Submitted to: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/9/2009
Publication Date: 11/15/2009
Citation: Ridpath, J.F., Fulton, R.W. 2009. Knowledge Gaps Impacting the Development of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus Control Programs in the United States. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association. 235(10):1171-1179.
Interpretive Summary: Infections with bovine viral diarrhea viruses (BVDV) result in significant losses for beef and dairy producers worldwide. The United States is falling behind worldwide efforts to eradicate BVDV. Current control efforts in the U.S. are market driven by producers rather than government mandated. These measures tend to be targeted on removal of BVDV persistently infected animals within a herd or production unit rather than a systematic eradication of BVDV infections. This manuscript discusses questions that researchers need to answer before producers can make informed decisions regarding the feasibility of a U.S. BVDV eradication program.
Technical Abstract: This paper identifies knowledge gaps that impact on the design of programs to control and or eradicate bovine viral diarrhea viruses (BVDV) in the United States. Currently there are several voluntary regional BVDV control programs in place. These control programs are aimed at the removal of animals persistently infected with BVDV from herds and feedlots. There is much discussion among researchers and producers as to the feasibility of BVDV eradication from U.S. cattle populations. Eradication is defined as "The purposeful reduction of specific disease prevalence to the point of continuous absence of transmission within a specified area by means of a time limited campaign." Thus, while the cost of the voluntary controls measures now in effect require continuous testing, eradication would involve a time-limited investment. The question facing the U.S. is whether this investment is practical and cost effect. Providing the information necessary to answer this question will require research efforts aimed at elucidating the economics of BVDV infections, establishing the efficacy of available vaccines and diagnostics, determining the impact of BVDV infections in wildlife and defining motivations and obstacles affecting producer compliance.