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Bluetongue UK - Update

05 June 2008

UK - A new born calf has been declared as a case. Its mother was positive last autumn and is still on the same farm. This calf is positive to PCR and also has high levels of antibody as would be expected. It is not known if the calf is infective and the Institute of Animal Health are investigating this and other calves but the research is likely to take some time.
This placental transmission is not characteristic of BTV but could be a characteristic of BTV 8 in Northern Europe. This placental transmission has caused a new EU regulation on movement of females from the RZ to the Free Area and whilst this regulation is changed on a regular basis the NBA has not reproduced it for you; for planning purposes work on the basis that females over 3 months of age will not be allowed to move to the Free Area regardless of vaccination status. This is because of the difficulty of proving that the animal was not in calf when vaccinated.

Intervet have delivered the first 3million doses, which have been distributed in the PZ, ahead of schedule and we expect regular delivery to continue. The next release of vaccine will cause an expansion of the PZ and this may occur without warning. (We do not know when VMD will release batches for use and have to move quickly to get vaccine to farms and into animals so that it does what it was bought for).

TheCattleSite News Desk


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