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Foot-and-mouth Disease in Wildlife with Particular Reference to the African Buffalo (Syncerus Caffer)

  • R. S. Hedger

Abstract

Many species of wild animals in Africa have been reported as having been infected with Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD) and Foot-and-Mouth Disease virus (FMDV) has been isolated from some in the natural state. Random serological surveys have indicated a number of species to be susceptible to FMDV, the highest and most consistent antibody titres being recorded in the African buffalo. Subsequently, FMDV has been isolated from the pharyngeal samples of small groups of clinically normal wild buffalo in several African territories. In more extensive surveys using sophisticated techniques of immobilisation and capture, FMDV, often in considerable titre, has been isolated from up to 60% of sampled animals over a considerable period of time. This has been in the absence of any signs of disease in either the buffalo or other susceptible species with which they were in close contact and, in Botswana, during the complete absence of disease from domestic stock over an eight-year period.

Results indicate that the African buffalo is a true maintenance host of FMDV and a possible means of perpetu-ation of the virus is suggested. Although mild clinical disease may occur in particular circumstances, overspill of virus into other species is a rare occurrence and its mechanism not yet understood. Individual buffalo may harbour virus for very long periods and comment is made on the size of population necessary for its perpetuation.

Keywords

Antibody Titre Virus Type Virus Isolation Buffalo Calf Domestic Stock 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Zusammenfassung

Seit langem ist es bekannt, dass viele afrikanische Wildtiere an Maul- und Klauenseuche erkranken können. Man hat schon das MKS-Virus von einigen Arten gewonnen. Eine serologische Untersuchung von Stichproben bestätigt die Empfänglichkeit viele Wildtiere für MKS. Darunter besitzt der afrikanische Büffel (Syncerus caffer) die höchsten und am meisten übereinstimmenden Antikörpertitern. Jetzt haben wir das MKS-Virus in Rachenflüssigkeitproben, die von kleinen Gruppen klinisch normaler wilder Büffel in mehreren Gegenden Afrikas gesammelt waren, gefunden. In umfassenderen Untersuchungen, unter Benützung von die neuesten Methode der Immobilisierung und des Fangs, war die Isolierung des MKS-Virus, oft in grossen Mengen, in bis zu 60 Prozent der Probetiere während eines langen Zeitraums gelungen. Diese Isolierungen waren ohne Krankheitszeichen entweder in Büffeln oder in anderen empfänglichen Tierarten in näherer Verbindung damit begleitet. In Botswana waren Haustiere während acht Jahren völlig infektionsfrei geblieben.

Wir haben gezeigt, dass der afrikanische Büffel ein wahres Wirt für die Erhaltung von MKS-Virus darstellte, und mögliche Wege dafür sind erörtert. Obwohl eine milde klinische Infektion in gewissen Umständen vorkommen möge, ist eine Übertragung des Virus auf andere Tierarten selten, und den Mechanismus davon noch nicht erklärt. Einzelne Büffel könnten das MKS-Virus eine sehr lange Zeit herbergen. Die nötige Tierbestandsdichte für eine solche Viruserhaltung wird diskutiert.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. S. Hedger
    • 1
  1. 1.Animal Virus Research Institute PirbrightEngland

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