Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Common menu bar links

Canadian Bovine Mastitis Research Network


cow's udder

Mastitis is the most common and most costly disease in the Canadian dairy industry. It is present in all herds, causing decreased milk production and increased production costs. It also affects milk quality. The mission of the Canadian Bovine Mastitis Research Network (CBMRN) is to reduce the incidence of mastitis, to reduce economic losses and to maintain milk quality through concerted research and effective and rapid transfer of results to users.

Network Structure

The CBMRN initiative dates back to 2001 and was spearheaded by Quebec dairy producers, through Novalait inc., and Quebec researchers. Today, the CBMRN has over 40 Canadian researchers from eight universities and two federal research centres. The CBMRN is managed by a Steering Committee, which is advised by a Scientific Committee and Transfer Committee. In addition to the Director, there are three people responsible for the various administrative, scientific and transfer activities. The dairy industry plays a lead role in planning the Network’s scientific programs, in the transfer of research results and its management.

Research Objectives

The components of the CBMRN’s scientific program revolve around a core research platform.

The objectives of the core platform are:

  1. to establish a national cohort of dairy farms;
  2. to create a network of bacteriology laboratories; and
  3. to establish a pathogen strain bank for long-term storage of mastitis pathogens.

The objectives of the Mastitis Monitoring research theme are:

  1. to determine the incidence of mastitis in Canada;
  2. to characterize the virulence factors of the major pathogens;
  3. to develop a model for monitoring the incidence of intramammary infections within the herd; and
  4. to validate a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method for bacteriological diagnosis of intramammary infections in clinical conditions.

The objectives of the Mastitis Control research theme are:

  1. to develop two vaccines to increase immunity to intramammary infection;
  2. to identify genetic targets for improving natural resistance by genetic selection;
  3. to establish a protocol for on-farm diagnosis and treatment to ensure rational use of antibiotics; and
  4. to determine the extent of the use of antibiotics on dairy farms and the impact on the development of antibiotic resistance.

The CBMRN aims to quickly and effectively transfer the knowledge and technologies arising from its research to the 15,000 dairy producers across Canada.


Thanks to the CBMRN, the Canadian dairy industry will increase its current and future capacity to combat mastitis and control the quality of milk. Current capacity will be increased by meeting specific research objectives and by proactively transferring research results to Canadian dairy producers. Building future capacity to control mastitis will, in turn, happen by transferring the technology that will result from the research, the long-term research resources (notably the increases in laboratory capacity dedicated to milk quality and the establishment of a national collection of mastitis pathogen cultures), and the highly qualified people who will be trained by the program.


Daniel Scholl
Tel.: 450-773-8521, ext. 18605
Web site: This link will take you to another Web site

Contact us at 1-877-767-1767