What is the European Union Reference Laboratory for peste des petits ruminants?

The European Union Reference Laboratory for peste des petits ruminants (EURL-PPR) is part of the research unit ASTRE of CIRAD, based in Montpellier, France.

The duties of the EURL-PPR are:

1)      To ensure liaison between National Reference Laboratories (NRLs) for PPR and to provide optimal methods for PPR diagnosis, specifically by:

  • Typing and genomic characterization, phylogenetic analysis (relationship with other strains of the same virus) of viruses and storing strains of PPR viruses;
  • Maintaining an up-to-date collection of strains and isolates of PPR viruses and sera;
  • Using, promoting and disseminating validated diagnostic methods to NRLs
  • Organising and operating periodic inter-laboratory comparative trials and external quality assurance exercises on the diagnosis of PPR;
  • Carrying out research studies with the objective of developing improved methods of disease control;
  • Advising the Commission on scientific aspects related to PPR and, in particular, on the selection and use of PPR virus vaccine strains.

2)      To support the functions of National Reference Laboratories for the diagnosis of PPR, in particular by:

  • Storing and supplying standard sera and other reference reagents to NRLs;
  • Assisting actively in the diagnosis of diseases in connection with the suspicion and confirmation of PPR outbreaks in Member States.

3)      To provide information and carry out further training, in particular by:

  • Facilitating the provision of training, refresher courses and workshops for the benefit of NRLs;
  • Participating in international forums concerning, in particular, analytical methods for PPR and their implementation;
  • Collaborating with the relevant competent laboratories in non-EU countries where PPR is prevalent;
  • Reviewing the OIE's recommendations laid down in the Terrestrial Animal Health Code and in the Manual of Diagnostic Tests and Vaccines for Terrestrial Animals;
  • Keeping abreast of developments in the epidemiology of PPR.

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