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IBERS to Host Welsh Bovine TB Research Centre
Oct 12 2018 Read 1268 Times
Aberystwyth University is to house a new Centre of Excellence for Bovine Tuberculosis, bringing together international expertise with the aim of eradicating the cattle disease in Wales.
Announcing the development at Senedd in Cardiff Bay (Oct 3) Welsh Government Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Planning and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths, said: “Bovine TB is the most pressing animal health challenge for Wales today. It’s had a devastating impact on the national cattle herd and the farming community, while being a significant burden on public finances. The Centre of Excellence could be a real ‘game changer’ in the fight against bovine TB and is part of our long-term aim of eradicating the disease for good.”
The new centre, which will be based within the University’s Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), represents an investment of £3.6m and will be led by Professor Glyn Hewinson, a world-renowned expert on Bovine Tuberculosis, who is currently Lead Scientist for Bovine TB at the Animal and Plant Health Agency and has led research into the disease for more than 20 years.
Professor Elizabeth Treasure, Vice-Chancellor of Aberystwyth University, said: “We are delighted to be establishing a Centre of Excellence for Bovine TB in Aberystwyth University with the support of Welsh Government. The economic and emotional cost of bovine TB to rural communities can be devastating and the appointment of Professor Hewinson, with his wealth of experience working in disease control, represents a highly significant investment as we seek new approaches to tackling this long-standing problem.”
The centre is backed by Sêr Cymru II, a programme aimed at growing and developing academic research expertise in Wales. It is funded by Welsh Government, the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, participating Welsh Higher Education institutions and the European Regional Development Fund.
Speaking about his appointment, Professor Hewinson said: “I am delighted and honoured to be appointed to a Ser Cymru Research Chair at Aberystwyth University, leading a new Centre of Excellence for Bovine TB. The centre will explore fundamental aspects of Bovine TB science, supporting efforts to tackle this devastating disease, in collaboration with both Government and industry organisations.”
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