Ribbon-cutting held for Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Lab

BROOKINGS, S.D. (WNAX) – The ribbon cutting ceremony was held for the new Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Lab at South Dakota State University on Friday. The new facility protects food safety and supports research, diagnostics and studies with respect to animal diseases in the state and region. Lieutenant Governor Larry Rhoden says as a livestock producer he knows how critical sound animal health is for the state’s herds.

SDSU President Barry Dunn says the new lab will expand research and teaching efforts at SDSU and help in the prevention of current and emerging diseases in livestock.

Representative Lee Qualm was instrumental securing state funding for the project and says it’s critical for the future of the industry.

South Dakota State Veterinarian Dr. Dustin Oedekoven (oh-dee-coh-vin) says the lab runs nearly 500,000 tests annually. It is also part of the National Animal Health Laboratory Network, which helps detect significant animal diseases and keep commerce flowing if an outbreak occurs.

The Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Lab in Brookings also serves the region and assisted poultry farms affected by the 2015 avian influenza by testing for other states during the outbreak.  The lab cost about $45 million.