Title:  Hemorrhagic Disease: New Viruses and Changing Patterns
Author(s): David E. Stallknecht-Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia
Year: 2014
Abstract: Hemorrhagic disease (HD) is caused by related orbiviruses in the bluetongue virus (BTV) and epizootic hemorrhagic disease virus (EHDV) serogroups. These viruses infect numerous wild ungulates in North America and are transmitted by biting midges in the genus Culicoides. White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus, WTD) are highly susceptible to HD, but clinical disease and potential population impacts are highly variable throughout their range. In general, the disease is most severe in more northern latitudes where HD occurs sporadically and where population immunity is minimal. In contrast, areas of enzootic stability exist in areas of the Southwestern United States where high infection rates occur annually but clinical disease is rarely reported. In WTD, this variation in clinical response is believed to be associated with variation in both acquired and innate immunity. In fawns, passive immunity also may be protective but this has not been sufficiently evaluated. There is recent evidence that the epidemiology of both bluetongue and epizootic hemorrhagic disease are changing globally. In the United States (including southeastern states), multiple exotic serotypes of both BTV and EHDV have been detected since the late 1990s. Likewise, the range of HD and frequency of large regional outbreaks appears to be increasing. Potential impacts associated with these changes are not well documented or understood. Likewise, the ecological drivers behind these introductions and the changing epidemiologic patterns of HD are not adequately identified.

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