ArticlePDF AvailableLiterature Review

Abstract and Figures

Poverty is now at the heart of development discourse; we discuss how it is measured and understood. We next consider the negative and positive impacts of livestock on pro-poor development. Taking a value-chain approach that includes keepers, users and eaters of livestock, we identify diseases that are road blocks on the 'three livestock pathways out of poverty'. We discuss livestock impacts on poverty reduction and review attempts to prioritize the livestock diseases relevant to the poor. We make suggestions for metrics that better measure disease impact and show the benefits of more rigorous evaluation before reviewing recent attempts to measure the importance of disease to the poor. High impact of a disease does not guarantee high benefits from its control; other factors must be taken into consideration, including technical feasibility and political desirability. We conclude by considering how we might better understand and exploit the roles of livestock and improved animal health by posing three speculative questions on the impact of livestock diseases and their control on global poverty: how can understanding livestock and poverty links help disease control?; if global poverty reduction was the aim of livestock disease control, how would it differ from the current model?; and how much of the impact of livestock disease on poverty is due to disease control policy rather than disease itself?
Content may be subject to copyright.
The impacts of livestock diseases and
their control on growth and development
processes that are pro-poor
Brian Perry1,*and Delia Grace2
College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, University of Edinburgh, PO Box 437, Gilgil 20116, Kenya
International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI ), PO Box 30709, Nairobi 00100, Kenya
Poverty is now at the heart of development discourse; we discuss how it is measured and under-
stood. We next consider the negative and positive impacts of livestock on pro-poor development.
Taking a value-chain approach that includes keepers, users and eaters of livestock, we identify
diseases that are road blocks on the ‘three livestock pathways out of poverty’. We discuss livestock
impacts on poverty reduction and review attempts to prioritize the livestock diseases relevant to the
poor. We make suggestions for metrics that better measure disease impact and show the benefits of
more rigorous evaluation before reviewing recent attempts to measure the importance of disease to
the poor. High impact of a disease does not guarantee high benefits from its control; other factors
must be taken into consideration, including technical feasibility and political desirability. We
conclude by considering how we might better understand and exploit the roles of livestock and
improved animal health by posing three speculative questions on the impact of livestock diseases
and their control on global poverty: how can understanding livestock and poverty links help disease
control?; if global poverty reduction was the aim of livestock disease control, how would it differ
from the current model?; and how much of the impact of livestock disease on poverty is due to dis-
ease control policy rather than disease itself?
Keywords: livestock; global poverty; poverty reduction; disease impact
We start with an overview of global poverty and of
the connections between poverty and livestock. We
go on to explore impacts of livestock disease control
on poverty using the ‘livestock pathways out of
poverty’ framework and discuss its merits and
inherent limitations as a producer-focused frame-
work. Moving from frameworks to metrics, we
review the different attempts to prioritize livestock
diseases from a poverty perspective, illustrating
the difficulties in measuring the impact of livestock
disease, let alone disease control, on poverty. The
importance of a disease to the poor is not sufficient
justification for control and in the next section we
discuss other factors that determine whether
disease control can have impacts on global poverty,
in particular considering feasibility and desirability
of control. The final section reviews some of
the more exciting examples of recent shifts
towards ‘pro-poor’ disease control before leaving
Over the last decade, there has been a progressive and
substantial change in approach to the challenges associ-
ated with development; these can probably be best
summarized by the now obligatory insertion of
‘pro-poor’ and ‘sustainable’ before the long-standing
goal of ‘economic growth’. Whether this change is a
prerequisite to ‘making poverty history’ or an additional
hurdle for equitable global development is probably too
early to evaluate, but nevertheless the change in
approach is both engaging and persuasive. Instead of a
focus on agricultural commodities (such as crops,
livestock, trees) and on improving their productivity,
the focus has now swung to the people. Poverty reduction
is the name of the game. But what does it mean?
Driven by the United Nations Millennium
Declaration of September 2000 and the set of goals
and quantitative indicators that emerged from it
(United Nations 2000), the poverty-focused approach
has necessitated a better understanding of the
measurement of poverty, with more analytical and
evidence-based approaches being applied to measuring
and addressing poverty. As such, while material depri-
vation, in terms of income and assets, is still
considered central to poverty, other factors such as
health, education, vulnerability, voicelessness and
*Author for correspondence (
One contribution of 12 to a Theme Issue ‘Livestock diseases and
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009) 364, 2643–2655
2643 This journal is #2009 The Royal Society
powerlessness have joined it. But for reasons of conven-
ience, income poverty, using monetary estimates of
income or consumption, still dominates most assess-
ments (World Bank 2001). In terms of measuring
poverty, the standard international unit has been the
number of people earning less than US $1 a day
(Chen & Ravallion 2001). Indeed, this was the measure
used in the target for Millennium Development Goal 1
(eradicate extreme poverty and hunger), which aimed to
halve between 1990 and 2015 the proportion of people
whose income is less than $1 a day (see http://www.un.
org/millenniumgoals/poverty.shtml). Recently, the
choice of US $1 per day has been revisited (Ravallion
et al. 2008) and using a new set of 2005 purchasing
power parity data derived from updated national
poverty lines and price surveys, the international bench-
mark has been adjusted to US $1.25. When used to
assess global poverty figures, it is now estimated that
1.4 billion people, amounting to one-quarter of
the population of the developing world, lived below
the new international line (Chen & Ravallion 2008).
This compares to an estimated 1.9 billion poor (half
the population of the developing world) 25 years ago.
Measuring absolute levels of poverty is not the end of
the story; diversity of poverty in a population, in other
words the gap between the haves and have-nots, is an
important component of well-being. This is usually
expressed as the Gini coefficient (McKay 2005), which
has values between 0 and 1, with 0 corresponding to
the unattainable perfect equality (Denmark has a value
of 0.232) and 1 corresponding to complete inequality,
i.e. one household has all the wealth and all the other
households have none (Namibia is high on the list at
0.707). In contrast to income, Gini coefficients have
been deteriorating in the majority of countries, as the
incomes of rich people grow faster than those of the
poor both within and across countries (ILO 2008).
Measuring poverty is one thing, but doing something
about it is another. There are many organizations and
initiatives currently engaged in promoting policies of
poverty reduction (see, for example, the Shanghai
Agenda for Poverty Reduction, 2004; There is
general consensus that economic growth is critical for
poverty reduction, and this requires a favourable
environment, including a sound climate for investment
and entrepreneurship, redressing corruption and
improving governance in both the public and private
sectors and enhanced transparency and accountability.
But while growth is necessary for poverty reduction, it
is not sufficient to ensure the well-being of poor
people, and similar growth rates across different
countries have had dramatically different impacts on
poverty indices. A fair share in the benefits of growth
requires development and enactment of specific
policies, together with investments in poor people.
Such policies include adequate and effective
delivery of education, health and social infrastructure.
The Asian Development Bank (for example) translates
these principles into their policy (
poverty/pro-poor.asp), which states:
Poverty reduction, whether related to income or social
and living conditions, requires conditions in which the
poor can participate in, contribute to, and benefit from
economic growth. Such pro-poor growth generates
employment and income among the poor; enhances
the productive potential of the poor (by creating econ-
omic and social infrastructure facilities and services);
strengthens the governance and business environment
to encourage strong private sector participation; seeks
opportunities for strengthening regional cooperation
and cross-border development; and promotes a
growth process that is environmentally sustainable.
Poverty is declining (although the ongoing ‘credit
crunch’ and global downturn may reverse this) but
still with us, and we next examine how livestock
enterprises can contribute to pro-poor (now often
termed sustainable and inclusive) growth.
The most obvious way livestock might contribute to
poverty reduction is as assets of the poor that meet
livelihood needs. The last few decades have seen
recognition of the importance of livestock to the
poor, both rural (LID 1999;Thornton et al. 2002;
IFAD 2004) and urban (Smit 1996;Baumgartner &
Belevi 2001). Yet, when public resources are being
allocated, livestock is often the Cinderella sector,
under-appreciated and inappropriately funded. For
example, in their analysis of countries’ Poverty
Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs), Blench et al.
(2003) concluded that livestock was under-
represented even in countries where it underpins the
economy. Similarly, resource allocation by central
governments to livestock bears little relation to its
contribution to African economies (OAU-IBAR
2000) and the lion’s share of central funding is often
taken by activities of dubious relevance to the poorest,
such as export promotion in countries with little
comparative or competitive advantage, or training
more tertiary-level professionals where the majority
of livestock keepers have no access to primary animal
healthcare. The question inevitably arises: is this
discrepancy owing to a lack of understanding of the
contribution of livestock, or is it because poor livestock
keepers are indeed of limited relevance to the
elimination of global poverty?
Livestock have often received a bad press, and
undoubtedly, they have the potential to harm as well
as benefit the poor, by destroying environments,
spreading disease or trapping people in poverty; we
here argue that many of these fears may be unjustified.
Concern about overgrazing and overstocking was a
feature of Africa’s colonial era, and the concept of
‘carrying capacity’ along with the ‘tragedy of the
commons’ stigmatized pastoralism as inherently
inefficient and environmentally destructive (e.g.
Lamprey 1983). The image of desert sands engulfing
African villages, combined with reports of ranching
causing devastation to the rainforest, has led to a
popular belief that livestock are responsible for world-
wide environmental destruction. More recent analyses
see pastoralism as an efficient exploiter of patchy
resources in marginal areas, and a boom and bust
population cycle as the inevitable, and indeed, appro-
priate corollary (Blench 2001). But, as the spectre of
livestock-induced desertification has receded, concern
over the contribution of livestock to global warming
2644 B. Perry & D. Grace Review. Impacts of livestock diseases
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
has emerged. Overall, livestock activities are estimated
to contribute some 18 per cent to total anthropogenic
greenhouse gas emission and nearly 80 per cent of
all emissions from the agricultural sector (Steinfeld
et al. 2006). But just 3 per cent of the world’s total
methane output is caused by all of the livestock in
sub-Saharan Africa, which has some 166 million
poor livestock keepers. It follows that if all the livestock
in sub-Saharan Africa were somehow removed, it
would make little difference to global warming; the
impact on African livelihoods, of course, would be
catastrophic across the continent.
