20th February, 2017, New Delhi
Letter of Agreement (LOA) between ICAR and CDC Atlanta through CDC India was signed by Dr. T. Mohapatra, Secretary DARE & DG, ICAR and Dr. Kayla Laserson, Country Director, Division of Global Health Protection Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) India at ICAR, Headquarters, Krishi Bhavan today. Shri C. Roul, Additional Secretary, DARE & Secretary ICAR, Dr. H. Rahman, Deputy Director General (Animal Science), ICAR and other dignitaries were present on this occasion.
Dr Mohapatra and Dr Laserson stressed the need for strengthening inter-sectoral cooperation by strengthening work force training and laboratory strengthening. Dr. Mohapatra advised to organize the launching of this project by inviting all stakeholders viz. ICMR, DADF, Public & Pvt. Sector, State Animal Husbandry Departments and other sister organizations working for animal health for giving their input and effective implementation of this project agreement for better output.
Dr. H. Rahman briefed about the importance of this agreement especially pertaining to zoonotic diseases like anthrax in livestock and multifactorial etiology based mastitis in livestock as well as antimicrobial resistance shown by these pathogens.
The agreement is on the project entitled, “Countrywide surveillance for Anthrax in livestock and mastitis in cattle for protecting and improving health globally: Building and Strengthening public health impact, systems capacity.”
The cooperation aims to establish high quality research, capacity building and surveillance on important infectious diseases of veterinary public health importance with high epidemic potential such as anthrax and mastitis pathogens showing antimicrobial resistance to define and understand the disease prevalence in India. This will help to establish and further strengthen One Health surveillance network with an aim towards countrywide network of laboratories
Anthrax is dreaded disease and mostly exist in per acute form leading to death of animals. The causative agent Bacillus anthracis in contact with air causes spore formation which are resistant to high temperatures and survive for more than 50 years. These organisms can also be used for biological warfare, so the importance of such zoonotic pathogens is more crucial for identification through effective surveillance throughout the country. He also stated that human anthrax is prevalent in some hot spots of the country like Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal and Assam.
In dairy sector mastitis is considered as one of the costliest disease in terms of the heavy economic losses incurred by the farmers, especially sub-clinical and chronic mastitis which destroy the complete udder tissue.
(Source: Animal Science Division, ICAR)