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Transbound Emerg Dis. 2015 Oct;62(5):457-62. doi: 10.1111/tbed.12386. Epub 2015 Jun 24.

Lumpy Skin Disease in Iraq: Study of the Disease Emergence.

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College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Karbala, Karbala, Iraq.
College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq.


This study intends to report the first emergence of lumpy skin disease (LSD) in Iraq, in addition to describing its related clinical signs. In August 2013, 21 cases of four outbreaks developed clinical signs suggestive of LSD in the Nineveh (Mosul) and Baghdad Governorates, which were considered as the first infected foci of LSD in Iraq. The disease was diagnosed tentatively, on the basis of clinical signs and epidemiological features, and it was confirmed as positive by the polymerase chain reaction and histopathological features. In September 2013, eight new outbreaks of LSD also appeared in Baghdad and Nineveh. In 2014, the disease spread rapidly to the governorates of Kirkuk, Salah Al-Din, Al-Anbar, Diyala, Wasit, Babil, Karbala, Najaf, Al-Diwaniyah, Muthanna, Maysan, DhiQar and Basra. The total number of infected cows and calves reported was 7396 and 227, respectively. The apparent morbidity and mortality rates were 9.11% and 0.51%, respectively, while the apparent case-fatality rate was 5.56%. Skin nodules, anorexia, reduce in milk production and decrease in bodyweight were the common clinical signs. Moreover, myiasis and mastitis were seen as complications in some infected animals. Attempts were made to stop the distribution of the disease including quarantine and treatment, control over animal movement and arthropod control. Ring vaccination was used in a 10 km radius zone around the outbreak with live sheep pox vaccine. The highly contagious transboundary nature of the LSD, its endemic distribution in the Iraqi neighbouring countries, and the current armed conflict in the area were the possible factors for the disease being introduced into the country. LSD had spread through the Middle East and Gulf peninsula and could be a cause of danger to the rest of Asia and Europe. International precaution, cooperation and exchange of information could guarantee the prevention and further spread of the disease to the rest of Asia and Europe.


Baghdad; Iraq; Nineveh governorate; lumpy skin disease; middle east; ring vaccination

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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