The New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDA) Animal Health Diagnostic Laboratory?s (AHDL) objectives in participating in this project are to obtain the equipment, supplies, and personnel as well as the training in standardized testing methodologies to increase the AHDL?s testing capabilities in response to an event of a feed or drug adulteration. By participating in this program, the AHDL will improve the capabilities to function as a Vet-LIRN laboratory and to respond to potential emergency outbreaks or contaminated feed/drug incidents. The AHDL will also improve its ability to generate data for antimicrobial resistance studies in veterinary pathogens through increased submission of samples collected from dogs. In participating in the Vet-LIRN programs, the AHDL will be participating in sample analyses, methods development, animal food/drug defense assignments, bacterial isolates, antimicrobial susceptibility studies, training, and proficiency testing when available. The laboratory will provide surge capacity as needed by the Vet-LIRN/FDA in the event of a large-scale microbiological or chemical terrorism or natural pathogenic organism outbreak event affecting animal food or drug products. The AHDL will share results of method development, method validation and matrix extension studies with VPO and network laboratories as determined by the VPO. The AHDL will also provide bacterial isolates for antimicrobial susceptibility studies including sharing the susceptibility data and relevant metadata.
Serving a densely populated state with a diverse population of pets and livestock, the Animal Health Diagnostic Laboratory (AHDL) at the New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDA) has a responsibility to safeguard the health and well-being of not only the animal population within New Jersey?s borders but also the health of the human population. When pet feed or animal food is contaminated, human health may become compromised either through consumption of contaminated meat or by consuming ingredients used in both animal and human food products. Similarly, when veterinary pathogens develop antimicrobial resistance, they could transfer resistance to human pathogens and vice versa jeopardizing public health and well-being. The equipment, supplies, and personnel provided by this grant as well as the training in standardized testing methodologies will improve the capabilities of the AHDL to function as a Vet-LIRN laboratory, and respond to potential emergency outbreaks or contaminated feed incidents. It will also improve the AHDL?s ability to generate data for antimicrobial resistance studies in veterinary pathogens through increased submission of samples collected from dogs.