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ARS Home » Research » Research Project #436773

Research Project: National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility Scientists Project

Location: Research Programs

2021 Annual Report

Obj. 1. Develop CCHF virus diagnostic tests for early detection and surveillance of Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever Virus including development of viral detection methods for ticks and viral detection methods for cattle, sheep, and goats. Comp. 1: Problem Statement 1A Obj. 2. Determine mechanisms of CCHF transmission including development of CCHF tick and animal infection methods and CCHF tick-animal transmission models. Comp.1: Problem Statement 1A

The goal of National Program 103 (NP 103), Animal Health, is to protect and ensure the safety of the Nation’s agriculture and food supply through improved disease detection, prevention, and control. Basic and applied research approaches will be applied to solve animal health problems of high national priority. The National Bio and Agro Defense Facility (NBAF) will take over the mission of the Plum Island Animal Disease Center (PIADC) and be the ARS lead facility for Foreign Animal Disease research. NBAF will 1) provide solutions to problems associated with the control, eradication, and recovery of foreign and emerging diseases, and 2) maintain a portfolio of expertise that will allow ARS to rapidly respond to new and unforeseen disease threats.

Progress Report
A new research program focusing on Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) disease ecology and pathogenesis was started at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the University of Texas Medical Branch and the University of California Davis One Health Institute. ARS researchers at the location had a role in the standup of the research program. Due to the vacant Research Lead position, these programs were stood up using Work Force Development Funds and project funds. Three postdoctoral research associates were hired and trained at their respective institutes working in Biosafety Level 4 facilities, establishing ecological studies in endemic regions of Africa. Despite the SARS-Cov2 pandemic, the research project in West and East Africa (Sierra Leone and Tanzania) has been very successful, collecting thousands of ticks and blood samples from livestock (cattle, goats) in areas with high risk of CCHF. Samples will be shipped to the CDC for CCHF testing.