Short Term Missions 2019

One Health EJP Short Term Missions Awarded in 2019

STM 1: Training on the application of source attribution models

Institute: IZSLER, Italy

Place to visit: RIVM, the Netherlands

Duration: 1 week

One Health Thematic Area: Integration of microbiological, risk assessment and surveillance activities

What did Virginia Filipello achieve during her Short Term Mission?

The aim of the visit to the RIVM was to enhance source attribution skills through an ad hoc structured and supervised training, which included exercises with real data and validation of learnt competences. The need for this mission fell within the context of an ongoing process of updating the current routine surveillance of foodborne pathogens with sequence based techniques at IZSLER. IZSLER carries out surveillance plans for the most populous region of Italy, Lombardy, producing large amounts of data. Therefore, the integration of surveillance data with source attribution analyses, could be of great usefulness to improve the positive outcomes on the regional territory. During the mission the participant has been informed on the activities and research ongoing in the hosting institute, with the possibility to interact with other professionals and receive input for future collaborations. During the training the participant received a general introduction on source attribution approaches, with a special focus on source attribution based on microbial subtyping. The Dutch, Hald, Asymmetric Island and STRUCTURE models were included in the training, with particular reference to MLST and MLVA data. The use of WGS in source attribution studies was discussed as well. After each training session, the participant was engaged in consolidating the learnt topics through simulation of attribution with data on Listeria monocytogenes retrieved from public databases. During the staying, it was organised a seminar in which the participant had the possibility to introduce herself and her institute to professionals from the hosting institute to share some highlights about her research activity.

Virginia’s Testimonial:

I am a veterinarian with a PhD in Food Safety, and currently a research scholar in the Lombardy Regional Animal Health and Food Safety Institute (IZSLER), in Italy. The aim of my visit to the RIVM was to enhance my source attribution skills, to become able to integrate surveillance data with source attribution analyses, and improve the outcomes of our activities on the regional territory. This experience has been very enriching and informative. Not only I had the chance to learn hands-on the topic of my mission, but I was also encouraged to interact with the other professionals working at the hosting institution (RIVM). During the staying I was informed on the activities and research ongoing at RIVM, and I had fruitful exchanges with other members of the staff and received input for future collaborations. The training itself has been very educational and focussed on resources most useful in my home institution. Most importantly, I was trained to work independently and with critique. Moreover, the supervisor gave me the possibility to introduce myself and my home institute to colleagues involved in epidemiology of foodborne diseases by organising a seminar in which I presented my current research, which was a genuinely motivating opportunity. I am thoroughly grateful to the OHEJP for having granted such a stimulating and professionalizing experience, and I am confident that the newly learnt competence will advance the positive impact of our ongoing surveillance activities. “

STM 2: Application of advanced epidemiological analytical methods for antimicrobial resistance data in Salmonella in pigs

Institute: VISAVET-UCM, Spain

Place to visit: Centre for Statistics, Hasselt University

Duration: 7 weeks

One Health Thematic Area: Skills development missions …..

STM 3: Training in bioinformatics to study the dynamics of E.coli in laying hens: Training on the application of source attribution models

Institute: VISAVET-UCM, Spain

Place to visit: DTU, Denmark

Duration: 4 weeks

One Health Thematic Area: Skills development missions

STM 4: Skills development focused on development of a framework for reporting outbreak investigations using consumer purchase data

Institute: FHI, Norway

Place to visit: SSI, Denmark

Duration: 1 week

One Health Thematic Area: Skills development missions; Integration of microbiological, risk assessment and surveillance activities; Harmonisation of diagnostics tests, platforms and research tools

What did Solveig Jore acheive during her Short Term Mission?

During this week of short term-mission, we worked on developing a framework for reporting outbreak investigations using consumer purchase data. We also looked at the current and previous use of purchase data and the potential future use. We worked on a description of “best practice” for using purchase data with the aim of harmonising the use of this kind of surveillance data amongst the European countries. In addition, we started drafting an opinion paper describing the method and existing barriers for the benefit of new users and with the hope that these barriers eventually can be overcome.

Solveig’s Testimonial:

Great stay at the Statens Serum Institute (SSI) where the purpose of this scientific mission was to develop a framework for reporting outbreak investigations using consumer purchase data. We looked at the past, present and possible future use of consumer purchase data and aimed at making a description of best practice, which is a  task under WP2 in the NOVA project.  Development of “best practice” for using purchase data is important in order to harmonise  the use of this kind of surveillance data amongst the European countries. In addition, we started drafting an opinion paper describing the method and existing barriers for the benefit of new users and with the hope that these barriers eventually can be overcome, and we worked on developing an opinion paper on the use of consumer purchase data. Statens Serum Institute has previous experience with using consumer purchase data in several outbreak investigations they have done earlier and it was very useful to become a part of their team for a week and work together with the highly skilled epidemiologists on developing the use of this tool further. I really enjoyed the new contacts I got during my short-term mission and the excellent collaboration we had during my stay at the Statens Serum Institute. I highly recommend a stay at both the Institute and Denmark, and particular Copenhagen.

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