Recent years have also seen growing concern over
animals as sources of disease: around 60 per cent of
all diseases are zoonotic (Taylor et al. 2001), animal-
source foods are the single most common source of
food poisoning, and most of the recent emerging
diseases have jumped species from animal hosts.
However, much of the animal-associated disease
burden is preventable, treatable or controllable and
while concern over zoonotic disease has soared in
recent years, from a long-term perspective the
per capita burden continues to decline. The last half-
century saw an increase of life expectancy of 20 years
in poor countries and middle-income countries and
of 10 years in rich countries.
As with disease, so with nutrition: animal-source
food has been implicated as a driver of epidemiological
transition as infectious diseases are replaced by obesity
and lifestyle diseases. On the other hand, animal-
source food is energy dense and a source of high
biological value protein and micronutrients, making
it a valuable food for the young, pregnant and immu-
nosuppressed (Murphy & Allen 2003). For the poor
and hungry, the health benefits of animal-source
food far outweigh the risks.
Moving from health to social concerns, livestock has
been considered a marker for backwardness; the cattle
raids of the Karimajong cluster, where warriors sing
praise songs to bulls and prefer to buy cows than pay
school fees (and the least loved child gets sent away
to school), livestock as the currency for bride price
and dowry in Africa and Asia, sacred cows wandering
among traffic in Kathmandu and Delhi and pigs
sharing the family home in Papua New Guinea, are
all familiar examples. Again, recent years have a seen
a re-evaluation highlighting the role of livestock as a
safety and cargo net for the especially vulnerable
(e.g. women, the poorest and people with HIV;
IFAD 2004) and a ladder out of poverty (e.g. the
Bangladeshi women who use their micro-credit loans
to invest successively in poultry, goats and dairy;
Zaman 1999).
If the negative impacts of livestock on the poor are
sometimes overestimated, the positive have perhaps
been underestimated. In particular, the contribution
of livestock to the livelihoods of the poor who do not
keep livestock is often ignored. The number of poor
people involved in value addition of livestock products
probably, and the number of poor consumers of
livestock products certainly, exceeds the number of
poor rural livestock producers. Most value addition
by poor people occurs in the informal sector (because
this is where most poor people work) and by definition
is difficult to observe and quantify, but case studies
give striking testimony. For example, animal-source
foods are among the most commonly sold street
foods in most countries and often are derived from
animals kept in cities (FAO/WHO 2005). The street-
food sector is considered the single largest informal
sector employer in South Africa (von Holy &
Makhoane 2006) and an employer of 60 000 people
in Ghana (Tomlins et al. 2001). In Bangladesh,
Omore et al. (2001) found that for 100 l of milk
traded per day, 1.5 direct and 2.9 indirect jobs are
generated through hawking, while, for the same
amount of milk, a small-scale processor generates 5.6
direct and 4.4 indirect jobs.
The animal-source food value chain ends with
ingestion, and consumers in developing countries
drive the so-called livestock revolution, predicted to
double global consumption of livestock products
between the years 1990 and 2020 (Delgado et al.
1999). For the poor, food purchase is usually the
largest expenditure, and livestock products make up
around 10 per cent of this (Maltsoglou 2007).
However, the current global depression may slow or
reverse trends—poor people who typically spend
more than half the household budget on food
react to rising prices by switching to cheaper
foods, which often entails switching from animal- to
plant-source foods.
More indirect, but potentially important, is the
impact on global poverty of livestock kept, processed
and sold in developing countries by the not so poor.
Economic growth is fundamental to poverty reduction
and livestock is a sunrise industry that can make a
substantial input to national economies. However,
only a small number of developing countries have
highly developed commercial livestock sectors—and
debate continues on how much of these benefits
‘trickle down’ to the poorest either through
employment, multiplier effects or cheap food
(see LID (1999) and Upton & Otte (2004) for
opposing views).
Commercial enterprises may contribute directly to
poverty reduction when they build a partnership with
smallholder producers, providing financial backing
and access to innovation with the involvement of
‘outgrowers’ or ‘contract farmers’. This model,
exemplified in the livestock sector by Farmers
Choice in Kenya (
and Kalahari Kid in South Africa (http://www.kalahar-, improves the production efficiency of
small-scale producers, provides a model for the new
enterprising small-scale farmers, creates substantial
employment opportunities at various stages along the
value chains and provides safe products to poor
consumers. While such a vertically integrated system
sounds like the ideal solution to livestock’s
contribution to pro-poor growth, there are sadly
only a handful of examples in existence so far where
this has proved feasible, economically viable and
Figure 1 starts to capture some of the themes we
have been discussing: the diversity of livestock’s
impacts, both positive and negative, on the livelihoods
of the poor and the relevance of livestock not only to
Review. Impacts of livestock diseases B. Perry & D. Grace 2645
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
producers but also to intermediaries in livestock value
chains and, increasingly, consumers of livestock
Given the multiple and complex interactions between
livestock and poverty, how can livestock contribute to
processes of pro-poor development? Returning to the
frameworks for poverty reduction discussed earlier,
we cite the approach to accelerating pro-poor growth
proposed by the DFID (2004) and based on four
pillars: creating strong incentives for investment;
fostering international economic links; providing
broad access to assets and markets; and reducing risk
and vulnerability.
These pillars emphasize that poverty reduction is a
process that involves action by many players and at
many levels, not just at the level of the very poor,
although clearly that is critical. As far as livestock
disease is concerned, this framework has been used
recently to evaluate whether foot-and-mouth disease
(FMD) is a priority constraint to poverty and to
assess the impacts of FMD control on poverty
reduction (Perry & Rich 2007). FMD was chosen
because while it undeniably constrains international
market access (DFID’s pillar 3), some argue that
fostering external trade as a poverty-reduction tool
carries with it too many complexities to make it
viable (e.g. Scoones & Woolmer 2006). And Perry
and Rich concluded that it depended on the strength
of the role played by livestock in a given production
system and the relative importance of FMD vis-a
other disease constraints. A series of conditions need
to be met if FMD is to contribute to pro-poor
growth (Perry & Rich 2007), but where these are
met FMD control can indeed contribute to processes
of poverty reduction.
In moving back from general frameworks for
understanding policy and poverty to those specific
to livestock, a landmark conceptualization is the
three livestock-mediated ‘poverty-reduction pathways’
proposed by Perry et al. (2002), namely of reducing
vulnerability, improving productivity performance
and improving market access. This troika, while
adopted by some as a broad framework for livestock’s
contribution to processes of poverty reduction,
was originally developed to illustrate how animal
diseases and their control affect the poor producer.
The first pathway is ‘reducing vulnerability’, here
defined as securing the household’s asset base by
providing access to more reliable flows of benefits.
Social surveys often report that farmers’ greatest fear
is diseases that shock systems, either by suddenly
and rapidly killing large numbers of animals (e.g.
Newcastle disease, rinderpest) or by causing
large-scale drops in demand through fear of zoonotic
disease (e.g. Rift Valley fever, avian influenza); the
first removes livestock assets and the second catastro-
phically devalues them. While the last century has
seen increased capacity to contain epidemics, it has
also seen greater consumer reaction (often over-
reaction) to food scares. Health concerns are no
longer confined to the over-nourished and ‘worried
well’ in rich countries. For example, widespread
media coverage resulted in a 70 per cent drop in poultry
consumption before a single human or avian case was
reported there, and in Viet Nam, financial losses ran-
ging from $70 to 108 per farm were attributed mainly
global warming
biodiversity loss
income, liquidity
guarantee, savings
psycho-social benefits
animals kept
animals used
animals eaten
vulnerability resilience
zoonotic disease
food-borne disease
chronic disease
high biological value protein
energy and fat
nutrient cycling
poverty trap
fuel, clothing,
raw materials,
Figure 1. Impacts of livestock on livelihoods: positive and negative, direct and indirect. Black arrows, direct link; red arrows,
indirect link.
2646 B. Perry & D. Grace Review. Impacts of livestock diseases
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
to the drop in consumer demand (Rushton et al. 2005).
The evidence for impacts of pandemics is strong:
animal plagues have wiped out livestock populations
and caused the collapse of communities depending on
them (Maddox 2006) and numerous economic studies
have estimated the costs of epidemics (e.g. African
swine fever in Cote d’Ivoire, $9.2 million; Nipah
virus in Malaysia $114 million; contagious bovine
pleuropneumonia in Botswana $300 million).
The role of livestock in reducing vulnerability
should not be seen as restricted to securing the
livestock kept by the poor, but rather encompass
securing the health of the poor themselves by reducing
the threat of livestock-related diseases that make poor
people sick. These diseases include not only zoonoses
but also diseases and suboptimal health associated
with lack of animal protein and animal-source
micronutrients. The evidence for the impact of zoono-
tic disease on human health is very strong, partly as a
result of the aforementioned Global Disease Burden
studies: of the 35 leading communicable causes of
death, 15 are either zoonoses or have a zoonotic
component. There have also been a number of
systematic studies showing the high burden of food-
borne diseases, the majority of which are zoonoses
(Adak et al. 2005;CDC 2005;Hall et al. 2005).
Unfortunately, none of the most important diseases
have been thoroughly investigated in the context of
developing countries.
The second pathway is specialization and intensifi-
cation to increase the productivity of livestock,
increasing household incomes and promoting accumu-
lation of other assets. Diseases affecting production
and productivity are primarily endemic diseases;
typically these are common and kill few but sicken
many animals: vector-borne disease, parasitism,
bacterial and viral diseases of high morbidity and
sporadic mortality are examples. To these can be
added the diseases of intensification, that is diseases
associated with high-input, high-output market-
orientated production: mastitis, lameness, dystocia
and metabolic diseases.
