Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Lessons For The Future From "Most Thorough" Analysis Of Foot And Mouth Epidemic Yet

Date:
October 4, 2001
Source:
Imperial College Of Science, Technology And Medicine
Summary:
A new analysis of the spread of Britain’s Foot and Mouth disease epidemic shows that extended culling programmes were essential for bringing the epidemic under control.

A new analysis of the spread of Britain’s Foot and Mouth disease epidemic shows that extended culling programmes were essential for bringing the epidemic under control.

The study by researchers from Imperial College, London, which is fast-tracked to publication in the latest issue of the scientific journal Nature (4 October), also shows that the number of cases could have been reduced by 16 per cent (saving 30 per cent of animals culled) if the infected premises and contiguous premises cull policy had been fully implemented from 1 April.

The authors of the report call for continued vigilance in order to speed the elimination of the disease from Great Britain.

Professor Neil Ferguson, first author of the report, said:

"This is the most thorough analysis yet of the epidemic. It has enabled us to evaluate the different policies in turn and it clearly shows the need for a rapid and complete contiguous culling policy for disease control and eventual elimination."

The study also helps to explain why some regions were harder hit than others.

The researchers used geographical data representing the number of animals, the species of animal on the farms, and the fragmentation of the farms around the country to make highly predictive Foot and Mouth ‘risk maps’ of Great Britain.

The farm risk factors the maps identified include:

* large farms with many animals are significantly more infectious and susceptible than smaller ones

* cattle farms are most susceptible, sheep farms less so, and pig farms least susceptible

* fragmented farms - made up of scattered fields - are at much higher risk of transmission

Fragmentation, say the authors, is one reason why Cumbrian farms were so hard hit compared to those in Devon or Wales. Farms in Cumbria are significantly more fragmented and this led to increased transmission in the area, probably as a result of greater movement of people and vehicles between land parcels.

The analysis also leads to calculation of a new median distance of transmission of 4km, which, the authors say, "suggests that most transmission probably occurred through the movement of animals, personnel or vehicles, rather than through animal contact or windborne spread."

The UK risk maps also highlight areas of predicted high transmission risk such as the Derbyshire Dales and southwest Wales, which have not yet been affected.

"These areas in particular warrant heightened surveillance and continued vigilance in maintaining movement controls and biosecurity measures," said Professor Ferguson.

The Imperial team does not predict an end date for Britain to be clear of the epidemic. However they say that as colder conditions take hold, farmers need to be alert to the risks of relaxing controls in the coming months.

Dr Christl Donnelly, an author of the research, said:

"We would be very concerned if in the cooler months ahead there were a relaxation of movement restrictions and biosecurity controls."

"We will not have learnt the lesson of 1967 if restrictions are relaxed. As the weather gets cooler and the virus is able to survive longer, we are in danger of seeing significant outbreaks of the epidemic again," she said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Imperial College Of Science, Technology And Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Imperial College Of Science, Technology And Medicine. "Lessons For The Future From "Most Thorough" Analysis Of Foot And Mouth Epidemic Yet." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 October 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011004065655.htm>.
Imperial College Of Science, Technology And Medicine. (2001, October 4). Lessons For The Future From "Most Thorough" Analysis Of Foot And Mouth Epidemic Yet. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011004065655.htm
Imperial College Of Science, Technology And Medicine. "Lessons For The Future From "Most Thorough" Analysis Of Foot And Mouth Epidemic Yet." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/10/011004065655.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

San Diego Zoo Welcomes New, Rare Rhino Calf

San Diego Zoo Welcomes New, Rare Rhino Calf

Reuters - US Online Video (July 21, 2014) An endangered black rhino baby is the newest resident at the San Diego Zoo. Sasha Salama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shark Sightings a Big Catch for Cape Tourism

Shark Sightings a Big Catch for Cape Tourism

AP (July 21, 2014) A rise in shark sightings along the shores of Chatham, Massachusetts is driving a surge of eager vacationers to the beach town looking to catch a glimpse of a great white. (July 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
A Centuries' Old British Tradition Is Far from a Swan Song

A Centuries' Old British Tradition Is Far from a Swan Song

AFP (July 19, 2014) As if it weren't enough that the Queen is the Sovereign of the UK and 15 other Commonwealth realms, she is also the owner of all Britain's unmarked swans. Duration: 02:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins