Partner 1 – Centre de coopération internationale en recherche pour le développement (CIRAD)
CIRAD, Montpellier, France, is the national reference laboratory for serological diagnosis of bluetongue and is in charge of the coordination of the national surveillance network for Culicoides in France since 2000 (160 traps over mainland France and Corsica, operating all year on weekly or monthly basis). Bluetongue (BT) has been studied at CIRAD since more than a decade, first on the African continent and more recently in the Mediterranean basin (France, Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria) because of the expansion of C. imicola, an afrotropical vector, into Europe and the BTV-8 outbreaks in western Europe. Cirad participates actively in communicating to the general audience on bluetongue related topics through a website http://bluetongue.cirad.fr/ and Cirad researchers participate to national and European expert committees on bluetongue. Research activities developed at Cirad on bluetongue disease focus on: (a) Virology and vaccinology with the development of new types of vaccines mainly based on the Capripoxvirus as vectors (Virology Research Unit), (b) Developing tools (molecular and morphological) to help identifying Culicoides species; assessing bionomics and vector competence of Culicoides vector species in France (Entomology Research Unit), (c) Understanding spatial and temporal dynamics of Culicoides populations; modeling R0 maps for Culicoides-borne diseases (Epidemiology Research Unit).