A survey of Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever in livestock and ticks in Ardabil Province, Iran during 2004-2005
Seyed Mojtaba Ghiasi
Mohammad Reza Eshraghian
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Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever (CCHF) is a viral haemorrhagic fever caused by the CCHF virus. It is mainly transmitted to humans and animals by ticks. In recent y, large numbers of livestock have been transported across the border areas of Ardabil Province resulting in an outbreak of CCHF in the adjacent districts. A comprehensive study was carried out to assess the epidemiological aspects of the disease in this province. In the study area, 130 ticks were collected from randomly selected villages and classified into 9 species of hard tick and 2 species of soft tick. All ticks were analyzed for the presence of CCHF virus genome using gel-based and real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reactions (RT-PCR). The results showed CCHF infection in almost 28% of ticks collectively. Also, of 56 livestock sera, around 39% were IgG-positive. The presence of anti-CCHF virus IgG antibodies and the CCHF virus genome in ticks points to a great hidden threat of an outbreak in these districts. Those in high-risk professions in this province should be informed and trained on the risk of CCHF with urgency. © 2010 Informa UK Ltd.