Evidence for the importance of endemic diseases to
the poor is mixed. It is often suggested that diseases of
production are important, but there is little evidence
that they are a bottleneck in intensification. Indeed,
animal health often makes up a surprisingly small
share of total costs (Matthews 2001). In a rare example
of a systematic investigation of 34 endemic diseases in
Great Britain, Bennett & IJpelaar (2005) estimated
the costs of disease and disease control at nearly 600
million GB pounds. Four diseases (mastitis, lameness,
bovine viral diarrhoea and enzootic abortion) were
responsible for two-thirds of this. This is considerably
less than the 1.1 billion costs of food-borne disease
(most of which is related to animal source of food)
and a fraction of the total multi-billion value of the
livestock sector in Great Britain.
The third pathway is improving access to market
opportunities (opening new markets, reducing
transaction costs) to increase the profitability of
livestock activities and create incentives to increase
production and sales. This has been considered a
model for the livestock industry and the road blocks
on this pathway are principally the ‘transboundary’
diseases, but also those diseases that present a
human health risk in marketed commodities, such as
cysticercosis in pig meat. The transboundary diseases,
which include FMD, contagious bovine pleuropneu-
monia and African swine fever, are for the most part
highly contagious, capable of rapid spread and have
been controlled or eliminated from most rich
countries, and so effectively block participation in
the lucrative markets for livestock products in Europe
and the Americas.
Evidence for the importance of transboundary
diseases to the poor is conflicting and mainly theoreti-
cal. The Rift Valley fever ban is estimated to have cost
Kenya US $32 million in lost exports to the Gulf and
other negative domestic impacts on agriculture and
other sectors such as transport and services (Rich &
Wanyioke in press). However, most developing
countries are net importers of livestock products, con-
tributing as a whole less than 2 per cent of world
export trade (Upton 2005), and with the exception
of a small number of countries, livestock exports
have been on a downwards trajectory. While some
believe that control of livestock diseases would result
in substantial opportunities through export, others
argue that many developing countries have little
chance at present in the highly competitive world of
export trade, dominated by a small number of
countries (Perry et al. 2006).
Another disease-related constraint on the market
opportunities pathway is increasing concerns over the
safety and quality of livestock products, particularly
with regard to food-borne infections such as salmonel-
losis and brucellosis, and a belief that such concerns
will lead to an acceleration in the growth of private
standards that will force poor smallholder producers
out of markets (World Bank 2005).
Once again, concrete evidence for high relevance to
the poor is scanty. In many Latin American countries,
the main market for milk, yoghurt and desserts shifted
from small shops to the supermarkets in the 1990s.
This has been directly linked to the exit of small
dairy farmers (a decline of 60 000 in 10 years from
production in Brazil accompanied by an average farm
size increase of 55 per cent, with similar patterns in
Argentina and Chile; Reardon et al. 2002). However,
it has also been argued that ‘supermarketization’ is of
little relevance to the poorest; supermarkets account
for less than 4 per cent of urban food expenditures
in almost all African countries, and even with major
growth in supermarket volume, investments in
traditional marketing channels will probably remain
much more important for small farmers and consumer
welfare for at least the next few decades ( Jayne 2007).
Taking into account both the potential importance
to poor people and the strength of the evidence relat-
ing livestock diseases to poverty, the ‘pathways out of
poverty’ perspective suggests that zoonoses and
epidemic diseases are certainly a high priority for
most poor people, endemic disease is probably
important though evidence is lacking, transboundary
diseases are likely to be important only to subsets
of the poor and there is little evidence for the
importance of diseases of intensification. However,
Review. Impacts of livestock diseases B. Perry & D. Grace 2647
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
this prioritization reflects the dearth of comprehensive,
multi-disease, multi-country, meta-evaluation of how
diseases impact the poor both in the short term and
long term, and both directly and through economy-
wide effects. It may also over-represent diseases that
are well researched, for example zoonoses. And finally,
it reflects a focus on the impacts on poor people them-
selves, not on processes of poverty reduction, in which,
if adopting the four pillars of pro-poor growth
proposed by DFID, there might be a different weight
attached to the transboundary diseases; in other
words, while the direct impact of transboundary
diseases on the poor is not always evident, the indirect,
and effects on depressing pro-poor economic growth,
although more uncertain, may be more important.
The three pathways out of poverty start in the
farmyard. To use our previous terminology, they are
organized around the poor as livestock keepers rather
than livestock eaters or livestock users. More recent
conceptualizations of livestock and poverty use broader
frameworks. For example, a recent study of how animal
health services could be better targeted at demand in
the pastoralist areas of the Greater Horn of Africa
identified two major and contrasting needs: services
that protect the vulnerability of communities in the
harsh region prone to extremes of floods and droughts,
and services that promote better market access (Perry &
Sones 2008). Both of these have specific disease com-
ponents relating to priorities in this region, but they
also have broader livestock enterprise support require-
ments that extend to infrastructural, animal feed,
human well-being and other related services that need
to be carefully integrated in such specific environments.
Another framework (‘The livestock revolution
revisited’; K. Sones & J. Dijkman 2009, unpublished
work) takes a more encompassing, and less pro-
duction-focused, perspective, seeing the contribution
of livestock as providing:
(i) market opportunities for competitive small,
medium and larger scale livestock businesses
to produce, sell and trade in livestock and
commodities derived from livestock;
(ii) employment opportunities at all three scales of
livestock enterprises;
(iii) safe and affordable animal protein products to
all categories of consumers;
(iv) a safety-net resource that can be drawn on by
poorer sectors of society to reduce their
Having discussed frameworks for understanding of
impacts of livestock disease on poverty, we move to
metrics. Assessing the poverty-reducing impacts of
controlling livestock diseases in developing countries
is constrained by our limited ability to assess the
poverty impacts of livestock disease itself. With no
consensus metric for animal disease and with little
information on prevalence and incidence, it is imposs-
ible to systematically evaluate and prioritize disease,
let alone assess differential impacts. Development
experience shows this is a dangerous place to be;
allocating resources on the basis of tradition, anecdote
and advocacy inevitably leads to an inequitable and
anti-poor system. Disproportionate spending on
tertiary and professional education at the expense of
primary and vocational education has been shown to
have adverse impacts on health, wealth and education
(Gradstein 2003). On the other hand, where allocation
is informed by evidence and guided by pro-poor
policies, the benefits can be dramatic. The Pareto
principle or Law of the Vital Few, which states that,
for many events, the greater part of the effects comes
from the smaller part of the causes, applies to many
health situations. For example, the Global Burden of
Disease (GBD) study shows that six infectious diseases
(20% of the total classified) are responsible for 75 per
cent of the total disability-adjusted life years (DALYs)
lost. Recent years have seen an increasing interest by
poor countries in allocating medical expenditure to
where it will have the most impact with some encoura-
ging results. For example, by allocating medical
supplies to hospitals on the basis of locally prevalent
diseases, Tanzania was able to reduce infant mortality
by over 40 per cent between 2000 and 2003 in two
pilot districts (Neilson & Smutylo 2004).
In the absence of our ideal metric, and given the
challenges of untangling the linkages between diseases
and poverty-reduction processes discussed previously,
estimating the importance of animal disease impacts
on the poor has mainly relied on qualitative measures:
asking experts and asking farmers.
In table 1, we compare assessments of the impact of
cattle diseases from four different studies. The study of
Perry et al. (2002) used a systematic approach in which
criteria for importance to the poor were developed
and weightings assigned. Around 60 in-country
professionals were interviewed in four geographical
areas (East and West Africa, southeast Asia and the
Indian subcontinent). A group of international experts
also took part in the study (Perry et al. 2002). The
second expert-based study was an ad hoc survey of
190 animal health researchers, practitioners and
policy makers, contacted during an epidemiology
conference and by email concerning the major
animal health constraints in southern countries
(LDG 2004). The third stakeholder-based listing was
developed by the Global Alliance for Livestock
Veterinary Medicine (GALVmed), a not-for-profit
global alliance with the goal of developing and
ensuring access to vaccines and other animal health
products to help poor farmers in the developing
world ( A fourth farmer opinion
survey was based on interviews with 1314 farmers
in India (Pilling 2004). For comparison, we add
an expert-opinion-derived list of priorities from a
global perspective, the OIE list of priority diseases
(OIE 2008).
Although the criteria for developing the list were
different between studies, the lack of consensus
between the lists is striking. Only FMD appears in
all of the five rankings, and in those lists that are
ranked, there is little agreement as to relative
importance of diseases. The four studies focusing on
diseases of importance to poverty identified a total of
2648 B. Perry & D. Grace Review. Impacts of livestock diseases
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
Table 1. Comparing studies to identify and in some cases rank diseases of cattle that are most important to poverty reduction or to global trade.
expert opinion—livestock
development expert opinion—researchers
expert opinion—
stakeholders farmer opinion expert opinion—disease experts expert opinion—disease experts
global: livestock diseases
important to the poor
global: livestock diseases
important to the poor
global: livestock
diseases important
to the poor
India: livestock
diseases important
to the poor
global: notifiable
livestock diseases global: notifiable livestock diseases
Per ry et al. (importance ranked) LDG (importance ranked) GALV med ranked
by species
Pilling (importance
OIE new disease lists
(alphabetically ranked
OIE list A (alphabetically ranked
gastro-intestinal helminths
neonatal mortality
bovine anaplasmosis
bovine babesiosis
bovine anaplasmosis
bovine babesiosis
contagious bovine
bovine genital campylobacteriosis
bovine spongiform encephalopathy
bovine brucellosis
bovine cysticercosis
liver fluke (fascioliasis) contagious bovine Rift Valley fever septicaemia bovine tuberculosis bovine genital campylobacteriosis
reproductive disorders
nutrition/ micronutrients
tick-borne diseases
liver fluke
bovine viral diarrhoea
contagious bovine
bovine spongiform encephalopathy
bovine tuberculosis
Toxocara vitulorum rinderpest respiratory disease pleuropneumonia dermatophilosis
haemorrhagic septicaemia Johnes anorexia enzootic bovine leukosis enzootic bovine leukosis
Brucella abortus
trypanosomosis (tsetse)
haemorrhagic septicaemia
infectious bovine rhinotracheitis/
haemorrhagic septicaemia
infectious bovine rhinotracheitis/
mastitis infectious pustular vulvovaginitis infectious pustular vulvovaginitis
rinderpest lumpy skin disease malignant catarrhal fever
Trypanosoma evansi
contagious bovine
malignant catarrhal fever
diarrhoeal diseases
trypanosomosis (tsetse transmitted)
trypanosomosis (tsetse transmitted)
Rift Valley fever
Theileria annulata
infectious bovine rhinotracheitis
East Coast fever
tick infestation
Criteria for notifiability are: potential for international spread; capacity for significant spread within naive populations and zoonotic potential.
