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Specific Pathogen Free
Use of SPF animals ensures that specified diseases do not interfere with an experiment. For example, absence of respiratory pathogens such as influenza in desirable when investigating a drug's effect on lung function.
Additional recommended knowledge
Completely germ free
The animals can be born through a caesarian section then special care taken so the newborn does not acquire infections, such as use of sterile plastic bags with a positive pressure differential.
A disadvantage is that any contact with pathogens will be fatal, since no protective bacterial flora are present (on the skin or in the intestine or respiratory tract).
To certify SPF, the population is checked for presence of (antibodies against) the specified pathogens.
Minimal disease status
When by accident some infection does occur, the population is said to have minimal disease status.
The population is regularly checked to ensure the status still holds.
SPF eggs can be used to make vaccines.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Specific_Pathogen_Free". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|