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African horse sickness in Spain: New tools for its surveillance and control

Conference in Workshop PICATA-CEI Campus Moncloa

February 12nd, 2013

Sanchez-Matamoros A., Sanchez-Vizcaino JM. and Iglesias E.

African Horse Sickness (AHS) is one of the most severe viral diseases affecting equidae, which is transmitted by species Culicoides genus [1]. This disease is included on the OIE list due to its severity, rapid spread and the important socio-economic impact in the affected regions. Its causal agent is AHS virus (AHSV), which belongs to Orbivirus genus, such as Bluetongue virus (BTV). Nowadays, nine different AHSV serotypes have been serologically identified. Its endemic distribution is limited to Sub-Saharian Africa and Yemen, but has periodically caused outbreaks in other areas where the vector-borne is adapted, such as Spain [1, 2]. Therefore, global warming, recent experience with BTV and Schmallenberg, and also the presence of new Culicoides species in Europe indicate that, at the moment, AHS can be considered a reemergent disease of special concern in Europe [3]. Spain is one of the European countries with high risk for the re-introduction and spread of the disease in relation with the main risk factors of AHSV. It is the second largest country in Europe in terms of equidae census with animals of high economic and genetic value. In addition, Spain had reported twice the disease, [2] having a capable culicoide population to spread the disease. These circumstances require the application of new epidemiological tools for qualitative
assessment and spatial analysis of AHSV in Spain, which are essential to improve the surveillance and control measures against the disease. These measures are based on early detection with effective diagnosis assay and adequate control methods, especially vaccination [2]. The knowledge of the immunology of the animals against this disease is crucial to develop new control methods. Therefore, the study of immune response against AHS is essential to reveal more information about host defense and allow the development of new tools to enhance
the control measures in dealing with equidae production needs. The present study provides new tools for surveillance and control of AHS integrating the epidemiological and immunological aspects of the disease. We analysed the serotypes at highest risk to be re-introduced and the high suitable areas for AHS outbreaks in equine
population in Spain. Therefore, we evaluated the innate and adaptive immune response against AHS infection


Universidad ComplutenseServicio de Inmunología Viral y Medicina Preventiva (SUAT). Centro de Vigilancia Sanitaria Veterinaria (VISAVET). Universidad Complutense (UCM).

Universidad ComplutenseDepartamento de Sanidad Animal. Facultad de Veterinaria. Universidad Complutense (UCM).

Link to Workshop PICATA-CEI Campus Moncloa


Workshop PICATA-CEI Campus Moncloa

Workshop PICATA-CEI Campus Moncloa
February 12nd-14th, 2013

TITLE: African horse sickness in Spain: New tools for its surveillance and control

TYPE: Oral communication

AUTHORS: Sanchez-Matamoros A., Sanchez-Vizcaino JM. and Iglesias E.


José Manuel Sánchez-Vizcaíno Rodríguez

DATE: February 12nd, 2013


Sanchez-Matamoros A., Sanchez-Vizcaino JM. and Iglesias E. African horse sickness in Spain: New tools for its surveillance and control. Workshop PICATA-CEI Campus Moncloa, CEI Campus Moncloa, Madrid, Spain, February 12nd, 2013. (Oral communication)