Merck Animal Health is partnering with Kansas State University to locate a new Microbial Surveillance Lab at the KSU-Olathe site.
The lab will initially start out dedicated to providing diagnostic support services for Merck, but plans are to include other animal health industry partners down the road. The lab will be a second site for the Manhattan campus's K-State Veterinary Diagnostic Lab.
A donation from Merck enabled the construction of the lab, which will offer training programs for K-State students to help them learn how to handle a specialized caseload. The lab is not capable of doing microbiology cultures and testing antimicrobial susceptibility testing.
"Merck Animal Health is a valuable partner to K-State through the College of Veterinary Medicine and K-State Olathe," said Kirk Schulz, president of Kansas State University. "By supporting the Microbial Surveillance Lab, Merck will help advance diagnostic education and training, as well as help propel K-State toward our goal of becoming a Top 50 public research university by 2025."
Merck's partnership also provides students in the veterinary biomedical sciences program at the Olathe campus the opportunity for research projects at the laboratory.
"We at Merck Animal Health are proud to support and invest in scientific research as it is vital to the future of the animal health industry and veterinary medicine," said Rick Sibbel, D.V.M., director of technical services, Merck Animal Health. "This partnership provides us with an opportunity to contribute to the education and real-world experiences of students who are pursuing a related degree, as well as impact advances in animal medicine."
Lab established to support animal health pharmaceutical and biological companies
The lab is fully accredited by the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians, and has been established to provide microbiology diagnostic support to animal health pharmaceutical and biological companies. Through value-added partnerships and an entrepreneurial business model, the Microbial Surveillance Lab provides an excelling environment of support for teaching and research, and connectivity to the nation.
"Thanks to Merck, this offers a new platform for us to more easily provide diagnostic services and professional expertise to the Kansas City region, Animal Health Corridor and beyond," said Ralph C. Richardson, dean of Kansas State University's College of Veterinary Medicine. "With the additional benefit of enhancing professional and graduate-level educational opportunities through our K-State Olathe campus, this is a win-win-win situation for all involved."
Olathe Microbial Surveillance Lab services are provided by contract only. Routine diagnostic submissions should continue to be directed to the K-State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory on the Manhattan campus.