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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

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Infectious Diseases and Public Health

French National Institute for Agricultural Research - University of Tours (France)


Situated in INRAE Val de Loire Research Center in the Loire valley, the unit « Infectiology and Public Health » (ISP) is a joined research unit between INRAE and the University of Tours. ISP hosts 160 staff members, including 80 researchers, in 10 research teams and core facilities such as the International Center for Bacterial Pathogens (CIRM-BP) and the team "Imaging and infectiology". Teams are located on the INRAE campus in Nouzilly (25 km from Tours) or the Tours faculties of Pharmacy and Medicine campus.

ISP research activities are dedicated to the understanding of the interactions taking place between the host and pathogens: host can be a human or a farm animal and pathogens are bacteria, viruses or parasites that represent threats for animal and/or human health as well as economic burden. Our research is also well in line with the “One Health” concept promoting an integrated view of the animal-human-ecosystem interface to better tackle the pathogen threat. ISP missions respond to two societal demands: prevent and cure infectious diseases and limit drug use.

ISP concentrates a large panel of complementary expertise on pathophysiology of infectious diseases in farm animals – chickens, ruminants,  swine- or model animals, thanks to its unique environment. Indeed, ISP is close to the:

  • Infectiology platform (PFIE), a bio-contained animal facility for large animals, unique in France and one of the 15 available in Europe. Together, PFIE and ISP form the “Tours Animal Heath Center”;
  • Phenotyping and in/eX vivo Imaging from ANImal to Molecule (PIXANIM) platform: another remarkable facility able to run surgery and imaging (CT scan and NMR) on small ruminants or pigs under conditions similar to those proposed in hospitals.

At the local level, ISP coordinates the Infectious Diseases Research Federation (FéRI), gathering 300 people working on infectious diseases.
At the international level, in addition to numerous collaborations established by the researchers, ISP coordinates the:

  • VetBioNet research infrastructure project (2017-22) that is financed by the European H2020 funding framework and involves 30 international partner organisations;
  • program IDOH, the first European Erasmus Mundus master of Sciences teaching the One Health concept in the fight against infectious diseases.