation agreement with the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) regarding mirroring activities.

The consortium partners are:

• Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) (with Joint FAO/IAEA Programme for Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture and FAO Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD) China)
Contact person: Daniel Beltran-Alcrudo,
• Europa Media Non-profit Ltd. (EM)
Contact person: Gabriella Lovasz,
• Royal Veterinary College (RVC)
Contact person: Dirk Pfeiffer,
• Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherché Agronomique pour le Développement (CIRAD)
Contact person: Julien Cappelle,
• National Veterinary Institute of Sweden (SVA)
Contact person: Frederik Widén,
• Shanghai Veterinary Research Institute (SHVRI)
Contact person: Zhiyong Ma,
• Harbin Veterinary Research Institute (HVRI)
Contact person: Hua-Ji Qiu,
• China Animal Health and Epidemiology Center (CAHEC)
Contact person: Jingli Kang,
• China Animal Disease Control Center (CADC)
Contact person: Shuo Li,
• Sociedade Portuguesa de Inovação (SPI)
Contact person: Kaitlin Dong,
• Huazhong Agricultural University (HZAU)
Contact person: Ling Zhao,

Project coordinator: Daniel Beltran-Alrcudo, FAO
Project website:

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Record Number: 195924 / Last updated on: 2017-03-10