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Gaidet N.,CIRAD - Agricultural Research for Development | Caron A.,CIRAD - Agricultural Research for Development | Cappelle J.,CIRAD - Agricultural Research for Development | Cumming G.S.,University of Cape Town | And 20 more authors.
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

Despite considerable effort for surveillance of wild birds for avian influenza viruses (AIVs), empirical investigations of ecological drivers of AIV prevalence in wild birds are still scarce. Here we used a continental-scale dataset, collected in tropical wetlands of 15 African countries, to test the relative roles of a range of ecological factors on patterns of AIV prevalence in wildfowl. Seasonal and geographical variations in prevalence were positively related to the local density of the wildfowl community and to the wintering period of Eurasian migratory birds in Africa. The predominant influence of wildfowl density with no influence of climatic conditions suggests, in contrast to temperate regions, a predominant role for inter-individual transmission rather than transmission via long-lived virus persisting in the environment. Higher prevalences were found in Anas species than in non-Anas species even when we account for differences in their foraging behaviour (primarily dabbling or not) or their geographical origin (Eurasian or Afro-tropical), suggesting the existence of intrinsic differences between wildfowl taxonomic groups in receptivity to infection. Birds were found infected as often in oropharyngeal as in cloacal samples, but rarely for both types of sample concurrently, indicating that both respiratory and digestive tracts may be important for AIV replication. © 2011 The Royal Society. Source

Gaidet N.,CIRAD - Agricultural Research for Development | Ould El Mamy A.B.,Center National Delevage Et Of Recherches Veterinaires | Cappelle J.,CIRAD - Agricultural Research for Development | Caron A.,CIRAD - Agricultural Research for Development | And 16 more authors.

Heterogeneity in the transmission rates of pathogens across hosts or environments may produce disease hotspots, which are defined as specific sites, times or species associations in which the infection rate is consistently elevated. Hotspots for avian influenza virus (AIV) in wild birds are largely unstudied and poorly understood. A striking feature is the existence of a unique but consistent AIV hotspot in shorebirds (Charadriiformes) associated with a single species at a specific location and time (ruddy turnstone Arenaria interpres at Delaware Bay, USA, in May). This unique case, though a valuable reference, limits our capacity to explore and understand the general properties of AIV hotspots in shorebirds. Unfortunately, relatively few shorebirds have been sampled outside Delaware Bay and they belong to only a few shorebird families; there also has been a lack of consistent oropharyngeal sampling as a complement to cloacal sampling. In this study we looked for AIV hotspots associated with other shorebird species and/or with some of the larger congregation sites of shorebirds in the old world. We assembled and analysed a regionally extensive dataset of AIV prevalence from 69 shorebird species sampled in 25 countries across Africa and Western Eurasia. Despite this diverse and extensive coverage we did not detect any new shorebird AIV hotspots. Neither large shorebird congregation sites nor the ruddy turnstone were consistently associated with AIV hotspots. We did, however, find a low but widespread circulation of AIV in shorebirds that contrast with the absence of AIV previously reported in shorebirds in Europe. A very high AIV antibody prevalence coupled to a low infection rate was found in both first-year and adult birds of two migratory sandpiper species, suggesting the potential existence of an AIV hotspot along their migratory flyway that is yet to be discovered. © 2012 Gaidet et al. Source

Fentie T.,University of Gondar | Heidari A.,OIE FAO Reference Laboratory for avian influenza and Newcastle disease | Aiello R.,OIE FAO Reference Laboratory for avian influenza and Newcastle disease | Kassa T.,Addis Ababa Institute of Technology | And 3 more authors.
Tropical Animal Health and Production

Newcastle disease (ND) is a highly contagious disease that affects many species of birds and causes significant economic losses to the poultry industry worldwide. Fifteen Newcastle disease virus (NDV) isolates obtained from rural chickens in northwest Ethiopia in 2011 and 2012 were characterized genotypically. The main functional region of the F gene was amplified and sequenced (260 nucleotides). Among the Ethiopian NDV isolates, 2 isolates had the virulent motif 112R-R-Q-K-R-F117 at the cleavage site of the fusion protein while 13 isolates contained the lentogenic motif 112G-G/R-Q-G-R-L117. Phylogenetic analysis based on the variable region of the F gene indicated that the two isolates exhibiting the virulent motif belonged to lineage 5 (genotype VII) subgenotype d and the remaining 13 isolates were grouped into lineage 2 (genotype II). The nucleotide sequences of lineage 5 isolates were genetically related to the Sudanese NDV isolates, suggesting potential epidemiological link of ND outbreaks between neighbouring countries. The lentogenic strains shared similarities with La Sota vaccine strain and probably originated from the vaccine strain either through direct exposure of birds to the live vaccine or to infectious La Sota-like strains circulating in rural poultry. This study provides genetic evidence on the existence of different NDV genotypes circulating in the rural poultry in Ethiopia. The virulent NDV continues to be a problem in poultry sector in Ethiopia, and their continuous circulation in rural and commercial poultry calls for improved surveillance and intensified vaccination and other control measures. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. Source

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