MERS-COV (40): ANIMAL RESERVOIR, CAMELS, REVIEW, FAO

Posted on 19TH JUN 2017
tagged MERS-CoV, Worldwide

A ProMED-mail post
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International Society for Infectious Diseases
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Date: Mon 19 Jun 2017 [accessed]
Source: FAO fcc-empres information sheets, 6, Jun 2017 [summ., edited]
http://www.fao.org/3/a-i7350e.pdf

Introduction
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Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is an emerging threat for public health globally and can be a cause of severe respiratory infection in humans, especially those suffering other ailments. The disease is new to humans and was first reported in 2012 in Saudi Arabia.

Dromedary camels are thought to be a natural reservoir of MERS-CoV and can be a source of infection for humans. Camels are widely spread throughout the world, mainly in arid areas, and serve important economic, livelihood, nutritional and social purposes.

MERS-CoV is transmitted from person to person through close contact, especially in healthcare settings. However, there is currently no evidence of sustained person-to-person spread. Additionally, no vaccine or specific treatment is currently available to prevent MERS-CoV transmission.

To date, 27 countries have reported human cases of MERS-CoV in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia and North America. Nevertheless, the majority of cases have so far occurred in Saudi Arabia where according to some studies - MERS-CoV has been circulating in camels since at least 1992. All cases and outbreaks outside of this region can be traced back to someone who travelled from the Middle East.

Dromedary Camels and MERS-CoV: filling knowledge gaps
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It is thought that MERS-CoV originally evolved from a bat coronavirus and jumped to dromedary camels some time ago. Dromedaries are considered the natural host for MERS-CoV, although it has also been found in alpacas living in close proximity to infected camels.

The challenges of MERS CoV at the human-animal interface can only be met using a One Health approach involving multi-sectoral collaboration, communication and cooperation.

FAO plays a coordinating role to reduce the risk of MERS-CoV at the human-animal interface by working with global partners such as the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) and the World Health Organization (WHO). The 3 organizations convene joint technical and expert meetings to advance knowledge and guide policy.

FAO monitors regularly the MERS-CoV situation in humans and animals, issues monthly updates, publishes qualitative risk assessments, provides access to information and knowledge, and promotes research development with relevant institutions to address knowledge gaps in the transmission of MERS-CoV in animals and from animals to humans.

Furthermore, FAO assists countries in developing communication strategies to ensure appropriate information reaches the public on MERS-CoV and avoid possible negative impacts on the livestock industry. FAO is currently implementing several projects on MERS -CoV in Africa and Middle East. Cross-sectional and longitudinal surveillance studies are being conducted in 4 countries - Egypt, Ethiopia, Jordan, and Kenya - at different nodes along the camel value chain including breeding herds, live camel markets, quarantine stations, and slaughterhouses. Camel value chain analyses are also being carried out to characterize the sector.

Approximately 75 laboratory staff in 3 national veterinary laboratories have been trained on MERS-CoV diagnostic testing while 50 field personnel received training in sample collection and transportation, clinical examinations and data collection.

In implementing the MERS-CoV projects, FAO works closely with funding partners (e.g. U.S. Agency for International Development - USAID), national governments, academic institutions, collaborating centers, and producer associations.

More studies are planned to better understand routes of transmission to humans, seasonality factors, and potential animal host species, including wildlife.

In addition, the collation of data that captures the distribution of virus circulation in countries with high camel population densities can offer opportunities to understand human 'spillover' events.

Information from these studies would be important also for identification and evaluation of socioeconomic factors that are associated with risk of MERS-CoV infection in camel populations.

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Communicated by:
ProMED-mail

[OIE's Case definition for the reporting of MERS-CoV in camels (as an emerging disease), has been updated in May 2017 (available at http://www.oie.int/scientific-expertise/specific-information-and-recomme...).

According to the updated text, a dromedary camel may be laboratory confirmed as a positive case by virus isolation or detection of viral nucleic acid. The presence of viral nucleic acid can be confirmed by:
- a positive RT-PCR result on at least 2 specific genomic targets;
- a single positive target with sequencing of a second target;
or
- a single positive target with positive result in a rapid MERS CoV antigen test.

During its meeting of 7-10 Feb 2017, OIE's Biological Standards Commission noted that there was no chapter on MERS CoV in the Terrestrial Manual. As such a chapter would help OIE member countries in the laboratory confirmation of positive cases; the Commission recommended that the OIE ad hoc Group on MERS CoV develop a chapter in consultation with other MERS CoV experts. - Mod.AS

A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at: http://healthmap.org/promed/p/8854.]

