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K-State Today

February 9, 2023

Kenneth Burton and Chad Mire to present Division of Biology Seminar

Submitted by Division of Biology

Kenneth Burton, National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, or NBAF, deputy director, and Chad Mire, Foreign Arthropod-Born Animal Disease Research Unit, will present "Standing Up Operations, Science, and Research for the USDA National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF)" as part of the Division of Biology Seminar Series at 3:30 p.m. Monday, Feb 13, in 221 Ackert Hall.

Burton will present information on the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility's standup, operations and future science and research plans, and Mire will present an overview of the Foreign Arthropod-Borne Animal Disease Research Unit — one of the two new research units standing up at NBAF because of its new capabilities.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is working with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to stand up NBAF in Manhattan. This state-of-the-art facility will be a national asset that helps protect the nation's agriculture, farmers and citizens against the threat and potential impact of serious animal diseases.

NBAF will replace the Plum Island Animal Disease Center, or PIADC, a biosafety level-3 facility in New York that is 68 years old. Currently, USDA's Agricultural Research Service, or ARS, and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, or APHIS, conduct foreign animal disease research, training and diagnostics at PIADC. ARS and APHIS will transfer their missions from PIADC to NBAF and will operate the facility jointly.

NBAF will have biosafety level-2 and 3 laboratories and is the first facility in the United States with biosafety level-4, or BSL-4, containment capable of housing large livestock. NBAF's BSL-4 containment laboratories require the highest level of safety protocols and equipment so scientists can safely study and diagnose a variety of high-consequence animal pathogens.

NBAF's 48-acre campus is adjacent to Kansas State University's Biosecurity Research Institute and College of Veterinary Medicine and next door to the Kansas Department of Agriculture. In addition, Manhattan is on the western edge of the Animal Health Corridor, which has the highest concentration of animal health companies in the world.

If you would like to visit with Burton or Mire, contact Sonny Lee at leet1@k-state.edu