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Bovine ischaemic teat necrosis: combating a severe, emerging disease of economic importance (Liverpool, iCASE award)

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  • Full or part time
    Dr N Evans
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Bovine ischaemic teat necrosis (ITN) is a severe disease of dairy cattle with unknown aetiology and is rapidly increasing in prevalence across the UK. ITN frequently results in entire teat loss for the animal involved making it a substantial animal welfare issue with subsequent animal culling causing substantial economic losses to the UK Dairy industry. Preliminary microbiological analyses are suggestive of a role for treponemes commonly associated with another severe disease of dairy cattle: bovine digital dermatitis. This project will provide training in varied but complementary scientific approaches to analyse an important emerging infectious disease on dairy farms. The student will use high throughput sequencing including global shotgun metagenomic sequencing of entire DNA complements to implicate or rule out the contribution of a range of microorganisms including bacteria, viruses and fungi. Diagnostic pathogen PCR assays will be developed to investigate infection reservoirs. Epidemiological studies will be used to ascertain underlying risk factors. Novel in vitro testing methods will be applied towards control and/or treatment of disease and identify control options. This project is an iCASE studentship and would partner with and include placements at the British Dairy Levy Board (AHDB Dairy). These placements would involve relevant business training and would work towards the development of guidelines to control and treat this severe infectious disease.

For further information see the website:
To apply:
Please submit a full CV and covering letter directly to [Email Address Removed]

Funding Notes

This is a 4 year BBSRC iCASE studentship under the Newcastle-Liverpool-Durham DTP. The successful applicant will receive research costs, tuition fees and stipend (£14,057 for 2015-16). The PhD will start in September 2016. Applicants should have, or be expecting to receive, a 2.1 Hons degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject. EU candidates must have been resident in the UK for 3 years in order to receive full support. There are 2 stages to the application process.


Clegg SR, Blowey RW, Carter SD, Evans NJ. Bovine Ischaemic Teat Necrosis: a further potential role for digital dermatitis treponemes. Vet Rec. Submitted March 2015 (undergoing minor corrections).

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