Organisation structure

Department of Epizootiology, Parasitology and Protection of One Health

Scientific research activity

The scientific research activities of the department are aimed at solving current problems of bacterial, viral and parasitic diseases of animals, including zoonoses. Problems related to the occurrence of infectious and parasitic diseases are solved comprehensively – from the analysis of the epizootiological situation on farms and in the field to the isolation of microorganisms and study of infectious agent – host interaction by integrating the classical approaches of detection with the most modern methods of biological and medical research. Another important scientific research activity of the workplace is the protection of production and companion animals from dangerous infectious diseases, which contributes to significant economic growth in breeding and improvement of animal welfare. In the case of zoonoses, the workplace contributes significantly to ensuring public health.
The Workplace of Epizootiology focuses its scientific research activities on the study of bacterial and viral diseases in animals. A part of the team  directs their scientific work towards the epizootiological analysis of viral infections in livestock breeding and wildlife using molecular epizootiology methods. In the diagnosis of infectious diseases, it uses the latest molecular genetic methods, microorganism identification methods, viral genome analysis and genetic typing of viruses. The team pays particular attention to infectious agents such as pestiviruses, PRRSV, PCV2, lyssaviruses, herpesviruses, Campylobacter, and enteric infections that infect animals and humans. In addition to classical methodological approaches, the workplace also uses genomic and proteomic methods.
The priorities of the Workplace of Parasitology in scientific research activities lie in the field of protozoology. They are defined by monitoring the epizootiological and epidemiological relationships of zoonotic protozoan infections and vector-borne protozoans. In the field of helminthology, we analyse the occurrence and spread of filariasis of carnivores as well as helminths in birds of prey in Slovakia and we monitor the occurrence of severe parasitic zoonoses in wild and domestic carnivores (echinococcosis, alveococcosis, toxocariasis) as well as the occurrence of tissue helminthoses (cysticercosis, trichinellosis). In the field of arachnoenthomology, we record changes in arachno entomofauna with an emphasis on diagnosis of hematophagous arthropods in relation to overall globalization changes. We improve method procedures for laboratory detection of ectoparasites.

  • VEGA 1/0709/23: The One Health approach to parasitic infections with zoonotic potential. Implementation: 2023 – 2026. Principal investigator: Assoc. Prof. Gabriela Štrkolcová, DVM, PhD.
  • VEGA 1/0316/23: Zoonotic pathogens of flying vertebrates in the context of one health. Implementation: 2023 – 2025. Principal investigator: prof. Anna Ondrejková, DVM, PhD.
  • VEGA 1/0287/22: Structure and dynamics of foci of tick-borne diseases in urban agglomerations of Slovakia. Implementation: 2022 – 2025. Principal investigator: Blažena Hajdová, Ing., PhD.
  • SK-PL-21-0074: The tick Dermacentor reticulatus and Central Europe - spatiotemporal changes at the beginning of the millennium and epidemiological risks. Implementation: 2022 – 2023. Principal investigator: Assoc. Prof. Branislav Peťko, DVM, DrSc.
    Open scientific community for modern interdisciplinary research in medicine (OPENMED)
    Operational Programme: Integrated Infrastructure. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund.
    Nanoparticles for solving diagnostic and therapeutic problems with COVID19 (NANOVIR)
    Operational Programme: Integrated Infrastructure. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund.
  • Operational Programme: Research and Development, code ITMS 26220120022, IINFEKTZOON – Centre of Excellence for Animal Infections and Zoonoses, Operational. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund and state budget of the Slovak Republic.
  • APVV-19-0440: Emerging zoonotic pathogens transmitted by neglected arthropod species in Slovakia. Implementation: 2020 – 2024. Principal investigator: Assoc. Prof. Branislav Peťko, DVM, DrSc.
  • VEGA 1/0368/21: Toll-like 3 receptor mutations and their influence on cell mediated immune response in relation to susceptibility to selected flavivirus infections in animals. Implementation: 2021 – 2024. Principal investigator: Monika Drážovská, DVM, PhD. 
  • KEGA 005UVLF-4/2022: Implementation of new scientific knowledge in teaching of Epizootiology. Implementation: 2022 – 2024. Principal investigator: prof. Anna Ondrejková, DVM, PhD.
  • KEGA 008UVLF-4/2022: Coronaviral diseases of animals. Implementation: 2022 – 2024. Principal investigator: Boris Vojtek, DVM, PhD.
  • IGA 04/2023: Identification of new strains of CPV-2 in clinically ill dogs. Implementation: 2023 – 2024. Principal investigator: Andrea Pelegrinová, DVM
  • Fellowships for excellent researchers threatened by the war in Ukraine. K09 More effective management and strengthening of funding for research, development and innovation. Project: 09I03-03-V01-00151. Implementation: 2023 – 2026.