Search goes on for fluke vaccine

New effective vaccines to counteract liver fluke in livestock are the objective of a research project in UCD.

According to researcher Grace Mulcahy, by merging recent technological advances in molecular biotechnology, she and her colleagues will gain a deeper understanding of how liver fluke parasites interact with their animal hosts, cattle and sheep.

“We will learn at a molecular level how these parasites invade their hosts, how they control and regulate their immune responses and how this leads to chronic disease, pathogenesis and death.”

Theirs is one of 23 research projects for which over €30m of Government funding to support 100 research positions has been announced.

Funding over a four to five year period for each project will range from €500,000 to €2.3m.

Another of these projects will investigate the commercial possibilities for seaweed extracts in the animal feed industry. According to researchers John O’Doherty and Torres Sweeney in UCD, “The preventative and therapeutic properties of seaweed has been known since early times.

The objective here is to characterise the molecules in native macroalgae that have health promoting properties, develop the large-scale methodologies to purify them and explore commercial avenues for them in the animal feed industry.”

They say there is an urgent requirement to identify alternatives to the widespread use of antibiotics in veterinary and human medicine which has, over time, selected for a broad spectrum of pathogens that are resistant to antibiotics. “This is of major concern for public health and has resulted on an EU ban on‘in-feed’ antibiotics in animals.”


Lifestyle

Their paths first crossed on the top floor of the library at University College Cork in October 2010 when both were students there so Amy Coleman and Steven Robinson were delighted to retrace their footsteps on their big day.Wedding of the Week: College sweethearts open new chapter

Peter Dowdall reveals why all roads will lead to Tullow in County Carlow on February 1Snowdrop patrol: Why all roads will lead to County Carlow

Lower the volume on regular crawthumping lipservice emanating from much of the body politic to instead focus on specific actions and strategies of real substance — or the lack thereof — and it becomes increasingly obvious with each passing year the State has largely given up on ‘Rural Ireland’ and, in particular, the farming community that was once the bedrock of this nation.Restaurant review: The Thatch and Thyme, Kildorrery, Co Cork

Having adopted a ‘low profile’ for the month of January, The Menu will be kicking out the jams in fine fashion at what promises to be one of the culinary events of the year ahead, an exclusive sake dinner, on February 4, in the serene sanctuary of chef Takashi Miyazaki’s Michelin-starred Ichigo Ichie, in Cork City.The Menu: Upcoming food highlights include exclusive sake dinner and a cooking competition

More From The Irish Examiner