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The last hurdles towards Rift Valley Fever control

Report on the ad hoc workshop on the current state of Rift Valley fever vaccine and diagnostics development – Rome, 5–7 March 2014













FAO. 2015. The last hurdles towards Rift Valley Fever control. Report on the Ad hoc workshop on the current state of Rift Valley fever vaccine and diagnostics development – Rome, 5–7 March 2014. FAO Animal Production and Health Report No. 9. Rome, Italy.


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    Rift Valley fever is one of the most significant zoonotic disease problems in Africa. The occurrence of the highly fatal haemorrhagic human disease syndrome, similar to Ebola and other haemorrhagic fevers, generates a degree of panic among the human populations at risk. RVF is highly contagious for humans if animals are viraemic at the time of slaughtering. In susceptible livestock populations, it is responsible for large numbers of abortions and stillbirths. However, one of RVF’s greatest impacts is upon trade in livestock. Even if the disease tends to disappear after epizootics, livestock bans may last for several years, severely affecting the livelihood of pastoralists. This manual aims at helping staff from veterinary services and laboratories to recognize the disease rapidly when it occurs. It provides an overview of the disease, describes clinical signs and the most important differential diagnosis, and guides the user on how to proceed if a case of RV F is suspected. The manual is part of a series prepared by FAO’s Emergency System for Transboundary Animal and Plant Pests and Diseases (EMPRES) livestock unit, as an aid to emergency preparedness for the major transboundary diseases of livestock.
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    Rift Valley fever vaccine development, progress and constraints
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    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an acute arthropod-borne infection first recognized in Kenya in 1931. Today, the RVF virus has been found in countries across Africa, the Arabian Peninsula and islands in the Indian Ocean, including Madagascar, Comores and Mayotte. This virus has a strong capacity to spread to previously unaffected areas, thanks to its broad host range and ability to be transmitted by at least 30 different mosquito species ¿some of which are found in Europe, Australasia and the America s. Outbreaks following first incursions of RVF can result in explosive epidemics involving both humans and livestock.The control of RVF outbreaks includes vaccination of susceptible animals. Two vaccines are currently available; however, each has significant drawbacks. There is a widely recognized need to develop safer and more efficacious vaccines for animals. Rift Valley fever vaccine development, progress and constraints is the report of an international expert workshop that brought together leading experts and policy-makers in RVF virology, epidemiology and vaccine development. The workshop objective was to gain consensus and make recommendations on the desired features of novel veterinary RVF virus vaccines, and to explore how incentives can be established to assure that these vaccines come to market.
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    Preparation of Rift Valley fever (RVF) contingency plans (2003) 2002
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    Emergency preparedness and contingency planning are key elements for the early detection and control of disease outbreaks of a transboundary nature. While FAO Animal Health Manual No. 6 provides general principles regarding the setting up of emergency preparedness plans, this manula provides information on the nature of Rift Valley fever (RVF), and the principles of, and strategic options for, the prevention and control of RVF. It provides guidelines for individual countires that are threatened by RVF to formulate their overall national policy on control and eradication of a possible incursion of the disease. The manual identifies personnel as well as equipment and other facilities that are needed in a national RVF contingency plan. An outline of the suggested format and contents of a national RVF contingency plan is also provided as a guide and should be modified to suit the needs of, and circumstances that exist in, individual countries.

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