Diseases affecting multiple species are excluded.
Review. Impacts of livestock diseases B. Perry & D. Grace 2649
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
33 diseases. Of these, 21 were only mentioned in a
single study, only six appeared in two studies, again
only six in three studies and none in all four studies.
The six diseases for which there was most agreement
on importance were: contagious bovine pleuropneu-
monia, East Coast fever, FMD, haemorrhagic
septicaemia, helminthiasis and trypanosomosis
(tsetse transmitted). All five are present in Africa and
two are present only in Africa.
The greatest divergence was between experts and
farmers. Half of the problems cited by farmers are
clinical signs rather than diseases, resulting in an
unknown overlap between categories and suggesting
that farmer consultations may be a preliminary rather
than definitive step in disease prioritization. Farmer
disease knowledge is extremely context specific and
often overestimates diseases that have visible signs
(e.g. tapeworms) or that are highly publicized (e.g.
FMD in South America; LDG 2004). On the other
hand, farmers often underestimate diseases that have
protean symptoms (e.g. tuberculosis), produce few
dramatic signs (e.g. Q fever), are caused by non-visible
pathogens or occur in less-valued animals. And while
participatory methods are good at eliciting what
concerns people, the extensive literature on the
psychology of risk shows a large disconnect between
what we worry about and what actually threatens us.
However, expert opinion is also problematic. The
fundamental lack of knowledge on disease presence,
prevalence, incidence and impacts in developing
countries can hardly be overstated. Without basic infor-
mation experts’ opinions are likely to be little more than
guesses, based on accepted (but potentially wrong)
wisdom and anecdotes and reinforced by group think.
Much progress has been made in recent decades in
assessing human disease burden and perhaps lessons
learned here can be applied to measuring the impact
of livestock disease, allowing us to arrive at a transpar-
ent, evidence-based, consensus prioritization. In
recent years, the DALY, a type of health-adjusted life
year (HALY), has emerged as a popular and con-
venient measure. This summary measure combines
the impact of illness, disability and mortality on
population health, including a discount factor to
reflect the lower societal value on the life of the very
young and old. DALYs were used in the GBD 1990
study commissioned by the World Bank in 1991
(and in the process of being updated) and are of
obvious importance in measuring the impact of zoono-
tic livestock disease. However, they capture only a
small subset of the costs associated with human
disease. They consider disutility to individuals but
not medical or production costs, while costs of avert-
ing behaviour and collective disutility are not usually
considered in any method (table 2).
The relatively new concept of dual-burden disease
is a step towards the comprehensive assessment of
animal disease. Many animal diseases cause illness
and death in people as well as animals (table 3), and
the failure to integrate veterinary and public health
economic assessments means the true impacts of
zoonotic disease are systematically underevaluated.
In Mongolia, an economic analysis of brucellosis
included both medical and veterinary costs and
benefits (Roth et al. 2003). This found that the
public health sector reaps only approximately 10 per
cent of the benefits, and regarded solely from a cost
per DALY-averted perspective, brucellosis control
was less attractive than other disease control expendi-
ture options. But when the benefits for the livestock
sector were added and the costs of the intervention
are shared between the public health and the agricul-
tural sector proportionally to their benefits, the control
of brucellosis actually had a net gain for both sectors.
This opens new approaches for the control of zoonoses
in developing countries through cost contributions
from multiple sectors.
Ecohealth offers another framework for broadening
our understanding of disease impact. This takes a
transdisciplinary systems approach that aims to
integrate human, livestock, wildlife and ecosystem
health, exploring their interdependence. An ecohealth
perspective can help reveal otherwise hidden impacts
both positive and negative. For example, animals can
be sentinels of human disease (www.canarydatabase.
org). Negative impacts often missed in conventional
analysis include spillovers of livestock diseases into
wildlife, for example, canine distemper and rabies in
wild dogs in Kenya and Ethiopia, tuberculosis in
badgers in the UK and opossums in New Zealand
and FMD in buffaloes.
The concept of dual burden and ecohealth takes us
towards a consensus and comprehensive metric that
would capture the true impact of animal disease,
going beyond the direct costs of livestock disease, to
consider impacts on human health, wildlife and the
environment and even altruistic costs (e.g. willingness
to pay for other humans and non-humans to avoid
illness) and existence costs (e.g. willingness to pay to
preserve wildlife in existence independent of their
role in providing ecosystem services).
Assessing disease impact is necessary but not sufficient
for assessing the impact of disease control. It is not
automatic that because a disease has a high impact
on poor people’s livestock and lives, controlling the
disease will have an equivalently high benefit to
them. Assuming that we can assess disease impacts
either using objective (the ideal impact metric) or
subjective (opinion-based) methods, we next need to
factor in the technical feasibility and costs of control.
Important factors influencing the feasibility of
controlling disease (at least within country borders)
have been identified in previous reviews (Nelson
1999;Miller et al. 2006;ITFDR 2008). Control is
more difficult where the organism is present in numer-
ous hosts and almost impossible when the organism is
widespread in wild animal populations (as is the case
for tuberculosis) or is able to survive outside the
host for long periods. Control is only possible
where infected animals can be distinguished from
non-infected and the existence of carrier states and
chronic or inapparent infection militate against
control. Control requires the availability of effective
2650 B. Perry & D. Grace Review. Impacts of livestock diseases
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
and practical interventions. Such interventions could
include a vaccine or other primary preventive, a
curative treatment, or a means of eliminating vectors.
Ideally, intervention should be effective, safe, inexpen-
sive, long lasting and easily deployed. Alongside these
factors related to technical feasibility, control must
also be economically advantageous and politically
Obviously, feasibility and cost of control are inver-
sely correlated, and attributing a monetary value to
the costs and benefits of control helps in setting priori-
ties. For zoonotic and food-borne animal diseases, a
cost-effectiveness literature is emerging; this typically
estimates the cost per DALY averted (Budke et al.
2006). As a rule of thumb, interventions that cost
less than US $150 per DALY averted are ‘attractive’
from a public health perspective, while those that
cost US $25 per DALY averted are ‘highly attractive’
(WHO 1996, unpublished data). Of course, as dis-
cussed earlier, DALYs averted represent only a
subset of the benefits of disease control.
Non-zoonotic animal disease control programmes
have been evaluated on an ad hoc basis, varying
in the costs and benefits they consider and the
methodologies used (e.g. Perry & Randolph 1999).
This makes it difficult to draw general conclusions or
compare diseases. Moreover, most studies have been
performed in developed countries, and those in devel-
oping countries rarely look at differential impact on the
poor. A notable exception was the assessment of FMD
control in Zimbabwe (Perr y et al. 2003). This found
that although most direct benefits accrued to large-
scale, richer farmers, there were significant multiplier
effects caused by disruption of export market access,
affecting employment and associated industries,
which amounted to three-quarters of the direct losses
from an FMD-induced export ban. If we are to under-
stand the impacts of livestock disease on global
poverty, we urgently need more studies of this type.
(a)Impact of disease control: desirability
In poor countries, even cheap, highly cost-effective
and technically feasible disease control programmes
may not be supported because stakeholders are not
willing to devote resources to control. For livestock
disease control to impact on global poverty, it must
also be socially feasible.
In a democracy, keeping voters happy is not only
desirable but necessary, and public concern over dis-
eases will have a large influence on the priority
assigned by political decision makers who control
public funding. Unfortunately, people are very poor
judges of the true impact of disease, and their level
of concern is typically unrelated to the actual impact.
Diseases that are perceived as novel, unnatural,
imposed by others, outside our personal control,
highly publicized, mismanaged by authorities, benefit-
ing someone else or occurring to famous people are
considered of greater importance and hence priority,
while those perceived as familiar, voluntary or
non-fatal are generally underestimated (Covello &
Merkhofer 1994). The enormous expense of control-
ling bovine spongiform encephalopathy in the UK
(GBP 5 billion) is difficult to justify in terms of
human deaths averted (around 25 a year); it seems
Table 2. Different costs associated with illness in humans and tools available to estimate them. (Italics, market prices
available; bold, included in health metrics; bold italic, commonly ignored.)
cost of illness (medical)
cost of illness
(production) cost of averting behaviour intangible costs
treatment costs,
(infrastructure etc.)
loss of production
risk mitigations such as
city water treatment
disutility of ill health for
friends, family etc.
treatment costs
loss of production
risk mitigation such as
boiling water, filters
disutility of ill health for
individual (HALY)
Table 3. Double-burden diseases, whose control will benefit both human health and contribution of livestock to livelihoods.
(Italics, double-burden disease.)
no or negligible diseases in
minor disease in
animals major disease in animals
no or negligible disease burden
for people
pink eye
Newcastle disease
contagious bovine
minor disease burden to people Norwalk virus infection orf avian influenza H5 current strain
major disease burden for people hepatitis toxigenic Escherichia
Review. Impacts of livestock diseases B. Perry & D. Grace 2651
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
unlikely that this number would have dramatically
increased in the absence of intervention (DEFRA
2004), but there is little doubt that a more measured
and economically rational approach would have been
unacceptable. Sandman’s much-quoted formula
states: risk ¼hazard þoutrage, and while the public
pays too little attention to risk, experts often ignore
‘outrage’ (Sandman 1987). As poor countries
become more mediatized, this phenomenon is becom-
ing increasingly important; indeed, it may be argued
that recent developing country national initiatives on
Rift Valley fever and avian influenza have been largely
driven by a desire to be ‘seen to be doing something’,
raising the concern that resources may be diverted
from more important but less newsworthy diseases
(Breiman et al. 2007).
