current projects‎ > ‎


This project is a collaboration with the VetSuisse faculty of the University of Bern.

Short Description:

As recognized in the Swiss Animal Health Strategy 2010+, methods for early detection, based on the increasing abundance of data on animal health stored in national databases, can contribute to valuable and highly efficient surveillance activities. Post-mortem data, available from pathology services, are often under-exploited although they provide valuable information on the causes of death and additional health indicators for various animal species. In addition to their value for veterinarians and farmers (with regard to treatment and prevention options for the affected herd), systematic evaluation of post-mortem data could be of great value for nation-wide and international animal health and zoonotic disease early warning systems.

The academic pathology institutes of the Vetsuisse Faculty currently provide most of the veterinary pathology service offered to the food production sector in Switzerland. The overall goal of this project is to make post-mortem data, recorded at a veterinary pathology institute readily available for epidemiological surveillance and the early detection of emerging animal diseases. In particular, this project will focus on the development and evaluation of an automated text-mining and syndrome-classifying tool to 1) extract relevant information from pathology reports (written in free text) with minimal expert intervention; 2) classify pathology findings into syndromic groups to enhance the efficiency of health event detection.

Duration: 2 years (2015-2016)
Funding: 213'408 CHF (total). Funding for the OntoGene group: 88'000 CHF.
Principal investigators: Dr. Flavie Vial, Dr. Fabio Rinaldi,
Dr. John Berezowski


Lenz Furrer, Susanne Küker, John Berezowski, Horst Posthaus, Flavie Vial, Fabio Rinaldi. Constructing a Syndromic Terminology Resource for Veterinary Text Mining. In: Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Terminology and Artificial Intelligence, Granada, 4 November 2015 - 6 November 2015, 61-70.