Various pathological, histological, bacteriological, mycological, parasitological, virological, serological, and molecular diagnostic tests are performed in the Veterinary and Food Laboratory for the laboratory diagnosis of animal diseases. In addition, the susceptibility of microorganisms to antimicrobials is determined to enable veterinarians to use antibacterial agents responsibly and to make reasonable treatment decisions.
All investigations of animal diseases and the related professional competence are concentrated in the Tartu laboratory. In addition to conducting laboratory tests, it is possible to obtain advice from our specialists on the interpretation of test results, as well as on issues related to laboratory diagnostics of animal diseases in general.
Pursuant to the Veterinary Organisation Act, the Veterinary and Food Laboratory has the authority to conduct investigations on national infectious animal disease control programmes and to diagnose dangerous and especially dangerous animal diseases.
The Veterinary and Food Laboratory is constantly prepared to diagnose particularly dangerous infectious animal diseases such as foot-and-mouth disease, avian influenza, Newcastle disease, African swine fever, classical swine fever, and bluetongue. In case of suspicion of especially dangerous infectious animal diseases, the Veterinary and Food Laboratory ensures a 24-hour reception of research material and, if necessary, it can perform tests 24 hours a day.
The Veterinary and Food Laboratory also has a constant readiness to examine dangerous infectious animal diseases such as rabies, brucellosis, anthrax, transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, and many others. In the field of zoonotic pathogens of animal origin, the Veterinary and Food Laboratory co-operates with the Health Board.
Services to the sector
In addition to performing national tasks, the Veterinary and Food Laboratory provides services to field veterinarians, animal clinics, animal owners, and other interested parties.
Cooperation with other laboratories
The Veterinary and Food Laboratory has an extensive international network of contact laboratories to which samples can be sent in cases where the necessary testing methods are not available on site or where there is a need to clarify or confirm an existing diagnosis. Most of our international partners are either reference laboratories or national institutes for the diagnosis of animal diseases.
The research of the Veterinary and Food Laboratory is mostly carried out in cooperation with national research institutions such as the Estonian University of Life Sciences and the University of Tartu or with international partners.