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Euro Surveill. 2017 Mar 30;22(13). pii: 30498. doi: 10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2017.22.13.30498.

Risk factors for MERS coronavirus infection in dromedary camels in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, and Morocco, 2015.

Author information

1
Cirad UPR AGIRs, Montpellier, France.
2
UMR CNRS, IRD, UM, 5290 MIVEGEC, Montpellier, France.
3
National Veterinary Institute, Addis Abeba, Ethiopia.
4
Institut Agronomique Vétérinaire Hassan 2, Rabat, Morocco.
5
INERA-CNRST, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.
6
School of Public Health, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong Special Adminstrative Region, China.
7
Cirad UMR SELMET, Montpellier, France.
8
Haramaya university, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia.

Abstract

Understanding Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) transmission in dromedary camels is important, as they consitute a source of zoonotic infection to humans. To identify risk factors for MERS-CoV infection in camels bred in diverse conditions in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia and Morocco, blood samples and nasal swabs were sampled in February-March 2015. A relatively high MERS-CoV RNA rate was detected in Ethiopia (up to 15.7%; 95% confidence interval (CI): 8.2-28.0), followed by Burkina Faso (up to 12.2%; 95% CI: 7-20.4) and Morocco (up to 7.6%; 95% CI: 1.9-26.1). The RNA detection rate was higher in camels bred for milk or meat than in camels for transport (p = 0.01) as well as in younger camels (p = 0.06). High seropositivity rates (up to 100%; 95% CI: 100-100 and 99.4%; 95% CI: 95.4-99.9) were found in Morocco and Ethiopia, followed by Burkina Faso (up to 84.6%; 95% CI: 77.2-89.9). Seropositivity rates were higher in large/medium herds (≥51 camels) than small herds (p = 0.061), in camels raised for meat or milk than for transport (p = 0.01), and in nomadic or sedentary herds than in herds with a mix of these lifestyles (p < 0.005).

KEYWORDS:

Density; West - East gradient; herd size; milking activities; nomadic; sedentary

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