Lumpy skin disease (LSD) is a disease of cattle and domestic buffaloes caused by Capripoxvirus which can lead to significant economic losses. Until several years ago it was limited to Africa and the Middle East, but recently it was reported in Turkey (2013), Greece (2015), and in 2016 it spread to Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Albania, Montenegro and Serbia. The aim of this study was to determine the microscopic lesions in the skin of naturally infected animals, highlight their features and compare them to the findings of other authors. Gross lesions in the skin of cattle infected with Lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV) were manifested in the form of skin nodules which were round, raised, clearly circumscribed, firm and randomly distributed in the whole skin including the vulva and udder. Histopathological lesions included degeneration of epithelial cells, hyperkeratosis, spongiosis, and acanthosis present in 85.88%, 81.18%, 84.71%, and 80.0% of samples, respectively. Intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies were noted in keratinocytes of the stratum spinosum in 56.47% of samples, and in hair follicle cells and sebaceous glands epithelial cells in 45.88% of samples. Cutaneous lesions were in the form of inflammatory infiltrate present in the dermis and subcutis in 97.65% of samples. Since there are only a few literature data in this field, this study expands the knowledge relating to morphological alterations in LSD. Based on the characteristic microscopic lesions described in the present study, histopathology should be considered as a very useful method for the diagnosis of LSD.
Currently, African swine fever (ASF) is one of the biggest global economic challenges in Europe and Asia. Despite all the efforts done to understand the mechanism of spread, presence and maintenance of ASF in domestic pigs and wild boar, there are still many gaps in the knowledge on its epidemiology.
This study aims to describe spatial and temporal patterns of ASF spread in wild boar and domestic pigs in the country during the last three years. Methods of Spatio-temporal scanning statistics of Kulldorff (SatScan) and Mann-Kendell statistics (space-time cube) were used to identify potential clusters of outbreaks and the presence of hot spots (areas of active flare clusters), respectively. The results showed that ASF in the country has a local epidemic pattern of spread (11 explicit clusters in wild boar and 16 epizootic clusters were detected in the domestic pig population: 11 in the European part and 5 in the Asian part), and only six of them are overlapped suggesting that ASF epidemics in domestic pigs and wild boar are two separate processes. In the Nizhny Novgorod, Vladimir, Ivanovo, Novgorod, Pskov, Leningrad regions, the clusters identified are characterized as sporadic epidemics clusters, while in the Ulyanovsk region, Primorsky Territory, and the Jewish Autonomous Region the clusters are consistent. Considering the low biosecurity level of pig holdings in the far east and its close economic and cultural connections with China as well as other potential risk factors, it can be expected that the epidemic will be present in the region for a long time. The disease has spread in the country since 2007, and now it is reoccurring in some of the previously affected regions. Outbreaks in the domestic pig sector can be localized easily (no pattern detected), while the presence of the virus in wildlife (several consecutive hot spots detected) hampers its complete eradication. Although the disease has different patterns of spread over the country its driving forces remain the same (human-mediated spread and wild boar domestic-pigs mutual spillover). The results indicate that despite all efforts taken since 2007, the policy of eradication of the disease needs to be reviewed, especially measures in wildlife.
Lumpy skin disease (LSD) is an important disease of cattle which is included in the OIE list of notifiable terrestrial animal diseases because of its great economic importance. The etiological agent is the Lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV).
In the control of LSD attenuated strains of LSDV and SPPV are successfully used as vaccine strains in infected areas. In the case of vaccination policy, due to the possibility of mild or systemic post-vaccination reactions in vaccinated animals, the application of diagnostic procedures that will rapidly and specifically differentiate LSDV field strains from LSD vaccine virus strains are extremely important. Rapidity in diagnostics and disposal of infected animals is one of the key factors in the prevention of spreading the disease.
In the presented study we have described the development and validation of two real-time TaqMan-PCR assays for a rapid, sensitive and specific detection of the virulent field LSDV strain currently circulating in the Balkan Peninsula. Specificity for the field strain and exclusivity for vaccine strains was tested on 171 samples from naturally infected and vaccinated animals.
The results of this study show that both developed real-time PCR assays are more sensitive than the conventional nested PCR in detecting field LSDV strains thus enabling rapid and high-throughput detection of animals infected with field strains of LSDV.
In conclusion, both KV-2 and FLI real-time PCR assays described in this study are simple, rapid, sensitive and suitable for routine use in a diagnostic laboratory and have the potential to replace conventional nested gel-based PCR assays as the standard procedure for the detection of field strains of LSDV in clinical samples.