Zoopole - Agence Nationale Sécurité Environnementale et Sanitaire
Anses (the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety), Ploufragan-Plouzané laboratory develops research to improve the health and welfare of poultry, rabbit, pig and farmed fish, as well as the safety of food products derived thereof. The laboratory (approx. 200 staff) includes more than 3000 m2 level 2 and level 3 confined laboratories, devoted to all aspects of traditional and molecular microbiology, as well as research units working with epidemiology. The laboratory runs more than 2080 m2 of confined experimental facilities. For poultry, these consist of A2 and A3 isolators and containment rooms (750 m2) allowing for vaccination and infection challenges. The institute also maintains its own Specific Pathogen Free (SPF) breeder flocks for chickens, turkeys and Muscovy ducks, that provide animals for in vivo experiments and embryonated eggs for laboratory work. Finally, the institute has full access to Biogenouest, the Western France life science and environment core facility network, and to high-throughput sequencing expertise.
The Avian and Rabbit Virology-Immunology-Parasitology unit (VIPAC, approx 25 staff) has been studying for many years most major or emerging poultry viruses (classical and molecular virology). The VIPAC unit is currently the French National Reference Laboratory for Avian Influenza and Newcastle Disease, and one of OIE reference laboratories for Infectious bursal disease of chickens and for turkey rhinotracheitis and avian metapneumoviruses.
IBV has been studied in what since became the VIPAC unit since the mid seventies. An extensive experience has been developed in the isolation, antigenic characterization, cell culture adaptation and pathotyping of new IBV isolates. This resulted for instance in the first identifications of the CR88/4-91/793B viruses as a new IBV serotype. In recent years, most efforts have focused on the development of new qRT-PCR tools for the detection of Avian coronaviruses (AvCoV), and on the isolation, genetic characterization and in vivo study of the first European strains of Turkey coronavirus (TCoV).