As well as being desirable to the community at
large, control and the behavioural changes associated
with disease control must be acceptable to those
directly involved. This is a particular challenge in
disease control targeting or involving livestock kept
by poor people, as the presence of animal disease is
often an indicator of a system that is affordable or
otherwise attractive to poor people. Getting rid of
disease involves other changes that may also make
the system unattractive to poor people. Most disease
control requires changes in practice and these, no
matter how minor or inexpensive they appear to
outsiders, often risk undermining the aspects of the
farming system that makes it attractive to poor
people. In East Africa, for example, people keep pigs
which roam freely; this system requires minimal exter-
nal inputs and generates low and unpredictable profits.
Because sanitation is poor, cysticercosis is a problem.
Cheap appropriate technologies exist for cysticercosis
control (e.g. tethering pigs, exclusive use of latrines
by people). However, these changes, although small
in themselves, fundamentally change the system from
‘no care’ to ‘care’. Poor farmers are rarely willing to
make this switch unless they get external help and
better-off farmers will change even without external
support, calling into question the argument for
investing development resources in changing disease
management behaviour.
A major constraint to further understanding of the role
of livestock in the poverty-reduction process has been
the lack of investment by developing countries in
agriculture, and as previously mentioned, specifically
in livestock. But investment in research has been
even less. It is perhaps understandable that research
comes low on the priority list in many developing
countries, but there is really no excuse in a global
research for the development community that
acknowledges poverty reduction as an over-riding
aim. While there are a variety of research initiatives
underway in the north, and such initiatives will
undoubtedly bring some benefits to developing
countries, many of the benefits will be the result of
‘spillover’ effects. It is likely that many animal diseases
of high significance to protecting and enhancing the
assets and vulnerability of poor rural communities, to
improving market access or to the aspirations for
improved productivity will not qualify for such global
attention, given the low direct risk they pose to the
developed world. In a recent review of animal health
constraints to development, Perry & Sones (2007)
considered that sectors of the affluent world are still
basing their science contributions to poverty reduction
on self-interest, relying on the spillover from invest-
ments designed primarily to protect themselves; they
concluded that at the moment, only the crumbs go
to the poor.
Before leaving the subject, we ask some speculative,
and perhaps provocative, questions. How can under-
standing the links between livestock and poverty help
better target disease control efforts? If global poverty
reduction was the aim of livestock disease control, what
would it look like? How much of the impact of livestock
disease on global poverty is due to disease itself and how
much is due to current policies towards disease control?.
How can understanding the links between livestock
and poverty help better target disease control efforts?
A recurring theme in this review has been the scanty
(but emerging) evidence base on the impact of
livestock disease on global poverty, the complexity
and multiplicity of the interactions (both negative
and positive) between livestock and disease and the
divergence of opinion on what diseases are important
to global poverty. In the absence of agreed and objec-
tive metrics that can assess the impact of livestock
disease, let alone their differential impact on the
poor, it is likely that current resource allocation is
inefficient. Analogies from other sectors suggest that
ignorance of impact and inability to prioritize foster
the direction of resources by articulate interest
groups. Their vested interests in a particular disease
has often little to do with its contribution to poverty-
reduction processes. That poverty is not the first
priority is evidenced by disease control tools that
would be effective in a resource-poor context but are
unused for reasons that have little to do with science;
for example, the lactoperoxidase system of milk preser-
vation, which would dramatically increase the safety
and market penetration of smallholder milk, and
food irradiation, which could allow the export of
livestock commodities with negligible risk to the
consumers in developed countries, are cases in point.
As a thought experiment, we consider how would
livestock disease control in developing countries
differ if its poverty reduction was the over-arching
concern? In a world of scarce resources, the first step
would be targeting. Should efforts be focused on the
poor who consume livestock products and are sickened
and killed by food-borne disease, slipping into
absolute poverty? Or on reducing the price of
animal-source foods in order to increase children’s
IQ and ability to complete education? Or on enhan-
cing value chains so they work better for the poor?
As discussed earlier, we lack the tools, let alone
data, to start answering this fundamental question
of poverty targeting. Moving from targeting to
implementation, recent decades have seen many
2652 B. Perry & D. Grace Review. Impacts of livestock diseases
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
promising innovations, which, though successful in
small studies, have yet to become part of mainstream
veterinary thinking or day-to-day disease control. If
poverty was the focus, we might see these innovations
embedded in livestock value chains. Disease control at
the farm level would involve a higher proportion of
primary animal workers whose services are more
accessible and affordable than that of veterinarians.
Control programmes would emphasize the animals of
the poor (small stock and poultry) and the most
vulnerable (including women). Disease control policy
would put greater weight on the impact of disease
on vulnerability and prioritize diseases that most
constrain pathways of poverty reduction. Control strat-
egies would recognize that most disease control is
carried out by poor people themselves, design control
interventions on this basis and put greater emphasis on
disease control strategies that are acceptable and
appropriate for poor farmers. If poverty was the
focus, disease control at the level of international
trade might be increasingly based on evidence and
not politics and personal relations. The commodity-
based trade approach would be accepted and
supported as more environment and animal-welfare
friendly than trade in live animals. Group certification
for quality standards would be accepted, reducing the
transaction costs for small farmers in meeting require-
ments. Outgrower schemes linking smallholder
farmers would help replicate the success seen in horti-
culture and floriculture. If poverty was the focus for
veterinary public health, we might see dual-burden
assessments regularly carried out to include the effect
of zoonoses on livelihoods as well as health. Most
resources for controlling food-borne disease would
be dedicated to the informal markets where the poor
buy and sell. Decision making on food safety would
take into account the contribution of informally
marketed food to the livelihoods of the poor.
The final and self-avowedly contrarian of our three
questions is the extent to which the impacts of
livestock disease on global poverty are due to control
policy rather than disease itself. The medical mindset
sees disease as the enemy, and sees control as a self-
evident good that needs no elaborate justification,
but a closer examination suggests that many of the
negative impacts of livestock disease can in fact be
attributable to policy rather than pathogenicity. For
example, the presence of endemic FMD in a country
is often considered a self-sufficient reason for prevent-
ing the export of livestock products and for initiating
national or zonal eradication programmes when
eradication is clearly unattainable in the foreseeable
future. Yet, the evidence is indisputable that the risk
of FMD from de-boned meat derived from properly
handled carcases is negligible, and this has stimulated
the interest in commodity-based trade in livestock
products from FMD-endemic countries (Thomson
et al. 2004;Perry et al. 2005). Avian influenza control
in endemic countries is still based on slaughter in a
containment or ‘protection’ zone, despite emerging
evidence that this is not only ineffective but also
unworkable. Rich countries have repeatedly demon-
strated an ability to control animal diseases, but,
with the notable exception of rinderpest, the control
of which was well funded by outside agencies, many
of the poorest countries have consistently demon-
strated an inability to control most animal diseases.
In many African countries, animal disease control is
deteriorating. It is at least arguable that we need to
review not only disease control strategies but the
underlying assumptions that disease is controllable in
the absence of a well-funded and highly performing
veterinary system and that any disease control
(irrespective of cost, likelihood of success and
unwanted side effects) is better than none.
This review has explored the complexity of linkages
between livestock, livestock disease, livestock disease
control and global poverty. The most obvious
conclusion is that livestock probably matter to poverty
reduction, but we are not sure exactly how or how
much. Moreover, we have little understanding of the
‘vital few’ versus the ‘trivial many’ diseases whose
control will matter most to poverty, lacking not only
data but tools to measure it. The result is little consen-
sus on which livestock diseases actually matter to
poverty reduction. However, we set out considerations
which would be taken into account in developing a
conceptual framework that would allow this necessary
identification and prioritization of livestock diseases.
These include: understanding livestock bads as well
as goods; considering how disease control impacts
not only on the poor livestock keeper but also the
more numerous actors in the livestock value chains,
and of course the consumers; getting beyond the
effects of disease on production to consider impacts
on human health, livelihoods and the ecosystem; and
taking into account not only the importance of disease
but the marginal costs and social desirability of control
and the role of livestock all the way along value chains
and beyond. The last decades have seen a dramatic
shift towards pro-poor livestock development and an
exciting array of innovations. The challenge of the
next few decades will be in developing methods, gener-
ating evidence and shifting mindsets so as to maximize
the contribution of livestock to global health, wealth,
equity and sustainability.
We would like to thank Jeroen Dijkman, Thomas Randolph
and Keith Sones for commenting on earlier drafts of the
Adak, G. K., Meakins, S. M., Yip, H., Lopman, B. A. &
O’Brien, S. J. 2005 Disease risks from foods, England
and Wales, 19962000. Emerg. Infect. Dis. 11, 365 372.
Baumgartner, B. & Belevi, H. 2001 A systematic overview
of urban agriculture in developing countries. Zurich,
Switzerland: EWAG.
Bennett, R. M. & IJpelaar, J. 2005 Updated estimates of the
costs associated with 34 endemic livestock diseases in
Great Britain. J. Agric. Econ. 56, 135144. (doi:10.
Blench, R. 2001 ‘You can’t go home again’, pastoralism in the
new millennium. London, UK: ODI.
Review. Impacts of livestock diseases B. Perry & D. Grace 2653
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
Blench, R., Chapman, R. & Slaymaker, T. 2003 A study of the
role of livestock in poverty reduction strategy papers. Rome,
Italy: FAO.
Breiman, R. F., Nasidi, A., Katz, M. A., Njenga, M. K. &
Vertefeuille, J. 2007 Preparedness for highly pathogenic
avian influenza pandemic in Africa. Emerg. Infect. Dis.
13, 14531458.
Budke, C. M., Deplazes, P. & Torgerson, P. R. 2006 Global
socioeconomic impact of cystic echinococcosis. Emerg.
Infect. Dis. 2, 296303.
CDC (Centre for Disease Control and Prevention) 2005
FoodNet, Foodborne Disease Active Surveillance
Network, CDC’s Emerging Infections Program. See http://
Chen, S. & Ravallion, M. 2001 How did the world’s poor
fare in the 1990s? Rev. Inc. Wealth 47, 283 300.
