Estimates for local and movement-based transmission of bovine tuberculosis in British cattle

Green, Darren M, Kiss, István Z, Mitchell, Andrew P and Kao, Rowland R (2008) Estimates for local and movement-based transmission of bovine tuberculosis in British cattle. Proceedings B: Biological Sciences, 275 (1638). 1001 - 1005. ISSN 1471-2954

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Both badgers and livestock movements have been implicated in contributing to the ongoing epidemic of bovine tuberculosis (BTB) in British cattle. However, the relative contributions of these and other causes are not well quantified. We used cattle movement data to construct an individual (premises)-based model of BTB spread within Great Britain, accounting for spread due to recorded cattle movements and other causes. Outbreak data for 2004 were best explained by a model attributing 16% of herd infections directly to cattle movements, and a further 9% unexplained, potentially including spread from unrecorded movements. The best-fit model assumed low levels of cattle-to-cattle transmission. The remaining 75% of infection was attributed to local effects within specific high-risk areas. Annual and biennial testing is mandatory for herds deemed at high risk of infection, as is pre-movement testing from such herds. The herds identified as high risk in 2004 by our model are in broad agreement with those officially designated as such at that time. However, border areas at the edges of high-risk regions are different, suggesting possible areas that should be targeted to prevent further geographical spread of disease. With these areas expanding rapidly over the last decade, their close surveillance is important to both identify infected herds quickly, and limit their further growth.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences > Mathematics
Depositing User: Istvan Kiss
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 21:20
Last Modified: 22 May 2012 16:08
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