Faculty » Faculty of Veterinary Medicine

Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
Khon Kaen University

Website: http://vet.kku.ac.th
Tel: 043-202-404
Fax : 043-202-404

The Faculty of Veterinary Medicine is one of the three leading tertiary institutes in veterinary medicine in ASEAN and one of the 50 health science institutes in ASEAN. And by 2015, it is planning to be academically successful in aspects of animal health and sanitation as well as offering training in ethics, academic work and social services.

1. To produce veterinarians equipped with  intelligence, ethics, and knowledge in both undergraduate and post-undergraduate level.   
2. To be the central cooperation in research, investigations in animal diseases, and development of new bodies of knowledge and services.  
3. To be the higher education hub providing academic services to the public, veterinarians, animal-breeding careers as well as general people in Thailand and ASEAN.
4. To preserve local wisdom and graceful culture for the balance and sustainability of the northeastern region and overall country.

Core purposes    
1. To strengthen the feasible academic research. (Research for One Health).
2. To produce well-qualified and hand-on veterinarians (Job readiness).
3. To be the ASEAN animal health hub.
4. To be a friendly environment in workplace in order to enhancing the best quality.

Focusing on the achievement of ethics, academic quality and social services.

Core competencies    
1. To prepare Veterinary students on job availability in all expert areas.  
2. To research and construct new context of knowledge basis in order to addressing  with animal health problems in the Khong River areas.

The faculty of veterinary medicine was established since 1986 to promote livestock production in North-eastern Thailand and to increase opportunities for higher education for local students. At that time, the faculty was the 13th Faculty to be established at Khon Kaen University, and the third Faculty of Veterinary Medicine to be established in Thailand. However, because of the growth of the Thai economy and the opening of markets for manufactured goods and the promotion of educational opportunities, the objectives of the faculty have been expanded to also serve students from our neighboring countries, which include Laos, Burma, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Students graduating from our faculty are ready for the job market because they have completed a wide array of academic, clinical, and research courses, including externship experiences.
The faculty is currently offering a six year curriculum for the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program. The graduate study programs are also conducted to strengthen the research capabilities of the faculty. Two graduate diploma programs, four master programs, and one doctoral program have been established : International Graduate Diploma Program in Livestock Diseases and Health Management, Graduate Diploma Program in Companion Animal Practice, International Master Program in Interdisciplinary Veterinary Science, Master Program in Theriogenology, Master Program in Veterinary Medicine, Master Program in Veterinary Public Health, and International Doctoral Program in Interdisciplinary Veterinary Science.
Our Research projects focus on animal health, zoonosis, food safety, and herbal medicine, and corresponds to the governmental policy to enhance animal food production. The diagnostic laboratory for emerging diseases (e.g. avian influenza) has also been established. Our faculties’ research work has been published both at national and international levels.
The Veterinary Teaching Hospital (VTH) was established in order to support a variety of activities such as animal health care, veterinary student practice, and research in animal health. Currently, most activities involve dogs, cats, and cattle. VTH occasionally provides services for other species including horses, pigs, poultries, and wildlife. In addition, an ambulatory clinic has been provided for animal health services (mainly in dairy and beef cattle).
Animal Reservoir: A Neglected Factor in Eradication of Human Opisthochiasis

Opisthorchiasis, human liver fluke disease, is a food-borne parasitic zoonosis caused by Opisthorchis viverrini. The disease is transmissible by eating infected fish and fish products that are raw or undercooked. Since Khon Kaen is considered as a major human opisthorchiatic endemic area, several campaigns concerning the abstinence of eating raw fish among the risk group have been launched in this province. Nevertheless, the outcomes of the campaigning have seemed unsatisfactory because the previous data still shows high incidence of infection. One neglected factor affecting the unsuccessful eradication is the persistence of the disease in some animal reservoir hosts, such as dogs and cats. Our previous survey could reveal a much higher prevalence in cats (35.51%) than in dogs (0.37%). Surprisingly, the infected animals did not have any distinguish clinical signs and hematological changes, except in the optical density from serological studies, which was 3 times higher than in the healthy cats. Besides, the preliminary ultrasonographical study in the infected cats could disclose some pathological lesions which may be similar to those in humans. It is quite convincing that the cat is an important reservoir of human opisthorchiasis, which has been neglected in the eradicating measures.
Bovine Viral Diarrhoea Virus infection in Thai Dairy Herds; what have we done?
From 2000 until the present, a series of BVDV studies has been carried out in the Northeastern part of Thailand, especially in Khon Kaen province.
Epidemiology: Bovine viral diarrhoea virus (BVDV) is an important pestivirus of cattle that has a worldwide distribution and tends to be endemic in most populations, although national and regional variations occur. In 2000-2001, BTM analysis and individual testing in 11 dairy herds was done in the dairy populations of 3 provinces of the Northeast. From the study, a self-clearance process was found to be suspicious. A confirmation of the self-clearance process was proven by a long-term study of the 186 dairy herds in same population from 2002-2004 with 4 consecutive samples. Based on experiences from BVDV-eradicated countries, this process can continue as long as introductions of the infections to non-infected herds are prevented. However, a strict biosecurity of animal movement had not been regularly practiced, especially for BVDV.  As a result, in 2008, a BTM survey of 420 dairy herds in Khon Kaen Province indicated that 10% of the herds had an active status of BVDV infection. Supported by NSTDA, a survey of the current status of the infection has been made in Khon Kaen and neighboring provinces.

Impact of the infection: Introduction of BVDV to a susceptible herd results in failure in cattle reproduction and economic losses for the farmers.  During a study in 2008-2009, 37 active infection herds were visited, and individual samples and reproductive data were collected. At the same time, and from the same number of herds data was collected from an infection-free group of 37 herds. The reproductive index i.e. Calving to first service interval (CFS), Calving to conception interval (CCI), Calving interval (CI) and Overall pregnancy rate of herds that are actively  infected are significantly poorer than herds that are free of BVDV infection. Calculating the estimates of other losses due to the infection such as milk production and sickness is ongoing, and is also supported by NSTDA.

The Virus: There are three genetically distinct genotypes of cattle pestiviruses; BVDV-1, BVDV-2 and atypical pestivirus. According to a survey in 2004, an atypical isolate Th/04_KhonKaen is the first atypical isolate that has been found in a living calf. The isolate was subsequently analyzed and its whole genome structure revealed a unique structure of virus genome. Five new isolates were identified in 2008-2009. Among of them, 2 were identified as atypical pestivirus. In the near future, the new isolates will be genetically analyzed.
Implementation of diagnostic tools for Thai isolate: A commercial Erns capture ELISA was evaluated in comparison with the VI test for detection of BVDV antigen in Thai cattle sera.  The development of an antigen capture ELISA for the detection of Thai atypical pestivirus is in process and is supported by TRF.


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