A cross-sectional study of the seroprevalence and flock-level factors associated with ovine and caprine brucellosis in southeastern Iran

Document Type: Full paper (Original article)

Authors

1 Department of Food Hygiene and Public Health, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman, Kerman, Iran

2 Ph.D. Student in Immunology, Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

3 Research Center for Social Determinants of Health, Institute for Futures Studies in Health, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran; Kerman Veterinary Office, Iranian Veterinary Organization, Kerman, Iran

4 Kerman Veterinary Office, Iranian Veterinary Organization, Kerman, Iran

5 Kerman Veterinary Office, Iranian Veterinary Organization, Kerman, Iran; MSc Student, Department of Microbiology, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Kerman, Iran

6 Research Center for Health Services Management, Institute for Futures Studies in Health, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran

7 Ph.D. Student in Epidemiology, Centre for Veterinary Epidemiological Research, Atlantic Veterinary College, University of Prince Edward Island, Charlottetown, Canada

8 Department of Agricultural Economics, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Jiroft, Jiroft, Iran

9 Laboratory of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Animal Health Economics, University of Thessaly, Karditsa, Greece

Abstract

This cross-sectional study was conducted to estimate seroprevalence and to identify flock-level factors associated with seropositivity to brucellosis in small ruminants in Kerman province, southeastern Iran. In October-November 2011, serum samples were randomly collected from 1767 sheep and 1233 goats, older than 18 months, from 300 flocks. The sera were initially screened for the presence of anti-Brucella antibodies using the Rose-Bengal test; those found to be positive were then examined by Wright and
2-mercaptoethanol Brucella agglutination tests. A questionnaire was used to collect data on flock-level factors likely associated with the within flock seroprevalence of brucellosis. The associations were statistically evaluated for significance in multivariable logistic models. Sixty three flocks (21.00%; 95% CI: 16.80-26.60) had at least one seropositive animal. The mean within-flock seroprevalence was 3.10% (95% CI: 2.60-3.90). The presence of newly purchased animals (OR=3.42; 95% CI: 1.35-8.65) was significantly associated with seropositivity. Our findings highlight the role of animal movement among flocks in the epidemiology of brucellosis in this region. Thus, a control program for brucellosis in the region is suggested to impose appropriate restrictions on animal trade and improve knowledge of livestock owners about quarantine principles for newly purchased animals.

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