Risk factors associated with small-ruminant lentiviruses in sheepfold buildings
More details
Hide details
University of Life Sciences, Lublin, Poland
Department of Biochemistry, National Veterinary Research Institute, Pulawy, Poland
Department of Hygiene of Animal Feedingstuffs, National Veterinary Research Institute, Pulawy, Poland
Corresponding author
Wiktor Bojar   

University of Life Sciences in Lublin\n20-950 Lublin, Poland, ul Akademicka 13, 20-950 Lublin, Poland
Ann Agric Environ Med. 2018;25(3):383-387
Small-ruminant lentivirus (SRLV) infection is widespread across Europe. It causes substantial economic losses in sheep breeding. The main route of SRLV infection is through the mother’s milk, especially colostrum However, infection can also occur via contact between infected and healthy animals. It should be noted that the mechanisms of contact infection are still relatively poorly understood. The virus can also spread through a flock via an aerogenic mechanism.

Due to the increased risk of SRLV infection in sheep bred in an alcove system, this study sought to define the effect of various selected factors associated with alcove breeding on the frequency of SRLV infection in sheep.

Material and methods:
Risk factors associated with small-ruminant lentivirus (SRLV) infection were analyzed among flocks of sheep in central-eastern Poland. Ninety-eight sheep flocks were selected for detailed investigation and included 6,470 ewes and 15 breeds and lines. Serologic testing of blood samples was used to identify infected animals and evaluate the epidemiologic status of particular flocks. Specific antibodies for Maedi Visna Virus (MVV) were detected via ELISA. Questionnaires were used to gather information concerning risk factors.

The study’s results indicate that factors associated with environmental conditions under which sheep are kept play a significant role in determining the risk of SRLV infection.

Special attention should be focused on airborne contamination associated with the technologies used in sheep breeding. Breeding technologies that limit airborne contamination in farm buildings should be employed. In developing programmes to eliminate SLRV in sheep flocks, improvement of zoohygenic conditions should also be considered.

