Submitted to: Asia Pacific Poultry Health Conference
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: September 28, 1998
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: One of the most economically devastating infectious diseases of poultry is Marek's disease (MD), caused by Marek's disease virus (MDV). Despite the use of a variety of licensed vaccines, the problem of MD continues to rank high among the avian diseases encountered in the poultry industry. One reason is that industry typically expects vaccines to maintain condemnation nrates of 0.05 or even 0.01. This is probably an unreasonable expectation. An effective control strategy requres a multi-pronged approach. Development of a new effort needs to be directed at breeding lines of chickens that are resistant to MD. We already know that among different chicken lines, resistance to MD and their responses to vaccines may be correlated with the B haplotype. This information should form the basis for breeding future lines of semi-resistant chickens. Finally, any effective control strategy must reduce exposure to MDV through better management practives. An "all-in all-out" management procedure together with the removal of used litter are two simple procedures to reduce early exposure to MDV. Only through a combination of approaches can we realistically expect to control MD.