Published Date: 2006-08-05 00:00:00
Subject: PRO/AH> Peste des petits ruminants - Congo Rep: OIE
Archive Number: 20060805.2170
PESTE DES PETITS RUMINANTS - REPUBLIC OF CONGO: OIE
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: 5 Aug 2006
Source: OIE Disease Information, 3 August 2006, Vol 19 - No. 31
Peste des petits ruminants (PPR) in the Republic of Congo: (disease never
reported before in the Republic of Congo)
Translation of information received on (and dated) 27 Jul 2006 from Dr Leon
Tati, Directorate for Livestock, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and
Reason for immediate notification: first occurrence of a listed disease or
infection in a country.
Identification of agent: virus family Paramyxoviridae, genus Morbillivirus.
Date of 1st confirmation of the event: 3 Jul 2006.
Date of start of the event: December 2005.
Details of outbreaks: Outbreaks of PPR occurred in Plateaux district. In
Djambala sub-prefecture on 12 Apr 2006, a farm with both sheep (127
susceptible) and goats (167 susceptible) were involved resulting in 71
cases and deaths in the sheep and 118 cases and deaths in the goats. Many
but not all of the remaining sheep and goats were slaughtered. Also, in
Djambala subprefecture, villages at Kahon, 200 susceptible goats resulting
in 220 cases and deaths and Akou, 10 susceptible goats resulting in 10
cases and deaths suffered outbreaks. The outbreak in Kahon was on 12 April
2006 and for the outbreak in Akou, a time was not specified. In December
2005, a farm in Lekana subprefecture with 215 sheep/goats [sometimes it is
hard to tell by their looks, especially in dwarf breeds - Mod.PC] suffered
an outbreak resulting in 215 cases and deaths.
Description of affected population: family holdings. Clinical signs of the
disease were first observed in a herd at Lekana, where animals bought in a
border livestock market had been introduced.
Laboratory where diagnostic tests were performed: French Agricultural
Research Centre for International Development (CIRAD-EMVT), Montpellier, France
Results: a competitive ELISA was positive.
Source of outbreak or origin of infection: an epidemiological investigation
is in progress.
[It is instructive to look at a map of the Republic of Congo and the
surrounding areas at
Cameroon, Central African Republic, and Democratic Republic of Congo all
have reported the disease in recent years, although this is 1st official
report from the Republic of Congo.
Peste des petits ruminants (PPR), also known at KATA in West Africa, is a
difficult disease to control, as the susceptibility and mortality rates
show a great deal of variation depending on the experience of the herd
involved and the strain of the virus. Most frequently, the disease is
brought into the herd population by the introduction of new animals, as in
this case. I was involved as a young student in a vivid example of this in
1974 in Ibadan, Nigeria. We tried to buy goats from the market to set up a
foundation stock for ILCA (which has now been merged with its sister
institute ILRAD to form ILRI, now with a worldwide mandate). We got the
goats in small lots from the main market in Ibadan. Buying them in small
lots was an attempt to keep the price down but it ultimately it backfired
as the ILCA's foundation stock was wiped out by a outbreak of PPR. Mixing
small ruminants together from unknown sources and unknown PPR status is a
recipe for disaster.
The disease itself has respiratory features, with an erosive and necrotic
stomatitis, diarrhea, and a severe catarrhal conjunctivitis. On gross
pathology, both enteritis and respiratory lesions are common found. For
more details, see USAHA's Gray Book at
ProMED-mail appreciates the report of this disease and the efforts of
animal health authorities from the Republic of Congo. We hope to get more
detailed reports in the future including some items, such as date,
location, and species for the diagnostic samples which were missing from
It is easy sometimes to report or read postings on outbreaks of disease in
developing countries whose economies are struggling. Occasionally, I step
back to remember that the consequences of those diseases, especially for
those villagers in Akou or Kahon, are sometime life-altering. Outbreaks
like this can be a huge problem for a family who has as little as one or 2
goats or sheep, which they are keeping to sell for when they need cash.
Outbreaks like these can stop bright, young children from going to
secondary school for lack of school fees or significantly alter a family
view of their economic prospects in starting a business. In many situations
in developing countries, the loss of even a single animal to disease can be
a tragedy. - Mod.PC]