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Rabies defence measures in the Channel tunnel (foxes and DNA fingerprinting) - SE0412C

The primary purpose of this project is to provide methodology that will identify the country of origin of foxes that may be found in, or very close to, the Channel tunnel. This relates directly to Government policy to prevent rabies entering Britain, and specifically to transmission of rabies by foxes that may gain access to England through the Channel tunnel. The aim will be achieved by refining DNA fingerprinting methodology for comparison of fox populations, and building a database of DNA fingerprints for fox populations in northern France and South-east England. The methodology will be applied to any foxes, dead or alive, that are found in the Channel tunnel, or which are suspected to have travelled through the tunnel from the French to the English side.


1. Evaluate whether microsatellite polymorphisms identified by published DNA fingerprinting methodology allow differentiation between populations of foxes in South-east England and northern France.

2. Establish a database of DNA fingerprints for foxes from the two populations.

3. Establish procedures for identification of the origin of foxes found in or close to the Channel tunnel.

Project Documents
• Final Report : Rabies Defence Measures in the Channel Tunnel   (3357k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2001

To: 2001

Cost: £10,000
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Central Science Laboratory
Animal Health              
Plants and Animals              
Fields of Study
Animal Health