Bluetongue: History, global epidemiology, and pathogenesis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

108 Scopus citations

Abstract

Bluetongue is an arthropod-transmitted viral disease of ruminants and certain other animals that was recognized and described more than 100 years ago in southern Africa. Bluetongue virus (BTV) infection of ruminants and vector Culicoides insects is enzootic throughout tropical and temperate regions of the world; however, there have been drastic recent regional alterations in the global distribution of BTV infection, particularly in Europe since 1998. Multiple novel BTV serotypes also have been detected since 1998 in the south-eastern United States, apparently encroaching from the adjacent Caribbean ecosystem, and novel serotypes of BTV have been identified recently in other historically enzootic regions of the world, including the Middle East and Australia. It has been proposed, but certainly not proven, that global climate change is responsible for these events. BTV infection of ruminants is often subclinical, but outbreaks of severe disease occur with regular frequency especially at the upper and lower limits of the virus' global range where infection is highly seasonal - occurring in the late summer and autumn. Bluetongue disease results from vascular injury, likely through a process analogous to that of human hemorrhagic viral fevers in which production of vasoactive mediators from virus-infected macrophages and dendritic cells results in enhanced endothelial paracellular permeability with subsequent vascular leakage and hypovolemic shock.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-111
Number of pages5
JournalPreventive Veterinary Medicine
Volume102
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2011

Keywords

  • Bluetongue
  • Epidemiology
  • Pathogenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Food Animals

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