Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: August 18, 2011
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a disease of animals and humans that occurs in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. A Phlebovirus in the family Bunyaviridae causes the disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes. Epidemics occur during years of unusually heavy rainfall that assessment models are being developed to predict risk of outbreaks. Domestic cattle, sheep and goats are highly susceptible to infection, which can result in high mortality in young animals and increased abortion in adults. The recent outbreaks in Mauritania and the potential involvement of Camels and Camelids were discussed. Unapparent infections are quite common in wild ruminants. Infection in humans causes influenza-like symptoms, but can lead to severe complications, including retinopathy, blindness and even death. An international team has been working to develop diagnostic that do not pose a health risk to the operator that can be used for the early detection of an introduction of RVF into North America. These new diagnostic tools were reviewed and current status of RVF globally was discussed.