Chen, S. & Ravallion, M. 2008 The developing world is poorer
than we thought, but no less successful in the fight against
poverty. Washington, DC: World Bank.
Covello, V. T. & Merkhofer, M. W. 1994 Risk assessment
methods. New York, NY: Plenum Press.
DEFRA (Department for Environment, Food and Rural
Affairs) 2004 Costs to the UK of BSE measures. See
html (Accessed 14 December 2008).
Delgado, C., Rosegrant, M., Steinfeld, H., Ehui, S. &
Courbois, C. 1999 Livestock to 2020: the next food revolu-
tion. Washington, Rome and Nairobi: IFPRI, FAO and
Department for International Development 2004 How to
accelerate pro-poor growth: a basic framework for policy
analysis. See
briefnote2.pdf (Accessed 14 December 2008).
FAO/WHO (Food and Agriculture Organisation/World
Health Organization) 2005 FAO/WHO Regional Confer-
ence on Food Safety for Africa,3– 6 October 2005,Harare,
Zimbabwe. Rome/Geneva: FAO/WHO.
Gradstein, M. 2003 The political economy of public spending on
education, inequality, and growth. Washington, DC: World
Hall, G. V. et al. 2005 Estimating of foodborne gastro-
enteritis, Australia, allowing for uncertainty. Emerg.
Infect. Dis.11, 1257– 1264.
IFAD (International Fund for Agricultural Development)
2004 Livestock services and the poor: a global initiative col-
lecting, coordinating and sharing experiences. Rome, Italy:
ILO (International Labor Organisation) 2008 World of Work
Report 2008—income inequalities in the age of financial
globalization. Geneva, Switzerland: ILO.
ITFDR (International Task Force for Disease Eradication)
2008 See
Jayne, T. S. 2007 Underappreciated facts about African agricul-
ture: implications for poverty reduction and agricultural
growth strategies. East Lansing, MI: Michigan State
Lamprey, H. 1983 Pastoralism yesterday and today: the
overgrazing problem. In Tropical savannas: ecosystems of
the world, vol. 13 (ed. F. Bourliere), pp. 643– 666.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands: Elsevier.
LDG (Livestock Development Group) 2004 Receptors,
end-users and providers: the deconstruction of demand-led
processes and knowledge transfer in animal health research.
Reading, PA: LDG.
LID (Livestock in Development) 1999 Livestock in poverty-
focused development. Crewkerne, UK: LID.
Maddox, G. 2006 Sub-Saharan Africa: an environmental
history. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-Clio.
Maltsoglou, I. 2007 Household expenditure on food of animal origin:
a comparison of Uganda, Vietnam and Peru. Rome, Italy: FAO.
Matthews, K. H. 2001 Antimicrobial drug use and
veterinary costs in U.S. livestock production. Washington,
McKay, A. 2005 Tools for analysing growth and poverty: an
introduction. See
erty-tools.pdf (Accessed 14 December 2008).
Miller, M., Barrett, S. & Henderson, D. A. 2006 Disease
control priorities in developing countries. In Control and
eradication (eds D. T. Jamison et al.), pp. 1163 1176.
New York, NY: Oxford University Press. (doi:10.1596/
Murphy, S. P. & Allen, L. H. 2003 Nutritional importance of
animal source foods. J. Nutr. 133, 3932S3935S.
Neilson, S. & Smutylo, T. 2004 The TEHIP ‘Spark’: planning
and managing health resources at the district level, Final
Report. Ottawa, ON: IDRC.
Nelson, A. M. 1999 The cost of disease eradication.
Smallpox and bovine tuberculosis. Ann. NY Acad. Sci.
894, 8391. (doi:10.1111/j.1749-6632.1999.tb08048.x)
OAU-IBAR (Organisation of African Unity, Inter-African
Bureau of Animal Resources) 2000 Financing livestock
and animal health services in Sub-Saharan Africa: the case
of Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Tanzania and
Uganda. Nairobi, Kenya: OAU-IBAR.
OIE (World Organisation for Animal Health) 2008 Diseases
notifiable to the OIE (updated 23 January 2006).
Omore, A., Mulindo, J. C., Islam, S. M. F., Nurah, G.,
Khan, M. I., Staal, S. J. & Dugdill, B. T. 2001Employment
generation through small-scale dairy marketing and proces-
sing: experiences from Kenya, Bangladesh and Ghana.
Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI. See
Perry, B. D. & Randolph, T. F. 1999 Improving the assess-
ment of the economic impact of parasitic diseases in
production animals. Vet. Parasitol. 84, 143– 166. (doi:10.
Perry, B. D. & Rich, K. 2007 The poverty impacts of foot
and mouth disease and the poverty reduction implications
of its control. Vet. Rec. 160, 238 241.
Perry, B. D. & Sones, K. R. 2007 Poverty reduction through
animal health. Science 315, 333 334. (doi:10.1126/
Perry, B. D. & Sones, K. R. 2008. Strengthening demand-led
animal health services in pastoral areas of the IGAD region.
Rome, Italy: FAO. See
Perry, B. D., Randolph, T. F., McDermott, J. J., Sones, K. R. &
Thornton, P. K. 2002 Investing in animal health research to
alleviate poverty. Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI.
Perry, B. D. et al. 2003 The impact and poverty reduction
implications of foot and mouth disease control in souther n
Africa, with special reference to Zimbabwe. Nairobi, Kenya:
Perry, B. D., Nin Pratt, A., Sones, K. & Stevens, C. 2005 An
appropriate level of risk: balancing the need for safe livestock
products with fair market access for the poor. Pro-Poor Live-
stock Policy Initiative Working Paper No. 23, Rome, Italy:
Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United
Perry, B. D., Nin Pratt, A. & Stevens, C. 2006 A novel
classification of countries based on the importance of
SPS issues to trading enterprises. In Proc. 11th Int.
Symp. Vet. Epidemiol. Econom. (ISVEE), 7 11 August
2006,Cairns, Australia. See
Pilling, D. 2004 Livestock disease prioritisation and the
poor: findings from India. M. Phil. thesis, University of
2654 B. Perry & D. Grace Review. Impacts of livestock diseases
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
Ravallion, M., Chen, S. & Sangraula, P. 2008 Dollar a day
revisited. Washington, DC: World Bank.
Reardon, T., Berdegue
´, J. A. & Farrington, J. 2002
Supermarkets and farming in Latin America: pointing
directions for elsewhere? London, UK: ODI.
Rich, K. M. & Wanyioke, F. In press. An assessment of the
regional and national socio-economic impacts of the 2007
Rift Valley Fever outbreak in Kenya. Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg.
Roth, F., Zinsstag, J., Orkhon, D., Chimed-Ochir, G., Hutton,
G., Cosivi, O., Carrin, G. & Otte, J. 2003 Human health
benefits from livestock vaccination for brucellosis: case
study. Bull. World Health Org. 81, 867 876.
Rushton, J., Viscarra, R., Guerne Bleich, E. & McLeod, A.
2005 Impact of avian influenza outbreaks in the poultry
sectors of five South East Asian outbreak costs, response
and potential long term control. Worlds Poult. Sci. J. 61,
491514. (doi:10.1079/WPS200570)
Sandman, P. M. 1987 Risk communication: facing public
outrage. EPA J. 13, 21.
Scoones, I. & Woolmer, I. 2006 Livestock, disease, trade and
markets: policy choices for the livestock sector in Africa.
Brighton, UK: IDS.
Smit, J. 1996 Urban agriculture—food, jobs and sustainable
cities. New York, NY: UNDP.
Rosales, M. & de Hann, C. 2006 Livestock’s long
shadow, environmental issues and options. Rome, Italy: FAO.
Taylor, L. H., Latham, S. M. & Woolhouse, M. E. 2001 Risk
factors for human disease emergence. Phil. Trans. R. Soc.
Lond. B 356, 983989. (doi:10.1098/rstb.2001.0888)
Thomson, G. R., Tambi, E. N., Hargreaves, S. K., Leyland,
T. J., Catley, A. P., van Klooster, G. G. M. & Penrith, L.
2004 International trade in livestock and livestock
products: the need for a commodity-based approach.
Vet. Rec. 155, 429 433.
Thornton, P. K., Kruska, R. L., Henninger, N., Kristjanson,
P. M., Reid, R. S., Atieno, F., Odero, A. & Ndegwa, T.
2002 Mapping poverty and livestock. Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI.
Tomlins, K., Johnson, P. N. T. & Mahara, B. 2001 Improv-
ing street food vending in Accra: problems and prospects.
In Food safety in crop post harvest systems. Proc. Int.
Workshop sponsored by the Crop Post Harvest Programme of
the United Kingdom Department for International Develop-
ment Harare,20– 21 September 2001,Zimbabwe.
United Nations 2000 Millennium declaration. See http://
Upton, U. 2005 Trade in livestock and livestock products:
international regulation and role for economic development.
Rome, Italy: FAO.
Upton, M. & Otte, J. 2004 Pro-poor livestock policies: which
poor to target? Rome, Italy: FAO.
von Holy, A. & Makhoane, F. M. 2006 Improving street food
vending in South Africa: achievements and lessons
learned. Int. J. Food. Microbiol. 111, 8992. (doi:10.
World Bank 2001 World development report 2000/2001:
attacking poverty. New York, NY: Oxford University
World Bank 2005 The impact of food safety and agricultural
health standards on developing country exports. Washington,
DC: World Bank.
Zaman, H. 1999 Assessing the poverty and vulnerability
impact of micro-credit in Bangladesh: a case study
of BRAC. Washington, DC: World Bank. See http://
Review. Impacts of livestock diseases B. Perry & D. Grace 2655
Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2009)
... However, the list is much longer, including other relevant shared infections such as foot-and-mouth disease (FMD), Rift Valley fever (RVF), brucellosis, and tuberculosis (TB). Often, these shared infections are regarded as "double-burden diseases", the control of which would benefit both human and animal health and livestock production and trade [19]. ...
