Now showing 1 - 3 of 3
  • Publication
    The effect of risk-based trading and within-herd measures on Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis spread within and between Irish dairy herds
    Johne’s disease (bovine paratuberculosis) is an endemic disease caused by Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis (Map). Map is transmitted between herds primarily through movement of infected but undetected animals. Within infected herds, possible control strategies include improving herd hygiene by reducing calf exposure to faeces from cows, reducing stress in cows resulting in a longer latently infected period where shedding is minimal, or culling highly test-positive cows soon after detection. Risk-based trading can be a strategy to reduce the risk that Map spreads between herds. Our objective was to assess whether within-herd measures combined with risk-based trading could effectively control Map spread within and between dairy cattle herds in Ireland. We used a stochastic individual-based and between-herd mechanistic epidemiological model to simulate Map transmission. Movement and herd demographic data were available from 1st January 2009–31st December 2018. In total, 13,353 herds, with 4,494,768 dairy female animals, and 72,991 bulls were included in our dataset. The movement dataset consisted of 2,304,149 animal movements. For each herd, a weekly indicator was calculated that reflected the probability that the herd was free from infection. The indicator value increased when a herd tested negative, decreased when animals were introduced into a herd, and became 0 when a herd tested positive. Based on this indicator value, four Johne’s assurance statuses were distinguished: A) ≥ 0.7 – 1.0, B) ≥ 0.3 – < 0.7, C) > 0.0 – < 0.3, and D) 0.0. A is the highest and D the lowest Johne’s assurance status. With risk-based trading some of the observed movements between herds were redirected based on Johne’s assurance status with the aim of reducing the risk that a non-infected herd acquired an infected animal. Risk-based trading effectively reduced the increase in herd prevalence over a 10-year-period in Ireland: from 50% without risk-based trading to 42% with risk-based trading in the metapopulation only, and 26% when external purchases were risk-based as well. However, for risk-based trading to be effective, a high percentage of dairy herds had to participate. The most important within-herd measures were improved herd hygiene and early culling of highly infectious cows. These measures reduced both herd and within-herd prevalence compared to the reference scenario. Combining risk-based trading with within-herd measures reduced within-herd prevalence even more effectively.
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  • Publication
    The Irish Johne’s Control Programme
    The Irish Johne’s Control Programme (IJCP) provides a long-term approach to the voluntary control of Johne’s disease (JD) in Ireland, strongly supported by Irish cattle industry leadership. It leverages the establishment of Animal Health Ireland for control of animal diseases not regulated by the European Union. The IJCP has four objectives: facilitate protection against spread of JD to uninfected farms; reduce the level of infection when present; assure markets of JD control in Ireland; and improve calf health and farm biosecurity. Key IJCP elements are an annual veterinary risk assessment and management plan (VRAMP), annual whole herd test (WHT) by ELISA on blood or milk samples with ancillary faecal PCR testing of ELISA reactors, and Targeted Advisory Service on Animal Health (TASAH) investigations of infected herds. There are pathways for assurance of herds with continuing negative tests and for management of test-positive herds. Herdowners are responsible for on-farm activities, and specifically-trained (approved) veterinary practitioners have a pivotal role as technical advisors and service providers. The programme is supported by training of veterinarians, performance of testing in designated laboratories, documentation of policies and procedures, innovative data management for herd and test activities and for programme administration, training, and broad communication and awareness activities. Tools and systems are refined to address emerging issues and enhance the value of the programme. An Implementation: Group comprising industry, government and technical leaders sets strategic direction and policy, advised by a Technical Working Group. Shared funding responsibilities are agreed by key stakeholders until 2022 to support herds in the programme to complete requirements. Herd registrations have increased steadily to exceed 1,800. National bulk tank milk surveillance is also being deployed to identify and recruit test-positive herds with the expectation that they have a relatively high proportion of seropositive animals. The programme will continue to innovate and improve to meet farmer and industry needs.
      109Scopus© Citations 8
  • Publication
    Model to simulate the spread of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (Map) within and between herds via trade movements between dairy herds
    Model to simulate the spread of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (Map) within and between herds via trade movements between dairy herds. Control measures can be applied: - trade movements rewiring to foster exchanges between herds of the same status (according to within-herd prevalence) (w option) - hygiene, by decreasing calf exposure to bacterial environment (e option) - early culling of high shedders (k option). Model is mechanistic (infection dynamics) and data-driven (movements and demography), stochastic, discrete-time and individual-based. Requirements: C++ compiler: g++ (tested version: 7.2.0) => sudo apt install g++. Warning: standard library C++11 is required. tclap (version 1.2.1): sudo apt install libtclap-dev.
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