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Microbiology is the study of micro-organisms, including those that are causing infectious diseases. It comprises several disciplines specialising in different types of micro-organisms: viruses (virology), bacteria (bacteriology), fungi (mycology and parasites (parasitology).
Public health microbiology is a cross-cutting area that spans the fields of human, animal, food, water, and environmental microbiology, with a focus on human health and disease. Public health microbiology laboratories play a central role in detection, monitoring, outbreak response, and providing scientific evidence to prevent and control infectious diseases.

It is of great importance to ensure sufficient microbiology capacity within the EU/EEA and to detect and characterise infectious agents in a timely and accurate manner in order to manage infectious threats. ECDC fosters the development of such capacity by encouraging cooperation between expert and reference laboratories. Technically, the ECDC’s Public Health Microbiology Programme encompasses all laboratory cooperation activities and microbiology projects of ECDC.
Read more about the Public Health Microbiology Programme




Expert opinion on whole genome sequencing for public health surveillance

Strategy to harness whole genome sequencing to strengthen EU outbreak investigations and public health surveillance
This document sets out the ECDC vision for using whole genome sequencing (WGS) technology within the context of its agreed strategy and roadmap for integrating typing data into EU level surveillance and cross-border outbreak assessment over the next five years.

Read the Expert opinion on whole genome sequencing for public health surveillance



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