Taenia multiceps coenurosis in Tanzania: a major and under-recognised livestock disease problem in pastoral communities

Hughes, E. C. et al. (2019) Taenia multiceps coenurosis in Tanzania: a major and under-recognised livestock disease problem in pastoral communities. Veterinary Record, 184(6), 191. (doi: 10.1136/vr.105186) (PMID:30683735)

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A neurological syndrome of small ruminants, known locally as ‘ormilo’, has been reported among pastoralist livestock keepers in Tanzania. This study was carried out in four affected pastoral communities to determine the prevalence and associated risk factors, characterise the clinical signs and investigate the aetiology of the syndrome. Questionnaires were administered at all households (n=480) within four study villages. Overall, 94 per cent of households reported at least one case in the previous 12 months. By village, the individual-level 12-month period prevalence ranged from 11 per cent to 34 per cent, equivalent to about 10,000 small ruminants across the four villages. Thirty-eight households were randomly selected for further investigation. Proprioceptive deficits and weakness were the most commonly observed clinical signs in affected animals. Brain and spinal cord cysts consistent with Taenia multiceps infection were detected in 32 (82 per cent) of 39 affected animals selected for postmortem examination. Feeding small ruminant brains to dogs was identified as an important risk factor for the syndrome, even in households that did not own dogs. This study confirms cerebral coenurosis as a major cause of small ruminant neurological disease in northern Tanzania and highlights the urgent need for further investigation to quantify the disease burden and to identify and implement control measures.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Lankester, Dr Felix and Allan, Dr Kathryn and De Jong, Ms Rosanne and De Glanville, Dr William and Cleaveland, Professor Sarah and Davis, Dr Alicia and Hughes, Ms Ellen and Carter, Mr Ryan and Claxton, Dr John
Authors: Hughes, E. C., Kibona, T. K., de Glanville, W. A., Lankester, F., Davis, A., Carter, R. W., de Jong, R. M.F., Nyasebwa, O. M., Claxton, J. R., Cleaveland, S., and Allan, K. J.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Infection & Immunity
College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Journal Name:Veterinary Record
Publisher:BMJ Publishing Group
ISSN (Online):2042-7670
Published Online:25 January 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 British Veterinary Association
First Published:First published in Veterinary Record 2019
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy
Data DOI:10.5525/gla.researchdata.686

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
627871Social, economic and environmental drivers of zoonoses in Tanzania (SEEDZ)Sarah CleavelandBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)BB/L018926/1RI BIODIVERSITY ANIMAL HEALTH & COMPMED
3024080Sustainable Interventions for an Emerging Livestock Disease Problem in East AfricaSarah CleavelandBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)BB/R020027/1Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine