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Evaluation of the performance of diagnostic tests for diseases of importance in animal health and assessment of their application in the frame of control and surveillance programs

The Quantitative Epidemiology Unit (EPIQ) works for the development and application of quantitative tools to the study the epidemiology of important diseases in public and animal health, including the evaluation of control and eradication programs of animal diseases, the spatial analysis, the molecular epidemiology and the identification of risk factors related to human and animal pathogens, and the evaluation of diagnostic techniques. EPIQ carries out its activities in collaboration with other investigation units of the center and with external entities (governmental institutions and the private sector) and offers them technical advice apart from support in study design and data analysis tasks, and in the development of scientific publications, reports and proposals.


  • Assessment of the sensitivity and specificity of diagnostic tests of routine use and new development using techniques not based on a gold reference (Bayesian latent class models)
  • Design of protocols for the optimization of diagnostic strategies through the modification of cut-offs and other factors of the techniques
  • Determination of the reliability of control, eradication and surveillance programs for animal pathogens (probability of detection at the group level, probability of disease freedom, estimating prevalence-adjusted estimates, etc.)

Start date: January 1st, 2018

Head of the research line:
Álvarez Sánchez, Julio

VISAVET unit involved:

•  Quantitative Epidemiology Unit (EPIQ)