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Vet Clin North Am Food Anim Pract. 2002 Nov;18(3):515-47, ix.


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  • 1Animal Health Service, FAO, Vialle delle Terme di Caracalla, 00100, Rome, Italy.


Rinderpest, also known as cattle plague, was for centuries the most dreaded bovine plague known and one that changed the course of history and still seriously compromises trade. It can lay waste not only to farming communities but the wildlife heritage of countries also is threatened because its broad host spectrum extends across cattle, Asian buffaloes, yaks, and many other artiodactyls, both domesticated and wild, including swine. This article provides a brief history of rinderpest before describing its clinical, pathologic, epidemiologic, and diagnostic features. In dealing with control, the prospects for total eradication are described in the context of the Global Rinderpest Eradication Programme, which is on target to achieve that goal by 2010--the first time that an animal disease will have been eradicated.

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