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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Comparison of Four Serological Assays and Culture to Determine Tuberculosis Infection in Captive Elephants in Nepal)

item Mikota, Susan
item Miller, Michele
item Dumonceaux, Genevieve
item Giri, Kamal
item Gairhe, Kamal
item Hamilton, Karin
item Paudel, Sarad
item Lyaschshenko, Konstantin
item Larsen, R
item Payeur, Janet
item Waters, Wade
item Kaufman, Gretchen

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/20/2007
Publication Date: 10/20/2007
Citation: Mikota, S.K., Miller, M., Dumonceaux, G., Giri, K., Gairhe, K., Hamilton, K., Paudel, S., Lyaschshenko, K., Larsen, R.S., Payeur, J., Waters, W.R., Kaufman, G. 2007. Comparison of Four Serological Assays and Culture to Determine Tuberculosis Infection in Captive Elephants in Nepal [abstract]. American Association of Zoo Veterinarians. p. 25.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Our team conducted the first comprehensive range country elephant TB survey in January 2006. This collaboration encompassed the work of Dr. Kamal Giri in fulfillment of his M.V.Sc degree at the Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science; the support of the Department of National Parks and Conservation and Tufts Center for Conservation Medicine; and the ongoing Elephant TB Initiative of Elephant Care International. We examined 120 captive elephants and compared results of four serological tests (ElephantTB Stat-Pak®, MultiAntigen Print ImmunoAssay (MAPIA)™, and Immunoblot) with culture results from laboratories in Nepal and the U.S. A total of 289 culture samples were collected from 119 elephants; blood was collected from 115 elephants. Cultures were processed at the National Tuberculosis Center (Nepal) and the National Veterinary Services Laboratories (USA). Results of culture (4 positive), ElephantTB Stat-Pak® and MAPIA 6 positive; 9 suspect), ELISA (8 positive; 2 suspect) and Immunoblot (0 positive) were evaluated to place elephants into the following categories: 1) high risk: tests suggest or confirm TB 2) low risk: elephants are test negative or equivocal 3) undetermined risk: no blood sample obtained Results suggest an approximate prevalence of 13%, comparable to the prevalence among Asian elephants in the U.S. As a preliminary management strategy, we recommended segregation of high risk elephants, repeat testing of elephants with equivocal results, screening all remaining captive elephants in Nepal, and TB screening of all mahouts. Acknowledgments: The authors gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of the Nepal Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation, and support from the Abraham Foundation, the Mazuri Fund, the Walter J. Ernst Memorial Fund, the American Veterinary Medical Foundation, and the Dodge Foundation.

Last Modified: 05/23/2017
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