Avian Influenza (Bird Flu)

Genetic testing in human and animal medicine has been used for some time, and shows great promise, when used judiciously.  For example, genotyping the avian influenza virus and other pathogens has helped animal and human health officials understand the spread of pathogens so that measures can be implemented to prevent or mitigate such spread.

As

Infectious disease outbreaks often make headlines when they affect humans-think Zika virus-but it is not often that animal disease outbreaks make it above the fold assuming they make news at all. The current and past avian influenza outbreaks in the United States are a great example.  USDA summarized the outbreak in a report titled, “

This week is the most important to the turkey producers of America, when many will enjoy a Thanksgiving meal with family and friends dining on turkey and all the accoutrements routinely accompanying the holiday meal.

If the recent avian influenza outbreak took a toll on American’s pocketbooks, we would expect the price of turkeys to

It has been some time since I have been focused on Foot and Mouth Disease, a virus affecting hoofed stock, including livestock, considered the most infectious virus on the planet.

During and after the 2001 FMD Outbreak in the United Kingdom most animal health officials, myself included, were focused on preventing the importation of this

For animal health officials across the country, one of the most dreaded events, Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) has arrived full force, spreading like wild fire throughout the country, infecting commercial flocks, backyard flocks and wild birds.

The toll on animals and farmers continues to amass.

Recent reports indicate that the virus can be transmitted

The highly pathogenic avian influenza virus that was first identified in the US in December 2014, has spread from wild birds and backyard flocks to chicken and turkey commercial flocks in Arkansas, California, Iowa, Idaho, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, South Dakota, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming, as reported by USDA.  Part

USDA is actively tracking and reporting on the continued spread of highly pathogenic H5N2 Avian Influenza virus in backyard flocks, commercial flocks and wild birds throughout the United States.

Laboratory results are reported on USDA’s website, including the following tests performed on backyard and commercial flocks:

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/wps/portal/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/sa_animal_disease_information/sa_avian_health/!ut/p/a1/vZLBcoIwEIafxiMmBRRyRG0FR3RaZ6rkkgkYIC0kGKLWt29QD1607aW5bXaz___tBmCwAVjQAy-o5lLQqovxkMyWof00gnY0XaFnGC3eX2J_7jnL0AVrgAHOhG50CRLalLwlmRSaCU0qniqqTj3YUiL3iuQy27fniApe04qUjFa6vL3Z8pbRlhEucqnqs4lL-sCpuNZ3gk3GtyBBWZ4j5HgWSwfIcrc-s1LIUovZqcsGzpCiQWYIEkMA75wA_grQlIynQeh6c_PG9W0YTUbhxEMxhNHwWvBAIjEevLsiyAWrP0LNfnJtqG0Vj-PCtKW6tLqBgs3DQV_St4M2TfjHbocDs-Fup18abP5nxYavqGRqPuB6AvCbrHrQfe38BCJ1fAOlWM4UU_1StsbU8XjsF1IWFetnsgZNXfvOyfrMFwsLJ772T_PgG1Nl4HM!/?1dmy&urile=wcm%3apath%3a%2Faphis_content_library%2Fsa_our_focus%2Fsa_animal_health%2Fsa_animal_disease_information%2Fsa_avian_health%2Fct_ai_pacific_flyway
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/wps/portal/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/sa_animal_disease_information/sa_avian_health/

Official actions, including

Approximately 1500 pathogenic organisms exist on the planet (that we know of), of which a majority (75%) are transmissible from animals to humans (or visa versa).  Some of historic significance include bubonic plague, rabies, and brucella (Ranchers, officials uneasy about brucellosis).

There are other infectious diseases that are not shared between species, but