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Circulation of bluetongue virus in goats in the Karamoja region of Uganda

Elijah N. Mulabbi, Chrisostom Ayebazibwe, Samuel Majalija, Carrie A. Batten, Christopher A.L. Oura
Journal of the South African Veterinary Association | Vol 84, No 1 | a922 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jsava.v84i1.922 | © 2013 Elijah N. Mulabbi, Chrisostom Ayebazibwe, Samuel Majalija, Carrie A. Batten, Christopher A.L. Oura | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 14 August 2012 | Published: 19 April 2013

About the author(s)

Elijah N. Mulabbi, Department of Bio molecular Resources and Bio laboratory Sciences, Makerere University, Uganda
Chrisostom Ayebazibwe, National Animal Disease Diagnostics and Epidemiology Center, Ministry of Agriculture Animal Resources and Fisheries, Uganda
Samuel Majalija, Department of Bio molecular Resources and Bio laboratory Sciences, Makerere University, Uganda
Carrie A. Batten, Institute for Animal Health, Pirbright, United Kingdom
Christopher A.L. Oura, Department of Bio molecular Resources and Bio laboratory Sciences, Makerere University, Uganda


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Abstract

The presence of bluetongue virus (BTV) in indigenous goats from the Karamoja region of northern Uganda was investigated. A total of 300 goats were sampled (serum and whole blood) from five districts within the Karamoja region. The samples were analysed for the presence of bluetongue (BT) antibodies using a commercial Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and for the presence of BTV viral RNA by real-time Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), because BTV is an RNA virus. Of the 300 goats tested, 269 (90%) were positive for BTV antibodies, indicating high levels of BTV circulation within the region. Out of the 150 whole blood samples tested for the presence of the virus by real-time RT-PCR, 84 (56%) were positive for BTV RNA. This study, which is the first of its kind in Uganda, showed a high seroprevalence of BT antibodies and active circulation of BTV in a high proportion of goats in the Karamoja region.


Keywords

Bluetongue virus, Goats, Karamoja, Uganda.

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