Veterinary immunology is a branch of immunology dedicated to improving animal health. Like humans, animals also suffer from diseases caused either when organisms try to invade their body, or when their immune system does not function properly. Wild, domestic, and farm animals are commonly exposed to a whole range of dangerous bacteria, viruses and parasites, which threaten their welfare. Animal infections can have widespread effects on human working sectors, like food and agriculture. Moreover, many animal infections can be naturally transmitted across the species barrier to infect humans and vice-versa, a process termed zoonosis. For example, well-studied infections including swine and avian influenza, as well as, malaria and Lyme disease are due to transmission from animals and insects to humans. It is therefore extremely important that these types of diseases are effectively controlled. These measures not only prevent any further transmission to other animals and humans, but also reduce any potentially devastating social and economic consequences.
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