Molecular Testing of Mastitis Pathogens

Above: Some of the research team at the dairy

Fast Facts


Client: Gardiner Foundation
Location: Victoria
When: 2011-2013

Responsibilities: Develop recommendations for field use of a new, PCR mastitis test

Project description

The need:  In 2011 molecular tests for mastitis pathogens were becoming commercially available in Australia. These tests have significant advantages over identifying bacteria via milk cultures: they are fast, screen for several different bacteria, and do not require the bacteria to be alive. However care needs to be taken when acting on test results as the presence of bacterial DNA does not automatically mean animals are infected. This research was designed to provide veterinarians with clear guidelines about the use and interpretation of a new molecular test for mastitis.

What we did:  The Harris Park Group was contractually responsible for this Gardiner Foundation research project. The project team conducting the field work and analysis included Drs John Penry (Project Leader) and John Morton. The outputs were decision pathways for use on farm by advisers and farmers.