Biodiversity Informatics and Technology Exchange f.. (BITES)
Biodiversity Informatics and Technology Exchange for Snakebite management
Start date: Dec 15, 2013,
End date: Dec 14, 2017
"India is a global hotspot for snakebite mortality, yet management of this significant public health issue requires substantial improvement. Many problems arise from lack of knowledge of the biology of biting species, and much remains to be learned about taxonomy, distribution, and venom characteristics of species such as Russell’s viper (widely considered to be the most dangerous snake in the world). This project will address four main research areas with fundamental gaps in knowledge, to provide a basis for subsequent improvement in clinical treatment and antivenin formulation. The project will synergistically combine EU experts in taxonomy and barcoding of venomous snakes (Bangor; SGN), proteomics of snake venom (CISC, SGN), and transcriptomics of venom glands (Bangor, CSIC, SGN) with corresponding centres of activity in India, including taxonomy and phylogeography at IISC (Bangalore), snake venom proteomics at Sastra (Tamil Nadu), transcriptomics and antivenomics at Tezpur (Assam). Involving both early-stage and experienced researchers, this project will address priorities such as identification of the species responsible for bites in the north-eastern region, where the so-called “Big Four” species (against which antivenin is currently raised in India) are mostly absent, as well as establishing the basis for reference collections of species and their venoms. Several workshops will be run in India to disseminate best practice, training in taxonomic and ""omic"" technology and analyses among early researchers. In turn, Indian partners will second experienced and early-stage staff to the EU for longer-term training in state-of-the-art techniques (such as next-generation approaches to transcriptomics and genomics). This partnership will also form the basis for further collaborative applications to address wider issues such as the use of venom components as drug leads, the evolution of snake venom, as well as application of knowledge gained for snakebite management."
Get Access to the 1st Network for European Cooperation