Arsenault J, Dubreuil P, Girard CH, Simard C, Belanger D. Maedi-visna impact on productivity in Quebeck sheep flocks (Canada). Prev Vet Med. 2003; 50: 125–137.
Junkuszew A. Growth and slaughter value of lambs from a maedi visna virus infected sheep flock. Monograph Rozprawy Naukowe UP w Lublinie 344 WUP Lublin 2010.
Lipecka Cz, Kuźmak J, Junkuszew A, Kozaczyńska B, Gruszecki TM. The Relations between breed and age associated susceptibility/resistance of sheep infection with meadi visna virus (MVV). Arch Tierz. Dummerstorf 2006; 49; 160–165.
Narayan O, Cork LC. Lentiviral diseases of sheep and goats: Chronic pneumonia leukoencephalomyelitis and arthritis. Rev Infect Dis. 1985; 7: 89 –98.
Lujan L, Begara I, Collie DDS, Watt NJ.. Ovine lentivirus (maedi-visna virus) protein expression in sheep alveolar macrophages. Vet Path. 1994; 31: 695–703.
Blacklaws BA, Berriatua E, Torsteinsdottir S, Watt NJ, de Andres D, Klein D, at al. Transmission of small ruminant lentiviruses. Vet Microbiol. 2004; 101: 199–208.
Reina R, Berriatua E, Lujan L, Juste R, Sanchez A, de Andres D, Amorena B. Prevention strategies against small ruminant lentiviruses: An update. Vet J. 2009; 182: 31–37.
Fisher JW, Menzies PI. Cost of a Maedi Visna Flock Certification Program and the Changes in Productivity and Economic Return. Sheep & Goat Res J. 2005; 20: 17–24.
Ganter M. Veterinary consultancy and health schemes in sheep: Experiences and reflections from a local German outlook. Small Ruminant Res. 2008; 76: 55–67.
Brodie S, Concha-Bermejillo A, Snowder G, Demartini J. Current concepts in the epizootiology, diagnosis and economic importance of ovine progressive pneumonia in North America. Small Ruminant Res. 1998; 27: 1–17.
Straub O. Maedi-visna virus infection in sheep. History and present knowledge. Comp Immune Microbiol Infec Dis. 2004; 27: 1–5.
Sigurdsson B, Palsson PA, Tryggvadottir A. Transmission experiments with maedi. J Infect Dis. 1953; 93: 166–175.
Houwers DJ, Van der Molen, EJ. A five year serological survey of natural transmission of maedi-visna virus in flock of completed with postmortem investigation. J Vet Med. 1987; 34: 421–431.
Junkuszew A, Lipecka Cz, Gruszecki TM, Kuźmak J, Bojar W, Olech M, at al. Maedi-visna virus (MVV) in sheep flocks – the risks and scale of the problem. Animal Production Review. 2010; 9: 22–26.
Leginagoikoa I, Juste RA, Barandika J, Amorena B, De Andres D, Lujan L, Badiola J, Berriatua E. Extensive rearing hinders maedi–visna virus (MVV) infection in sheep. Vet Res. 2006; 37: 767–778.
Cochran WG. Sampling Techniques, 3rd Edition, Wiley. 1977.
Stevenson M. An Introduction to Veterinary Epidemiology. EpiCentre, IVABS, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand. 2006; 1- 90.
Lohr SL. Sampling: Design and Analysis. Second edition. Cengage Learning Inc. Boston, 2009; pp 608.
Stevenson M, Heuer C. Functions for analysing epidemiological data. Package ‘epiR’. EpiCentre, IVABS, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand. 2012; 1–74.
Rothman KJ. Epidemiology An Introduction. Oxford University Press, London. 2002; 130–143.
Jewell NP. Statistics for Epidemiology. Chapman & Hall/CRC. London. 2004; 84 – 85.
Keen J, Hungerford L, Wittum T, Kwang J, Littledike ED. Rick factors for seroprevalence of ovine lentivirus in breeding ewe flocks in Nebraska USA. Prev Vet Med. 1997; 30: 81–94.
Dungu B, Vorster J, Bath GF, Verwoerd DW. The effect of a natural maedi-visna virus infection on the productivity of South African sheep Onderstepoort. J Vet Res. 2000; 67: 87–96.
Andersen CI, von Essen SG, Smith LM., Spencer J, Jolie R, Donham KJ. Respiratory symptoms and airway obstruction in swine veterinarians: A persistent problem. Am J Ind Med. 2004; 46: 386–392.
Peterhans E, Greenland T, Badiola J, Harkiss G, Bertoni G, Amorena B, at al. Routes of transmission and consequences of small ruminant lentiviruses (SRLVs) infection and eradication schemes. Vet Res. 2004; 35: 257–274.
Junkuszew A, Milerski M, Bojar W, Szczepaniak K, Le Scouarnec J, Tomczuk K, at al. Effect of various antiparasitic treatments on lamb growth and mortality. Small Ruminant Res. 2015; 123: 305–312.
Papanastasiou DK, Fidaros D, Bartzanas T, Kittas C. Monitoring particulate matter levels and climate conditions in a Greek sheep and goat livestock building. Environ Monit Assess. 2011; 183: 285–296.
Cambra-López M, Aarnink AJA, Zhao Y, Calvet S, Torres AG. Airborne particulate matter from livestock production systems: A review of an air pollution problem. Environ Pollut. 2010; 158: 1–17.
Bakutis B, Monstviliene E, Januskeviciene G. Analyses of airborne contamination with bacteria, endotoxins and dust in livestock barns and poultry houses. Acta Vet Brno. 2004; 73: 283–289.
Razote EB, Maghirang RG, Seitz LM, Jeon IJ. Characterization of volatile organic compounds on airborne dust in a swine finishing barn. T ASAE. 2004; 47: 1231–1238.
Melbostad E, Eduard W, Magnus P. Chronic bronchitis in farmers. Scand J Work Env Hea. 1997; 23: 271–280.
Radon K, Weber C, Iversen M, Danuser B, Pedersen S, Nowak D. Exposure assessment and lung function in pig and poultry farmers. Occup Environ Med. 2001; 58: 405–410.
Danuser B, Weber C, Künzli N, Schindler C, Nowak D. Respiratory symptoms in Swiss farmers: An epidemiological study of risk factors. Am J Ind Med. 2001; 39: 410–418.
Donham KJ. Association of environmental air contaminants with disease and productivity in swine. Am J Vet Res 1991; 52: 1723– 1730.
Valavanidis A, Fiotakis K, Vlachogianni T. Airborne particulate matter and human health: toxicological assessment and importance of size and composition of particles for oxidative damage and carcinogenic mechanisms. J Environ Sci Heal C. 2008; 26: 339–362.
Doig, PA, Willoughby DVM. Response of swine to atmospheric ammonia and organic dust. JAVMA-J Am Vet Med A. 1971; 159(11): 1353- 1361.
Cox CS, Wathes CM, Bioaerosols Handbook. New York: Lewis. 1995.
Takai H, Pedersen S, Johnsen JO, Metz JHM, Groot Koerkamp PWG, Uenk GH, et al. Concentrations and emissions of airborne dust in livestock buildings in northern Europe. J Agr Eng Res. 1998; 70: 59–77.
Seppänen O, Kurnitski J. Moisture control and ventilation. In: WHO Guidelines for Indoor Air Quality -Dampness and Mould. Geneva: World Health Organization. 2009; 31–61.
Bojar W, Junkuszew A. The ecological consciousness of the individuals who use the products containing asbestos in the rual households presented on the case study from three localities within Serokomla municipality. In: Ewa Bojar et al, editors. Environmental aspects of regional development: asbestos regional management – diagnosis and perspectives. Toruń: TNOiK. 2010; 81–90.
Wagner JC, Berry G, Skidmore JW, Timbrell V. 1974. The Effects of the Inhalation of Asbestos in Rats. Br J Cancer. 1974; 29(3): 252–269.
Journals System - logo
Scroll to top