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Serological survey of bovine viral diarrhoea virus in Namibian and South African kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) and eland (Taurotragus oryx)

Terence P. Scott, Eleanor Stylianides, Wanda Markotter, Louis Nel
Journal of the South African Veterinary Association | Vol 84, No 1 | a937 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jsava.v84i1.937 | © 2013 Terence P. Scott, Eleanor Stylianides, Wanda Markotter, Louis Nel | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 28 September 2012 | Published: 16 August 2013

About the author(s)

Terence P. Scott, Department of Microbiology and Plant Pathology, University of Pretoria, South Africa
Eleanor Stylianides, Research and Development Laboratory, Design Biologix, South Africa
Wanda Markotter, Department of Microbiology and Plant Pathology, University of Pretoria, South Africa
Louis Nel, Department of Microbiology and Plant Pathology, University of Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

Bovine viral diarrhoea virus (BVDV) is a pestivirus that affects members of the order Artiodactyla, including members of the subfamily Bovinae. Little is known about the seroprevalence of BVDV in southern Africa, especially the prevalence in wild ruminant populations such as kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros). A handful of random surveys suggested that seroprevalence ranged between 6% and 70% in southern African wild ruminants. The present study aimed to determine the seroprevalence of BVDV amongst kudu and eland (Taurotragus oryx) from Namibia and South Africa. A BVDV-specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was performed on 50 serum samples from kudu and eland from South Africa and Namibia. The seroprevalence of BVDV in South African kudu was 71%, identical to that in Namibian kudu. The seroprevalence in Namibian eland was 40%. The kudu and cattle farming (free ranging) regions in Namibia predominantly overlap in the central regions, ensuring ample opportunity for cross-species transmission of BVDV. It is therefore important to determine the true prevalence of BVDV in southern Africa in both domesticated and wild animals. In addition, a potential link between BVDV incidence and a devastating rabies epidemic in Namibian kudu was proposed and such a notion could be supported or discredited by comparative prevalence data.

Keywords

kudu; bovine viral diarrhoea virus; serology; eland; ELISA; South Africa; Namibia

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