IZSVe - IT
Core Partner, BSL3, EU
IZSVe is a governmental organization part of the network of the Istituti Zooprofilattici Sperimentaliin Italy. It provides scientific and technical support to the Central and Regional governments regarding animal health and welfare, veterinary public health, environmental protection and food safety. Within the framework of its national and international engagements, IZSVe is frontline involved in the surveillance and characterization of viral agents with animal and public health impacts, such as influenza viruses.
The Institute employs almost 600 people, including veterinarians, biologists, chemists, technicians and administration staff. The IZSVe laboratories are organized in a central lab plus local labs present in different provinces of the North east part of Italy. IZSVe laboratories provide from basic clinical diagnostic services (pathological, bacteriological, serological and toxicological assays) to specialised diagnostics using biomolecular, virological, parasitological and immunohistochemical techniques. The results of these analyses are useful for epidemiological studies and for monitoring the animal health status. IZSVe actively participates to conceptualization of national and regional monitoring, treatment, and eradication programmes for animal diseases, as well as to emergency, livestock and biosafety management programmes. Within the framework of its national and international engagements, IZSVe is frontline involved in the surveillance and characterization of viral agents with animal and public health impacts, such as influenza viruses in the animal reservoirs, lyssaviruses and flaviviruses in animals and vectors (i.e. West Nile, Usutu, Tick-Borne Encephalitis, Chikungunya, Dengue and Zika Virus).The IZSVe infact hosts 7 national and 7 international reference centres most of which devoted to viral animal diseases.
Over the years, the virology group at IZSVe has stand out as an international reference for research on viral zoonoses through studying the pathogenesis, transmission patterns and the virological factors driving the host-species jump of influenza A viruses, as well as developing novel vaccines and immune-therapies for the prevention and treatment of major viral zoonoses both in the animal reservoirs and human beings (i.e. influenza and rabies). Within this framework, several animal models, including rodents (voles, mice and Syrian hamsters), piglets, ferrets, rabbits and poultry (chickens, turkeys, Peking ducks, quails and pigeons) have been validated and are available at IZSVe. IZSVe virology group conducts extensive research and surveillance activities on AIVs, particularly in North-East Italy, which is one of the most AI-prone areas in Europe. Because of its unique environmental setting (i.e. high poultry density, large wetlands harbouring many resident wild birds and being the cross-road for many migratory birds), this area has faced some of the most devastating AI epidemics in poultry occurred in Europe, with recurrent AIV incursions from wild birds.