Published Date: 2012-03-07 15:19:50
Subject: PRO/AH> Foot & mouth disease - Egypt: susp, imported, RFI
Archive Number: 20120307.1063672
FOOT & MOUTH DISEASE - EGYPT: SUSPECTED, IMPORTED, REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Fri 24 Feb 2012
Source: The Egyptian Gazette [summ., edited]
A secret war has broken out between certain officials at the Ministry of Agriculture and a group of importers importing live cattle from Ethiopia. The minister of agriculture, Reda Ismail, is being urged to stop these imports and ban ministerial committees from travelling to Ethiopia to buy live cattle.
There are claims that the meat from these cattle is responsible for raising the rates of infection with tuberculosis among Egyptians, especially given that a female veterinarian Mary Moussa has become afflicted with the disease due to her work at the slaughterhouse dealing with diseased animals.
Further, veterinarians warn of a foot and mouth disease [FMD] epidemic in Egypt's animal wealth: this disease has appeared in a number of governorates including Sohag, Qena, and Aswan in Upper Egypt, due to the smuggling of Sudanese cows across the southern borders [see comment].
FMD is widespread in cattle herds in Ethiopia and Sudan. Corrupt importers are exploiting citizens' needs to cope with the gap between local production of 700 000 tonnes annually, while consumers require 1.2 million tonnes.
[byline: Amina Abdul Salam]
[According to Egypt's page of the WRLFMD (World Reference Laboratory for FMD), Pirbright, at http://www.wrlfmd.org/fmd_genotyping/africa/egy.htm, Egypt experienced throughout the years outbreaks of FMDV serotypes O (last year of reported occurrence, 2009), FMDV-A (2009), and FMDV-SAT2 (1950).
According to Ethiopia's page, at http://www.wrlfmd.org/fmd_genotyping/africa/eth.htm, FMD is endemic, with the following FMDV serotypes on record: FMDV-A (2009), FMDV-O (2011), FMDV-C (1983), FMDV-SAT1 (2007), and FMDV-SAT2 (2010).
Exclusion of the exotic serotypes SAT1 and SAT2 in Egypt is of paramount importance since the livestock throughout the region has not been vaccinated against them and are susceptible to infection.
In the past, exotic FMD viruses were the cause of panzootics, which spread to many areas of the region, even extending to the frontier of Europe. A remarkable example was the rapid dissemination of serotype SAT1 virus, which occurred initially in Bahrain in December 1961. The virus spread north westwards to reach Iraq, Jordan, Israel, and Syria by April 1962, continuing to Iran and Turkey. In September 1962, this serotype crossed the Bosporus to enter Europe for the 1st time, and in November, caused an outbreak further west, near the border between Turkey and Greece.
According to informal, reliable sources, outbreaks of FMD, initially reported from Upper Egypt (see in the newswire above), have been suspected recently also in Egypt's Delta governorates. Confirmation or (hopefully) otherwise will be much appreciated. In case affirmative, information on the serotype(s) involved is of high priority. - Mod.AS
A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at: http://healthmap.org/r/1zkM.]