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Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis. 2014 Aug;14(8):618-20. doi: 10.1089/vbz.2013.1521.

Serological anthrax surveillance in wild boar (Sus scrofa) in Ukraine.

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  • 11 Spatial Epidemiology & Ecology Research Laboratory, Department of Geography, University of Florida , Gainesville, Florida.


Anthrax, caused by Bacillus anthracis, is an acute disease affecting wildlife, livestock, and humans worldwide, although its impact on these populations is underappreciated. In Ukraine, surveillance is passive, and anthrax is often detected in livestock. However, wildlife is not subject to surveillance, although anthrax deaths (such as in wild boar, Sus scrofa) have been documented. The wild boar is a plentiful and widespread species in Ukraine and is frequently hunted. We initiated a screening study testing Ukrainian wild boar blood samples for antibodies to B. anthracis. We mapped results relative to known livestock anthrax hotspots. We discovered evidence of exposure in wild boar up to 35 km from livestock anthrax hotspots and over 400 km from previous anthrax reports in boars. We make recommendations about using wildlife species as biosentinels for anthrax in Ukraine.


Anthrax; Bacillus anthracis; Biosentinel; Serological surveillance; Sus scrofa; Ukrainian wildlife; Wild boar

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