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  • Author or Editor: E. Jane Homan x
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SUMMARY

Results of a prospective serologic and virologic study of ruminant livestock in Central America and the Caribbean islands revealed bluetongue virus (btv) to be enzootic in the 9 countries participating in the study. Bluetongue virus serotypes 1, 3, 6, and 12 were isolated from sentinel animals. To the authors’ knowledge, these are the first isolations of btv from the region studied and the first isolations of these serotypes in the Western Hemisphere. Clinical disease attributable to btv infection was not observed in sentinel animals. The incidence pattern, with respect to age and geographic location, was determined. The need to evaluate the epizootiologic features of arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) on a regional ecologic basis is stressed.

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Summary

A regional prospective study of the epidemiology of bluetongue virus (btv) serotypes covering 11 countries in Central America and the Caribbean took place between 1987 and 1992. Active surveillance revealed btv infection to be endemic in the absence of confirmed indigenous cases of bluetongue. During the 6-year span of the study, over 300 btv isolations were obtained from cattle and sheep. Results of the earlier years of the study were summarized, and surveillance activities in the concluding months of the study from November 1990 to February 1992 were evaluated. Forty-five btv isolations were made during this time, 44 from sentinel cattle and 1 from a ram with clinical signs compatible with contagious ecthyma. Virus isolation from potential vectors also was attempted, yielding a further 9 btv isolates from parous Culicoides insignis and C pusillus, 2 btv isolates from blood engorged C filarifer, and 1 epizootic hemorrhagic disease virus type-2 isolate from parous C pusillus. Our extensive network of sentinel herds in the region detected btv-1 as the predominant serotype in Central America in 1991, after an apparent absence of 1 year in the sentinel animals. Other serotypes in Central America at that time included btv-3 and btv-6 in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, btv-4 became the predominant serotype, without detection of btv-8 and btv-17, which were common in recent years of the study. The serotypes found in the Caribbean Basin continued to have marked differences from those in North America. The importance of viewing bluetongue as an infection, the distribution of which is determined principally by ecologic factors, is emphasized.

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research