The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) funds a project for technical and scientific cooperation to improve the diagnosis and control of the foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in Nigeria. Sciensano helps to improve the preparedness and capability for FMD diagnosis in Nigeria and supports the National Veterinary Institute (NVRI) and the Veterinary Service of Nigeria to control FMD in a sustainable way.
The OIE Twinning Project seeks capacity building via a technical and scientific collaboration guided by Sciensano, an OIE Reference Centre, to strengthen the skills, competencies and abilities of the collaborators of NVRI for the FMD diagnosis and sustainable support of the Veterinary Service in controlling FMD.
The project has nine main objectives:
- to improve the quality of existing FMD diagnostics;
- to introduce new FMD diagnostic technology;
- to implement the principals of quality control and quality assurance (QC/QA);
- to introduce laboratory biosafety and biosecurity procedures and procedures for safe sample shipment;
- to enhance the knowledge on FMDV circulation in Nigeria;
- to introduce in vitro FMD vaccine quality control and post-vaccination monitoring;
- to sustain the progress made in the laboratory and in the support of the Veterinary Service;
- to transfer the diagnostic technology of Sciensano by organising a technical FMD laboratory workshop in Nigeria for this region of Africa;
- to prepare the NVRI to evolve later on towards the level of OIE Reference Laboratory.
To realise these objectives, Sciensano and NVRI collaborate in the areas of information, training, diagnosis and disease control.
- Information: two-way communication on technical and scientific information, such as diagnostic protocols and FMDV strain identification necessary within the limits of confidentiality.
- Diagnosis, training and disease control:
- Training of NVRI staff at Sciensano on virus and antibody isolation and characterisation, laboratory biosafety procedures and safe sample shipment, basics of quality control and quality assurance
- A technical workshop in Nigeria for transferring the diagnostic technologies and the knowledge to representatives of FMD laboratories from regional countries
- Samples collected in Nigeria are analysed in parallel in Belgium and Nigeria