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Central Veterinary Laboratory - Pathology

Dublin Regional Veterinary Laboratory 


Clinical Chemistry

Head of section: Dr. Paul Collery SSRO
Phone 01 6157203
Fax 01 6157449

Clinical Chemistry Section (formerly Biochemistry) performs metal (macro, trace and heavy) analyses on animal blood and tissues, and also measures metabolites and enzyme activity in serum to diagnose economic animal diseases or animal exposure to environmental pollution. In addition to providing specialist support to the RVLs, the Section liaises with other State agencies such as the FSAI and the EPA to provide expert advice in relation to food safety and environmental animal health. Because of its expertise in the study of toxicological and production-related diseases, the Section was central to the large inter-Agency investigations in Askeaton and Silvermines in the 1995 to 2002 period.

The Section has been involved in several other investigations of animal health problems with an environmental component in counties Kerry, Kildare and Kilkenny. In 2006, it contributed to the investigation of a mining environmental pollution incident in Co. Tipperary.

Clinical Chemistry Reference Ranges (pdf 635Kb) 



 Head of section: Dr. Maire McElroy SRO
Phone 01 6157217
Fax 01 6157226

The Histopathology Section is responsible for the preparation of tissue slides for microscopic evaluation by pathologists - both within the Section and in the six RVLs. As the EC National Reference Laboratory for Transmissable Spongiform Encephalopathies (TSEs, i.e. BSE, scrapie, etc.), Histopathology Section is responsible for the confirmatory diagnosis of all suspect TSE cases identified in the State. Additional responsibilities assigned to the Section under the ECTSE legislation (999/2001) include the approval and ongoing monitoring of private laboratories carrying out rapid screening tests for TSEs and the maintenance of an archive of TSE-positive tissues.

The latter is used to support quality control of TSE screening tests - as well as local and international research projects. Staff in the Section have been involved in a number of EU and DAF-funded research projects. These include a study of clinical signs of BSE in Ireland, a survey of TSE in non-ruminant species, investigation for evidence of BSE infection in scrapie-positive sheep, establishment of the lesion profile of BSE in Irish cases, and a study of brainstem cell populations in TSE cases.

 An additional project which commenced in 2007, involves molecular characterisation of TSE strains in Irish BSE cases.