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Vince Cable opens pioneering new facilities to help protect the UK from viruses

October 31, 2014 12:41 PM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

Liberal Democrat Business Secretary Vince Cable today opened the BBSRC National Virology Centre, a state-of-the-art high-containment laboratory at the Pirbright Institute in Surrey.

The pioneering £135m labs will enhance UK capability to prevent and control virus diseases of livestock and viruses that spread from animals to people.

The laboratory uses new, world-leading bio-containment technologies developed specifically for the Pirbright Institute to enable scientists to study diseases such as bluetongue, foot and mouth, avian influenza and African swine fever.

The new facilities will help to predict and prevent outbreaks and develop vaccines in order to protect the UK from devastating diseases that can affect animals and humans and cost the UK economy millions.

Vince said:

"Disease spreading from animals to humans isn't a plot from a Hollywood movie. Its results can have devastating impact on our health and the health of the countryside economy. This new centre will help protect both.

"Investment like this is why we are designing a long-term science and innovation strategy, which will help British science to keep breaking barriers."