Welcome to the UGA Infectious Diseases Laboratory

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The Infectious Diseases Laboratory was established in 1987 for detection of pathogens in biological samples from domestic animals. In early 1997, the first real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) machine, the Idaho Technology LightCycler, became commercially available. Later that year, IDL established molecular testing for exotic and companion animals and wildlife, using this emerging real-time PCR technology.

In the 1980s, the research wing of the IDL — called the Emerging Diseases Research Group for Companion Animals — developed the original assays for psittacine circovirus (psittacine beak and feather disease virus) and avian polyomavirus. These assays were made available commercially in the 1980s and originally licensed in the early 1990s to an outside vendor.

Our staff was trained in-depth at the Idaho Technology facilities in Salt Lake City, Utah, and the two tests were adapted for LightCycler tecnhology. These tests, along with tests for Chlamydophila species and avian gender determination, became commercially available in early 1998.

Therefore, IDL can truly claim to be the first laboratory to use real-time PCR for exotic animal testing, thus decreasing the turn-around time for results without compromising specificity and sensitivity.

IDL continues to expand, using new technologies to test for pathogens in exotic and companion animals and in wildlife. For more information, please see our list of available tests.

IDL also offers complete DNA in situ hybridization (ISH), immunology, pathology, and microbiology services, and serves as a referral conduit for many other assays, such as Chlamydophila species serology, and laboratory animal diagnostics.

IDL continues to research and develop new tests and new technologies to better serve our clients. Thank you for choosing IDL!