Newcastle Disease

NCD

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Changed on: 08.04.2019
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Newcastle disease (NCD) is a viral disease found in domestic and wild avian species that leads to a high morbidity and mortality rate in birds carrying the virus. The pathogen of NCD is the Newcastle disease virus (NDV), a single-strand RNA virus of the family Paramyxoviridae.

NDV has been allocated to the new genus Avulavirus; prior to its reclassification it used to be a member of the genus Rubulavirus, which also included the pathogens for mumps in humans and kennel cough in dogs. The strains are categorised in apathogenic, lentogenic (mildly virulent), meogenic (intermediate virulence) and velogenic (highly virulent). NCD is endemic to most countries.

All bird species can suffer from Newcastle disease infections.

Newcastle disease (NCD) is a viral disease found in domestic and wild avian species that leads to a high morbidity and mortality rate in birds carrying the virus. The pathogen of NCD is the Newcastle disease virus (NDV), a single-strand RNA virus of the family Paramyxoviridae.

NDV has been allocated to the new genus Avulavirus; prior to its reclassification it used to be a member of the genus Rubulavirus, which also included the pathogens for mumps in humans and kennel cough in dogs. The strains are categorised in apathogenic, lentogenic (mildly virulent), meogenic (intermediate virulence) and velogenic (highly virulent). NCD is endemic to most countries.

All bird species can suffer from Newcastle disease infections.

Transmission

NDV is excreted in large quantities via faeces, eye, nose and throat secretions and all other body fluids. The pathogen spreads directly from animal to animal and indirectly via all equipment, barn dust and air, footwear, vehicles and also via infected eggs.

Symptoms

The incubation period is 4 to 7 days; the symptoms depend on the virulence of the pathogen:
The following symptoms can occur at a high or intermediate virulence level: a drastic decline in egg laying, fever, apathy, loss of appetite, cold-like symptoms, respiratory problems, diarrhoea, compromised central nervous system (turning of head), and high mortality.

In cases in which the virulence is mild, there are only mild or no symptoms. From a pathological perspective, dot-shaped haemorrhages can be found on the gastric mucosa, in particular around the passages of the gastric gland.

The virus could cause conjunctivitis in humans in individual cases.

 

 

Combating NCD

NCD must be reported to the authorities. The local, government veterinarian must be notified of the presence of clinically suspicious symptoms. He/she will then send samples to the laboratory for further diagnosis. Only highly pathogenic virus strains with an intracerebral pathogenicity index (ICPU) over 0.7 are reported as epidemics. The regulations for poultry differ from those for domestic pigeons (carrier pigeons). Prophylactic inoculation is permitted in Austria and is carried out on chickens, turkeys and pigeons (carrier pigeons and breeding pigeons).

 

 

 

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