Risk factors for the between-herd spread of ...



Title Risk factors for the between-herd spread of Mycobacterium bovis in Canadian cattle and cervids between 1985 and 1994
Author(s) F. A. Munroe, Ian R. Dohoo, W. B. McNab, Elizabeth Spangler
Journal Preventive Veterinary Medicine
Date 1999
Volume 41
Issue 2-3
Start page 119
End page 133
Abstract Microorganisms of the genus Mycobacterium cause tuberculosis in many animal species including humans. Generally, Mycobacterium bovis (M. bovis) infects cattle and cervids, but it has the potential to infect virtually all species of mammals. This study examined and analysed the data from the nine outbreaks of tuberculosis in Canadian cattle and cervids from 1985 to 1994. For the purposes of this study, a positive herd was one with at least one culture-positive animal. A reactor herd had at least one animal which was positive or suspicious on a mid-cervical, comparative cervical, or gross or histopathologic test for tuberculosis. Herd classification was either reactor/positive or negative. Data for the study were collected from the outbreak records in the Regional or District offices of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Logistic regression was used to study spread of tuberculosis between herds. Two risk factors were identified: increasing herd size; and, the reason why a herd was investigated as part of the outbreak. This latter factor was interpreted as a surrogate measure for the nature of contact between the study herd and other potentially infected herds in the outbreak. Increasing herd size was associated with an increased risk of being positive for tuberculosis with herds of 16-35, 36-80, and >80 animals having odds ratios of 2.9, 5.8, and 9.3, respectively, when compared to a herd size of <16 animals (p < 0.001). When compared to perimeter testing (i.e. testing herds within a specified radius of an infected herd), all other reasons for investigation had higher odds ratios (p < 0.001). These odds ratios were 57.8 for traceout herds (i.e. herds which had purchased animal(s) from a reactor/positive herd), 31.8 for herds with pasture or fence-line contact with a reactor/positive herd, and 14.9 for traceback herds (i.e. herds which had been a source of animals for reactor/positive herd(s)).

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