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Surveillance of wildlife as a tool for monitoring rinderpest and peste des petits ruminants in West Africa

Author(s) : E. Couacy-Hymann, C. Bodjo, T. Danho, G. Libeau & A. Diallo

Summary :

The authors provide a report on the surveillance of rinderpest virus (RPV) and peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV) in the wildlife population in Côte d’Ivoire. For this purpose, 266 animals from nine different species, selected according to susceptibility and abundance, were captured and sampled from Comoé, Marahoué and Lamto Parks. Two hundred and forty seven sera and 214 nasal swabs were collected and analysed by competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (cELISA) and reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) techniques, respectively. Serological data demonstrated that RPV was not circulating within the national Parks and estimated the PPR seroprevalence to be less than 1%. The analysis of the nasal swabs revealed no cases of RPV infection, but PPRV infection was detected in four species, including buffalo. To minimise the cost of the study without affecting the sensitivity of the test, samples were pooled into different groups and submitted to RT-PCR using nucleoprotein gene specific primers. The RT-PCR used in this study, which was derived from the method developed by Couacy-Hymann et al. in 2002, was followed by a hybridisation step using internal specific probes to confirm the identity of the deoxyribonucleic acid product. When used in conjunction with a cELISA this method accurately demonstrated the absence of rinderpest viral persistence in Côte-d’Ivoire.

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