Information about Research on Zoonoses

The term zoonosis derives from the Greek words zoon (creature) and nosos (illness). Zoonoses are infectious diseases caused by bacteria, parasites, fungi, prions or viruses, and they can be transmitted between animals and humans. Transmission is possible by direct contact, living vectors like ticks or mosquitoes, or food of animal origin, e. g. dairy products, eggs or meat. Zoonoses include both well-known and newly emerging infectious diseases. Due to rapid world population growth, increasing mobility, intensive animal husbandry and climate change, the study of is zoonoses becoming increasingly important.

Universities, federal institutes as well as specialized research centers are involved in zoonoses research in Germany. A great variety of working groups, single projects and large networks exist in parallel. Therefore close collaboration between natural scientists of all fields is particularly important to ensure a broad exchange of knowledge and experiences.

The main foci of research are:

  • isolation and characterization of zoonotic agents
  • development and validation of infection models
  • epidemiological studies of zoonotic agents
  • mechanisms of pathogenesis
  • diagnosis of zoonoses
  • immune response, immunity and development of vaccines
  • therapeutics and approaches to therapy
  • methods of preventing and controlling zoonotic infections
  • development of early warning systems
  • design and application of risk analysis models
  • risk analyses


„Wie man sich das in der Zoonosenforschung vorstellt“

Prof. Dr. Jonas Schmidt-Chanasit über die Kooperation zwischen Human- und Tiermedizin und die Entdeckung eines neuen Borna-Virus

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Einblick in die Datenbank der Zoonosenplattform

Beispiel: Mitgliederverteilung