Published Date: 2017-02-18 16:54:40
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Foot & mouth disease - Israel (03): (HD) bovine, st O, Palestinian Auth (GZ) RFI
Archive Number: 20170218.4849013
FOOT & MOUTH DISEASE - ISRAEL (03): (HADAROM) BOVINE, SEROTYPE O, PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY (GAZA) REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
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Date: Thu 16 Feb 2017
Source: Press release, Israel's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural development (in Hebrew, trans. Mod.AS, edited]
The Veterinary Services in the Ministry of Agriculture have diagnosed foot and mouth disease [FMD] in cattle in the dairy operation of Kibbutz Nir Yitzhak, near the border with the Gaza Strip. As part of the coordination agreed between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA), the Israeli Ministry informed its Palestinian counterpart about the recorded event. Subsequently it became apparent that the disease had started its circulation within the Gaza strip several weeks earlier, affecting sheep and cattle herds in the surroundings of Rafah, Khan Younis and Gaza City. These events were not reported then and samples were not sent to the Israeli laboratory in real time as customary. Due to lack of immediate information, it was not possible to apply preventive measures on the Israeli side, leading to the outbreak.
Samples, sent by the PA belatedly to the laboratories of the Veterinary Institute of the Ministry, indeed confirmed the diagnosis. Following the discovery of the disease in the Gaza Strip, Israel will deliver to the PA 30 000 doses of the FMD vaccine.
FMD does not affect humans [see comment]; it is caused by a virus which affects mainly cattle, sheep, goats, and swine. There is no hazard to humans drinking milk or eating the meat of animals. In addition, there is no connection between FMD in animals and the human disease known as "hand-foot-mouth disease" causing aphthae in children's mouths.
The Director of Veterinary Services in the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr Nadav Galon: "We have implemented quarantine upon the movement of animals within the FMD-stricken zone in the south. Our working assumption is that the entire Gaza Strip is at high risk of FMD morbidity at present, including the risk of humans may carry over the virus on their bodies, clothing or belongings. The public is called to follow instructions and to refrain from visiting livestock farms at risk around the Gaza strip (the so called "The Gaza envelope")".
[The outbreak on the dairy operation of the Kibutz Nir Yitzhak, about 3 km (1.87 mi) from the Gaza strip, reportedly started on Sun 4 Feb 2017.
According to the immediate notification of Israel to the OIE, submitted Thu 9 Feb 2017 (20170209.4827158), the Kimron Veterinary Institute, Virology Division, FMD laboratory (National laboratory) performed virus sequencing of the causative agent on Thu 9 Feb 2017. The results were, reportedly, "pending". The genotyping of the strains from Israel and from the Gaza strip are expected to unveil the suspected similarity between them, and, hopefully, the origin of the virus (Egypt?). Genotyping may also provide useful information on the compatibility of the vaccine strains included in the applied vaccine. Results of the genotyping are anticipated with interest.
The most recent information on the genotyping of Israel's FMD strains, on the web-site of the WRLFMD (http://www.wrlfmd.org/fmd_genotyping/me/isr.htm), was published on Thu 9 Feb 2016, addressing the FMDV-O outbreaks of 2015. These samples were identified as "topotype ME-SA, lineage PanAsia." No recent submissions are mentioned.
The animal movement restrictions, as currently applied in Israel, refer to a 10 km (6.2 mi) zone around the focus (map at http://www.moag.gov.il/subject/anfe_baale_chaim/Documents/nirizhak_mapa.pdf), and to all settlements within a 3 km (1.87 mi) zone around the Gaza strip (map at http://www.moag.gov.il/subject/anfe_baale_chaim/Documents/aza_3km_sett.pdf).
The FMD vaccination scheme in Israel was updated during the 1980's of the previous century, taking into consideration the recorded seasonality of the disease locally and the prevailing animal husbandry, as follows:
General vaccination of all cattle above the age of 3 months should be carried out annually from 1 October to 31 December with a trivalent oil-emulsion vaccine (serotypes 01, A, Asia1). Booster vaccination should be carried out in cattle younger than 18 months, 8 to 12 weeks after their initial vaccination. Calves born after the general vaccination period are to be vaccinated when 3 months old within a secondary scheme. (For the said and additional information, please see "Israel" on page 454 in http://bvs1.panaftosa.org.br/local/File../textoc/AidarosRegional.pdf).
According to a reliable source, so far 30 percent (about 200 head) morbidity has been recorded in the infected herd. The last 6 new cases were recorded on Wed 15 Feb 2017 in yearlings. It will be helpful to note if the Nir-Yitzhak herd was vaccinated according to the stipulations of the above scheme, during the years 2015/2016.
An official notification of the FMD situation in the PA (Gaza strip) is anticipated. - Mod.AS
Despite the statement to the contrary in the article above, FMD can infect humans, although this rarely occurs. Drinking unpasteurized milk from infected animals, working with infected animals, and/or handling infected laboratory samples have all reportedly led to FMD infections in humans. Symptoms are typically mild and include fever, anorexia, and/or vesicles on the skin. - Mod.JH
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