... Given the key role of cattle in Africa as a safety net and a ladder out of poverty, it is important to maximize the contribution of research activities on livestock disease control to global health, wealth, equity, and sustainability [19]. ...
... Livestock ownership supports and sustains the livelihoods of an estimated 70% of the rural poor (LID, 1999;World Bank 2019). These livestock producers are mainly women, for whom livestock plays an important role in the improvement of status and represents one of the most vital sources of income (DFID, 2000;Perry and Grace 2009;Thornton, 2010). Livestock ownership also tends to increase the consumption of animal protein and micronutrients and creates employment opportunities beyond the immediate household. ...
Corona virus disease 2019 (Covid-19) has been major threat for the sustainability of human existence. In understanding the gravity of the situation, every state has undertaken special steps to fight against the pandemic mostly with measures involving social distancing and self-isolation, restriction in travel and trade. This is done in all the states to avoid the spread of the virus. All these strategies to combat against the pandemic have greatly affected an important economic sector such as livestock production. Livestock production is one of the main agricultural sector in endorsing availability and accessibility of food and human development. Livestock plays an important role in the economic system, provides food and feed material, creates employment opportunities to a very large population; meet the animal protein demands of the economy. At present, livestock industry has included game reserves, recreational centers, marketing of livestock, processing of livestock, distribution of animal products, research institutes etc. are all accepted as component of modern animal production. This review intends to document the impact of Covid-19 pandemic on livestock production and food security as it primarily involves the sustainability of human life and the economy. It was observed that the Covid-19 pandemic protocols and provisions interferes with the supply chain of the market with impaired production and distribution. La maladie à virus Corona 2019 (Covid-19) a été une menace majeure pour la durabilité de l'existence humaine. Comprenant la gravité de la situation, chaque État a pris des mesures spéciales pour lutter contre la pandémie, principalement avec des mesures impliquant la distanciation sociale et l'auto-isolement, la restriction des voyages et du commerce. Cela se fait dans tous les états pour éviter la propagation du virus. Toutes ces stratégies de lutte contre la pandémie ont fortement affecté un secteur économique important comme l'élevage. La production animale est l'un des principaux secteurs agricoles en faveur de la disponibilitéet de l'accessibilité de la nourriture et du développement humain. L'élevage joue un rôle important dans le système économique, fournit des denrées alimentaires et des aliments pour animaux, crée des opportunités d'emploi pour une très grande population ; répondre aux besoins en protéines animales de l'économie. À l'heure actuelle, l'industrie de l'élevage comprend des réserves de chasse, des centres de loisirs, la commercialisation du bétail, la transformation du bétail, la distribution de produits d'origine animale, des instituts de recherche, etc. sont tous acceptés comme une composante de la production animale moderne. Cette revue vise à documenter l'impact de la pandémie de Covid-19 sur la production animale et la sécurité alimentaire car elle implique principalement la durabilité de la vie humaine et de l'économie. Il a été observé que les protocoles et dispositions relatifs à la pandémie de Covid-19 interfèrent avec la chaîne d'approvisionnement du marché avec une production et une distribution altérées.
... Infected hosts, especially domestic ruminants, generally are asymptomatic although reproductive disorders such as abortions, infertility, sterility, stillbirth, retained placenta, and irregular repeat breeding are well recognized consequences in some animals and more so in small ruminants than cattle [17,23,24]. The clinical presentation of the disease negatively impacts livestock production systems leading to economic losses especially among smallholder farmers who are ill-informed about the disease [25]. ...
Full-text available
Q fever is a zoonotic disease, resulting from infection with Coxiella burnetii. Infection in cattle can cause abortion and infertility, however, there is little epidemiological information regarding the disease in dairy cattle in Tanzania. Between July 2019 and October 2020, a serosurvey was conducted in six high dairy producing regions of Tanzania. Cattle sera were tested for antibodies to C. burnetii using an indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. A mixed effect logistic regression model identified risk factors associated with C. burnetii seropositivity. A total of 79 out of 2049 dairy cattle tested positive with an overall seroprevalence of 3.9% (95% CI 3.06–4.78) across the six regions with the highest seroprevalence in Tanga region (8.21%, 95% CI 6.0–10.89). Risk factors associated with seropositivity included: extensive feeding management (OR 2.77, 95% CI 1.25–3.77), and low precipitation below 1000 mm (OR 2.76, 95% 1.37–7.21). The disease seroprevalence is relatively low in the high dairy cattle producing regions of Tanzania. Due to the zoonotic potential of the disease, future efforts should employ a “One Health” approach to understand the epidemiology, and for interdisciplinary control to reduce the impacts on animal and human health.
... Diseases, poor nutrition, the low genetic potential of indigenous breeds and deficient management systems, negatively impact the productivity of farm animals in African countries where livestock farming is at the core of local livelihoods (Perry and Grace 2009;FAO 2011). Fertility is mostly affected by various diseases or syndromes that quite often lead to sterility in some animals (De Kruif 2003); and structural defects can be seen on animal reproductive systems during physical examination. ...
Full-text available
Our review condensed evidence on the potential of medicinal plants to improve the reproductive performance of livestock. The success of any livestock farming operation is highly dependent on the reproductive performance of animals. However, infertility has limited the proficiency of livestock and resulted in economic losses. For centuries, farmers utilised medicinal plants extensively in managing reproductive disorders. These plants have few to no side effects, are cheap, easily accessible and readily available. Among others, the inclusion of Moringa olifera leaf extracts for 14 days at levels of 100–300 mg/kg body weight improved sperm characteristics. Zingiber officinale root extracts at levels of 500–1000 mg/kg body weight for 3 weeks increased sperm count, viability and mobility and testosterone. Furthermore, the increase in the volume of ejaculate and sperm concentration has been observed in sheep when Leucaena spp were added to their diets at 100–300 g/sheep/day for 60 days. However, there is little literature regarding the use of medicinal plants on ruminants, as the majority of studies have been laboratory-based and have used experimental animals, including rats and mice. Thus, future research is required through in vivo and in vitro studies to ascertain the efficacy of these medicinal plants in male ruminants.
... Livestock diseases are a major barrier to productivity for both male and female livestock keepers around the world. These diseases are damaging both at a national level, costing developing countries millions of dollars in lost revenue, as well as at an individual level, limiting the productivity of individual livestock keepers [1,2]. In Kenya, a country that derives 12% of its national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) from the livestock sector, two of the most devastating and influential livestock diseases experienced by livestock keepers are Newcastle Disease (ND) in poultry and Contagious Caprine Pleuropneumonia (CCPP) in goats [3]. ...
Full-text available
Livestock diseases are a major barrier to productivity for both male and female livestock keepers in Africa. In Kenya, two of the most devastating livestock diseases are Newcastle Disease (ND) in poultry and Contagious Caprine Pleuropneumonia (CCPP) in goats. Female livestock keepers tend to own more small ruminants (goats, sheep, etc.) and poultry and their livelihoods are adversely affected if their herds are not vaccinated against these diseases. Livestock farming has gender specific challenges and opportunities, with implications for the empowerment of women smallholder farmers, their household well-being, food security, and livelihoods. There is a need to estimate the level to which women benefit personally, socially, and economically from keeping livestock, yet there are very few studies that can measure if livestock production does in fact empower women smallholder livestock farmers. This study was done to examine linkages between women’s empowerment and access and control over livestock products and vaccines. The Women Empowerment in Livestock Index (WELI) tool, which was customized to include questions on livestock vaccine access, was used to capture baseline data on empowerment scores for women in Machakos county, Kenya, prior to implementation of animal health and vaccine test models. In total, 400 participants were surveyed in two wards of Machakos County, Kola and Kalama, which were purposively selected. Women’s empowerment was mapped to three domains (3DE): intrinsic agency (power within), instrumental agency (power to), and collective agency (power with) measured against adequacy in 13 indicators. Our results indicate that the household structure (female headed or dual headed household), age of respondents and number of members in a household influence the adequacy score. Work balance was the most significant negative contributor to women’s disempowerment. Women contributed the most to livestock productive activities and attained adequacy in this area compared to men, directly impacting the WELI score. Women smallholder livestock farmers report low CCPP and ND vaccination rates, minimal knowledge on livestock diseases, a lack of access to cold chain storage and rarely visited veterinarians. The WELI score was 0.81 indicating a high level of empowerment for women in this community compared to men leading us to conclude that the overall WELI score was not an accurate indicator of women‘s empowerment in Machakos County. However, the decomposability of the index allows us to disaggregate the drivers of change and to examine how individual indicators contribute to disempowerment.
... Livestock are crucial for the livelihoods of poor farmers, consumers, traders and laborers throughout the developing world (Herrero et al., 2013). Animal diseases and zoonoses are serious drawbacks to efficient livestock production and safe utilization of animal products worldwide (Perry and Grace, 2009). The serious socioeconomic consequences include production losses, loss of livelihoods, poverty, food insecurity, restriction of marketing opportunities, disincentives to investment and public-health risks (FAO, 2016). ...
