Animal Viruses: Their Transmission and the Diseases They Produce (FutureLearn)

Animal Viruses: Their Transmission and the Diseases They Produce (FutureLearn)
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This course is designed for anyone with a keen interest in the science behind animal viruses and animal diseases. A basic knowledge of biology is desirable, although not required.
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Animal Viruses: Their Transmission and the Diseases They Produce (FutureLearn)
Learn how important animal viruses are transmitted between animals and humans, and understand the diseases they produce. In this free online course, you will learn about animal viruses that affect pets, birds, sheep, cattle, swine and horses, and produce important diseases.

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These animal diseases may cause huge economic losses to farmers and severe emotional distress to animal owners. They may even be transmitted to humans, posing important questions about their spread and control. The course has been developed by a team at Complutense University of Madrid, who are all experienced in teaching virology and infectious diseases at veterinary schools at Madrid and Alfort.


What topics will you cover?

- Introduction to animal viruses, their form and structure (or morphology), and characteristics. Basic information to help understanding viral diseases in animals and humans.

- Faecal-oral transmission: using parvoviruses and canine parvovirosis as an example.

- Open wounds: focusing on rabies and other zoonotic viruses, which produce diseases in both humans and animals.

- Arthropod transmission: viruses that are carried by insects and ticks, and introduced directly into the bloodstream.

- Airborne transmission: such as influenza, which may be transmitted from birds and pigs to humans.

- Other infections difficult to control because they are persistent: produced by viruses that remain in their host, including herpesvirus and retrovirus.


What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

- Describe the differences between DNA and RNA viruses, naked and enveloped viruses, and how this affects variability of the genome and the resistance pattern to physical and chemical agents.

- Compare the transmission requirements for the different ways viruses spread: airborne, through the skin (vertebrate/invertebrate/vector bites) shed in faeces, and how to avoid spread through management, such as quarantine, disinfection, etc.

- Identify which viruses produce the different diseases studied and how they are ascribed to the different families.

- Describe the epidemiology and the transmission routes of the diseases dealt with in the course and collect data for evaluating the origin and spread of rabies, West Nile, Bluetongue and Influenza outbreaks.

- Reflect on the pathogenesis of the different diseases, i.e., how viruses produce each specific disease, and the main clinical signs of the diseases mentioned above.

- Explore which diseases can be transmitted from animals to humans, e.g. zoonosis.

- Reflect on the effects of climate change on the distribution of vectors of viral diseases and, thus, on the spread of arboviral diseases.

- Evaluate which samples and techniques are the most conclusive to diagnose the different viral diseases mentioned above.

- Identify which vaccines are used for the different viral diseases mentioned, their types, and problems that may arise from their use.



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Course Auditing
64.00 EUR
This course is designed for anyone with a keen interest in the science behind animal viruses and animal diseases. A basic knowledge of biology is desirable, although not required.

MOOC List is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.