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Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Serotype SAT 3 in Long-Horned Ankole Calf, Uganda - Volume 21, Number 1—January 2015 - Emerging Infectious Disease journal - CDC

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Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Serotype SAT 3 in Long-Horned Ankole Calf, Uganda - Volume 21, Number 1—January 2015 - Emerging Infectious Disease journal - CDC


Volume 21, Number 1—January 2015


Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Serotype SAT 3 in Long-Horned Ankole Calf, Uganda

Moses Tefula Dhikusooka, Kirsten Tjørnehøj, Chrisostom Ayebazibwe, Alice Namatovu, Simon Ruhweza, Hans Redlef Siegismund, Sabenzia Nabalayo Wekesa, Preben Normann, and Graham J. BelshamComments to Author 
Author affiliations: Ministry of Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries, Entebbe, Uganda (M.T. Dhikusooka, C. Ayebazibwe, A. Namatovu, S. Ruhweza)Technical University of Denmark, Kalvehave, Denmark (K. Tjørnehøj, P. Normann, G.J. Belsham)Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda (A. Namatovu, S.N. Wekesa)University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark (H.R. Siegismund)Ministry of Livestock Development, Nairobi, Kenya (S.N. Wekesa)


After a 16-year interval, foot-and-mouth disease virus serotype SAT 3 was isolated in 2013 from an apparently healthy long-horned Ankole calf that grazed close to buffalo in Uganda. The emergent virus strain is ≈20% different in nucleotide sequence (encoding VP1 [viral protein 1]) from its closest relatives isolated previously from buffalo in Uganda.
Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) remains one of the most economically important diseases of livestock, costing ≈US $10 billion annually (1). Outbreaks occur in many countries, and normally disease-free countries can incur huge costs after incursions (e.g., the United Kingdom in 2001). The disease results from infection with FMD virus (FMDV, the prototypic aphthovirus within the Picornaviridae family) (2). Seven serotypes of FMDV are known; serotypes O and A are widely distributed, and the Southern African Territories (SAT) serotypes (1, 2, and 3) usually are restricted to Africa. Serotype Asia 1 has never circulated within Africa; serotype C has not been identified anywhere since 2005 (2,3). SAT 3 FMDV is the least well–characterized serotype; the most recent incidence of SAT 3 reported by the FMD World Reference Laboratory (Pirbright Institute, Woking, UK) was in buffalo within the Kruger National Park (South Africa) in 2006. In contrast, SAT 1 and SAT 2 FMDVs are much more common; a major incursion of SAT 2 into the Middle East occurred in 2012 (4), and outbreaks caused by these serotypes have occurred in many African countries (http://www.wrlfmd.org/fmd_genotyping/2013.htm).
In Uganda, FMD is endemic, and serotypes O and SAT 2 are the most common. In Uganda, SAT 3 FMDV was most recently identified in 1997 in buffalo in the Queen Elizabeth National Park (QENP) (5). SAT 1 and SAT 2 viruses were isolated from buffalo in QENP in 2006, and serologic test results indicated the presence of antibodies against SAT 3 virus; however, because cross-reactivity between serotypes occurs in these assays, this finding was not conclusive (6).
Dr. Dhikusooka is a veterinarian undertaking a PhD at Makerere University, Uganda, in a collaborative research program with the DTU National Veterinary Institute, Denmark. His research interests include epidemiology and dynamics of disease in livestock.


We are grateful for excellent technical assistance from Jani Christiansen, Jane Borch, and Inge Nielsen. We also are grateful to Martin Esau and Eugene Arinaitwe for the field work.
We thank the Uganda Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries and the supervisory boards at Department of Environmental Management, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Makerere University, for the support given to work on FMD in Uganda. This study was funded by the Danish International Development Agency under the Transboundary Animal Diseases in East Africa Project. The authors have no competing interests.
The work presented here is part of a study clarifying the role played by cattle in maintaining the spread of FMDV in Uganda.


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Suggested citation for this article: Dhikusooka MT, Tjørnehøj K, Ayebazibwe C, Namatovu A, Ruhweza S, Siegismund HR, et al. Foot-and-mouth disease virus serotype SAT 3 in long-horned Ankole calf, Uganda. Emerg Infect Dis [Internet]. 2015 Jan [date cited]. http://dx.doi.org/10.3201/eid2101.140995
DOI: 10.3201/eid2101.140995

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