Learning objectives:

    • Describe the physical and molecular structure of astroviruses.
    • Discuss the methods used for diagnosis of astrovirus infection in poultry, and how molecular methods can be used to differentiate astroviruses from other viruses.
    • Describe the types of diseases, pathophysiology and epidemiology of astrovirus infections in the main avian hosts.
    • Discuss the efficacy of the main approaches to control of astrovirus infections in poultry.

Presenter biography:

Victoria graduated from The Queen’s University of Belfast with a BSc in genetics and a Ph.D in molecular biology having investigated the expression and function of a novel gene upregulated during erythropoiesis. After some years as a postdoctoral researcher in Belfast studying the diversity and role of avian astroviruses in runting stunting syndrome of poultry she is now a Molecular Virologist at the government virology research laboratories in Belfast specialising in poultry production diseases at AFBI’s Veterinary Science Division. Her research interests include the molecular characterisation of avian viruses such as chicken astrovirus and avian nephritis virus and the wider metagenomics of viruses associated with growth problems in poultry. She also directs the development and application of novel diagnostics for enteric viruses of poultry and has extensive laboratory experience with viruses, bacteria, nucleic acids and in recombinant protein expression.

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