Full-text available
Background: The field veterinary hospital records serve as indispensable sources of valuable information on various farm animal diseases of the respective areas. The current retrospective study was conducted to determine the distribution of clinical diseases of farm a Upazila veterinary hospital from January 2007 to December 2010. Methods: Animal, disease and related data from the official register books were stored using the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet program 2010. Descriptive statistics wer percentage of disease and conditions wit Results: Of the total 6825 clinical cases recorded from the patient register, cattle, goats and sheep were presented at 87.15%, 12.75% and 0.1%, respectiv (91%) followed by gyneco-obstetrical (6%) and surgical (2%) cases. According to etio nature, the most commonly observed disease categories were parasitic (20.35%), fever (4.67%), dermatitis (6.65%), metabolic and nutritional deficiency disorders (4.59%), anorexia (2.83%), diarrhea (2.52%), arthritis (1.47%), bloat (1.32%), pneumonia (1.29%), and FMD (1.27%). A higher proportion of female cattle and goats were presented compared to that of the males. S adult animals were presented as clinical cases than young animals. Conclusions: Among the clinical cases in the study area, parasitic diseases were commonly prevalent irrespective of season and host. Appropriate strategic measures should b infection in the study area to minimize farm production loss. The field veterinary hospital records serve as indispensable sources of valuable information on various farm animal diseases of the respective areas. The current retrospective study determine the distribution of clinical diseases of farm animals presented to Atpara Upazila veterinary hospital from January 2007 to December 2010. Animal, disease and related data from the official register books were stored using the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet program 2010. Descriptive statistics were performed and expressed as the percentage of disease and conditions with a 95% confidence interval. Of the total 6825 clinical cases recorded from the patient register, cattle, goats and sheep were presented at 87.15%, 12.75% and 0.1%, respectively. The vast majority cases were medicinal obstetrical (6%) and surgical (2%) cases. According to etio nature, the most commonly observed disease categories were parasitic (20.35%), fever (4.67%), metabolic and nutritional deficiency disorders (4.59%), anorexia (2.83%), diarrhea (2.52%), arthritis (1.47%), bloat (1.32%), pneumonia (1.29%), and FMD (1.27%). A higher proportion of female cattle and goats were presented compared to that of the males. S adult animals were presented as clinical cases than young animals. : Among the clinical cases in the study area, parasitic diseases were commonly prevalent irrespective of season and host. Appropriate strategic measures should be adopted to control such infection in the study area to minimize farm production loss. Parasite, metabolic, nutritional deficiency, dermatitis, anorexia, diarrhea All right reserved 0472/2022 The field veterinary hospital records serve as indispensable sources of valuable information on various farm animal diseases of the respective areas. The current retrospective study nimals presented to Atpara Animal, disease and related data from the official register books were stored using the e performed and expressed as the Of the total 6825 clinical cases recorded from the patient register, cattle, goats and sheep ely. The vast majority cases were medicinal obstetrical (6%) and surgical (2%) cases. According to etio-pathological nature, the most commonly observed disease categories were parasitic (20.35%), fever (4.67%), metabolic and nutritional deficiency disorders (4.59%), anorexia (2.83%), diarrhea (2.52%), arthritis (1.47%), bloat (1.32%), pneumonia (1.29%), and FMD (1.27%). A higher proportion of female cattle and goats were presented compared to that of the males. Similarly, more : Among the clinical cases in the study area, parasitic diseases were commonly prevalent e adopted to control such All right reserved 0472/2022
... Livestock is vital for many economies in developing countries. Even though the livestock sub-sector contributes much to the national economies of sub-Saharan African countries, its development is hampered by different constraints [11]. These include rampant animal diseases, which result in loss of livestock and farm productivity, reduction in market opportunity, and impairment of human welfare. ...
Full-text available
A cross-sectional study was conducted from January 2020 to July 2020 in Balcad district which was based on questionnaire and interview of the livestock diseases and specialists of traditional knowledge. The aim of this study was to assess the traditional knowledge of major livestock diseases and their medicinal plants used to treat in Balcad district. The study found out that the majority of animal owners use medicinal plants 93% as traditional treatment and only 5% were used to burn as treatment of some animal disease. In the current study it was found and recorded many types of plants used as traditional treatment were most (12%) of animal owners used Cadia purpurea (Gogobbo), for mange (Cadho) treatment, 10% of the respondents used Aloevero (Dacar) for cattle trypanosomiasis, 7% of the mused Acacianubica benth (Gumar) for FMD (Cabeeb) treatment, another 7% of the respondents mentioned they use Dhiti for nasal inflammation (san boor) treatment, 6% use Acacia tortilis (Qurac) for skin scar (Nabraha jirka) treatment, 5% use Terminalia prunioides (Hareeri) for ear inflammation, 5% use Sesamothamnus busseanus engl (Salaamaco/Saleemac) for wrapped fractures, 4% use Acacia senegal (Cadaad) for pneumonia treatment, 3% use Dogbera glabra (Garas) for placental retention treatment of animals, 3% use Commiphora Erethrraea (Hadi) for treatment of diarrhea in animal. The study also revealed that all different parts of the medicinal plants have been used except the flower part and also different methods of preparation and modes of application were used for remedy preparation, however the widely used plant parts in the preparation of remedies in the study area were root, followed by leaf. Several methods of administration of traditional remedies were also found out by the study which depends on the particular disease to be treated. Crushing of plant parts, fumigation, Wrapping, were the common methods of preparation in the study area. However, crushing was found to be the most common method of preparations in the area as the respondents reveal. Regarding routes of remedy administration, the commonly used route for the administration of traditional medicine in the study area were oral, topical, nasal drop, injection and Ear drop routes were also used at lower levels. Therefore, it is extremely necessary to document and disseminate indigenous knowledge in order to help and share the different uses of plants as animal health care and to promote different conservation measures.
Lumpy skin disease (LSD) is a notifiable re-emerging transboundary viral disease of bovines that inflicts heavy losses in affected livestock farms. Genetic variations contribute substantially to the inter-individual differences in the immune response against disease agents. The present study aimed to evaluate the genetic basis of differential immune response in Vrindavani cattle by comparing the hematological, biochemical and cytokine genes’ expression profiles of LSD-affected and unaffected animals. After 21 days of the outbreak at the farm, the animals were grouped as affected (those who developed symptoms) and unaffected/healthy (those who did not). Standard hematological and biochemical parameters were evaluated in both the groups. Expression profiling of important Th1 (IL2, INFG and GMCSF) and Th2 (IL4, IL6 and IL10) cytokines was also performed via a relative quantification approach using real-time PCR. Erythrogram and leucogram analyses revealed significant differences in total leucocyte count (TLC: 14.18 ± 0.74 versus 11.38 ± 0.68 x103/µL), hemoglobin (Hb: 8.66 ± 0.42 versus 10.84 ± 0.17 g%) and percentage of neutrophils (46.40 ± 1.98 versus 35.40 ± 2.11%), lymphocytes (49.40 ± 1.99 versus 62.40 ± 1.86) and monocytes (4.20 ± 0.37 versus 2.40 ± 0.40) between the affected and healthy animals, respectively. The production of liver enzymes (SGOT and SGPT) was significantly higher in affected animals (74.18 ± 4.76 and 59.51 ± 2.75) when compared to the healthy counterparts (65.95 ± 9.18 and 39.21 ± 3.31). The expression profiling of Th1 and Th2 cytokines revealed significant differences between the two groups, except IL10. The expression of IL2, GMCSF and IL6 were upregulated in healthy animals while that of INFG, IL4 and IL10 were upregulated in LSD-affected animals. The highest abundance was observed for IL2 transcripts in healthy animals among all assessed cytokines with log2fold change of 1.61 as compared to affected counterparts. Overall, the immune response in healthy animals (after exposure to LSD virus) was predominated by the expression of Th1 cell proliferation and there was an increased production of pro-inflammatory cytokines as compared to the affected counterparts. The results revealed that the effective immune response to LSD in cattle consists of changes in hematological and biochemical parameters and altered expression profile of cytokines with enhanced phagocytosis and lymphocyte recruitment. Furthermore, optimal expression of Th1 cytokines is required for maintaining optimal health against infectious insult with LSD virus in cattle.
Full-text available
Background: Foot and Mouth disease is a notifiable trans-boundary disease, which is endemic in a large area of Sub-Saharan Africa, including Uganda. Recently, the disease has emerged from new areas, with high impact, hence threatening the food security and livelihoods of different animal owners. This study described the temporal and spatial distribution of FMD in Uganda, and factors associated with its occurrence Methods: Data previously archived at the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) in Uganda, from 2010 to 2021, were analyzed using Microsoft Excel, QGIS and R software Results: A total of 22,690 FMD cases were reported in Uganda between 2010 and 2021 with an average and median of 1169 and 37 outbreaks per year respectively. In this period, FMD was reported at least once in 58 districts (43%) of all districts of the country (n = 135). The occurrence of FMD outbreaks was found to be seasonal with peak outbreaks in November and a low in August. FMD was reported all over the country, with the majority of cases 45% (10,211) reported from Eastern, 38% (8,685) from western region, 6% (1,354) from northern region and 11% (2,440) from central region. Most FMD cases were reported during the dry month of November, January, and February. Conclusion: FMD occurred in all the four regions of the country and showed statistically significant decrease in the long-term trend. Numbers of outbreaks were relatively higher during dry season. The spatial and temporal distribution identified in this study should be considered in controlling the disease. As unregulated and frequent animal movements are the likely causes of high outbreak occurrence during the dry season, animal movement regulations should be considered for the long-term control of FMD. Recommendation: Strategic vaccination of animals should commence at least a month prior to the onset dry season to ensure immunity against the virus, together with restrictions on animal movements during dry season and farmers have to be aware about the risk of unrestricted animal movement.
Full-text available
There is a need to improve the management of endemic diseases of livestock in resource limited settings as a means towards improved human nutrition and livelihoods. Gastrointestinal nematode infections (GIN) are some of the most significant endemic diseases, and improved management would significantly improve animal health and production. Anthelmintics play a role in GIN management; however, very few anthelmintics are available in many low-middle income countries. Utilising a limited range of anthelmintic classes may increase selection for anthelmintic resistance, as well as reducing mitigation strategies once resistance establishes. Strategies to reduce other selective pressures for anthelmintic resistance are therefore of heightened importance. Avoiding anthelmintic underdosing is one such strategy, and whilst it may appear simple, it can be challenging in settings without access to accurate bodyweight measurement. Many previous studies have used thoracic girth as a practical proxy for bodyweight in goats; however, they have rarely considered the potential impact of natural variation on therapeutic doses. Here, the relationship between bodyweight and thoracic girth was modelled using data from 820 goats from three Malawian biomes in two seasons, with the specific aim of avoiding underestimation of bodyweight. This resulted in the development of a simple linear regression (readily convertible into a weigh tape) that was internally cross-validated and then successfully tested against data from an additional 352 Malawian goats (from the same 3 biomes, across two seasons). Further testing using a historical dataset of 150 goats from Assam, India suggests that a more globally generalisable approach would be feasible.