See Also
MERS-CoV (29): Qatar, animal reservoir, camels 20170527.5066519
MERS-CoV (28): Qatar, Saudi Arabia (HA) 20170524.5059234
MERS-CoV (23): Saudi Arabia (AS) animal reservoir, human contact, OIE, RFI 20170421.4986081
MERS-CoV (21): Egypt, animal reservoir, camel, ex Sudan, control, RFI 20170405.4948727
MERS-CoV (18): Africa, animal reservoir, camels, 2015, research 20170331.4939980
2016
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MERS-CoV (87): Jordan, animal reservoir, camelids, OIE 20160802.4385317
MERS-CoV (66): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camelids, OIE, RFI 20160618.4294807
MERS-CoV (59): animal reservoir, review 20160610.4275921
MERS-CoV (40): Egypt, animal reservoir, camel, ex Sudan, susp. 20160316.4097730
MERS CoV (21): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel, comment 20160216.4023772
MERS CoV (19): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel, prevention, RFI 20160204.3995194
MERS-CoV (18): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel, vaccination, comment 20160203.3990284
MERS-CoV (16): Saudi Arabia (MK) animal reservoir, OIE, RFI 20160201.3985175
MERS-CoV (11): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel, vaccination, comment 20160126.3966528
MERS-CoV (09): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel, vaccination considered 20160125.3963370
2015
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MERS-CoV (163): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel, research, vaccine 20151219.3873486
MERS-CoV (155): animal reservoir, camel, research, RFI 20151110.3781744
MERS-CoV (154): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel, case control 20151105.3768115
MERS-CoV (143): Kenya, animal reservoir, camel, serosurveillance 20151017.3722887
MERS-CoV (141): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel debated, RFI 20151016.3720479
MERS-CoV (131): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camels, Hajj, RFI 20150914.3643612
MERS-CoV (130): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camels, Hajj 20150912.3641457
MERS-CoV (114): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camels, Hajj 20150823.3597358
MERS-CoV (104): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel debate 20150810.3569207
MERS-CoV (63): animal reservoir, bat 20150612.3432410
MERS-CoV (48): UAE (Dubai) animal reservoir, camel 20150527.3386738
MERS-CoV (29): UAE (Dubai) animal reservoir, camel 20150303.3204214
MERS-CoV (27): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel 20150302.3200502
MERS-CoV (12): animal reservoir, camels debated, case-control study, RFI 20150122.3109335
MERS-CoV (09): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camels debated 20150117.3098294
2014
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MERS-CoV (67): Iran (SB) animal reservoir, camel, ex Pakistan, RFI 20141219.3039497
MERS-CoV (49): Iran (SB), animal reservoir, camel conf, OIE 20141029.2912385
MERS-CoV (46): animal reservoir, camel, S.Arabia, vaccination, Iran susp, RFI 20141027.2904032
MERS-CoV (40): animal reservoir, camel, milk susp, RFI 20141022.2889778
MERS-CoV (24): animal reservoir, camel, experimental infection 20140929.2813981
MERS-CoV (09): animal reservoir, update, OIE, WHO 20140818.2700879
MERS-CoV (07): animal reservoir, camel, bat 20140720.2623848
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (79): Qatar (OIE) Kuwait (susp) animal res, RFI 20140611.2533756
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (77): S Arabia, Qatar, animal res, control, RFI 20140607.2525113
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (75): Animal res, camel, zoonotic aspects 20140604.2518134
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (66): Oman (SH), camel conf, OIE 20140523.2493556
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (62): Saudi Arabia, Africa, animal res., camel 20140517.2478989
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (46): Saudi Arabia, animal reservoir, camel 20140430.2440228
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (41): Oman, animal reservoir, camel 20140426.2432011
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (39): Qatar (RY) animal res., camel, OIE 20140424.2426491
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (34): animal reservoir, camel, Saudi Arabia, RFI 20140419.2414479
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (19): Saudi Arabia, UAE, WHO 20140325.2356854
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (10): camel, Sudan, Ethiopia 20140228.2307254
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (09): animal reservoir, camel, Saudi Arabia 20140227.2303420
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (02): animal reservoir, camel, UAE, serology 20140104.2151807
2013
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MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (106): animal reservoir, camel, Qatar, OIE 20131231.2145606
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (101): animal reservoir, camel, goat 20131217.2120936
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (98): animal reserv/camel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia 20131213.2114362
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (95): animal reservoir, camel, Qatar 20131129.2082942
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (94): UAE (Abu Dhabi), Qatar 20131129.2082330
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (93): animal res., camel conf, Qatar (RY) OIE 20131129.2082115
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (87): animal res. camel susp. precautions 20131113.2053932
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (85): animal reservoir, camel, susp, official 20131112.2051424
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (83): animal reservoir, camel, susp, RFI 20131112.2050868
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (75): role of bats in emergence, Saudi Arabia new cases 20131011.1996687
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (68): animal reservoir, camel, research 20130907.1929762
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (66): animal reservoir, discussion 20130904.1922998
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (61): animal reservoir, bat, comment 20130828.1907567
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (57): animal reservoir, bats 20130822.1895035
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (53): animal reservoir, serology, FAO 20130811.1875301
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (52): animal reservoir, research, serology 20130809.1872008
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (50): animal reservoir, OIE 20130727.1849047
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (48): animal reservoir, bat susp 20130725.1844412
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (39): animal reservoir, research 20130706.1810714
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (25): Saudi Arabia, genome 20130612.1768944
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (10): animal reservoir, research 20130524.1735984
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (03): animal reservoir, RFI 20130519.1723544
MERS-CoV - Eastern Mediterranean (02): WHO summary, ECDC risk assessments 20130518.1721873
Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean (15): camel exposure 20130405.1623188
Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean: bat reservoir 20130122.1508656
2012
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Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean (06): comments 20121225.1468821
Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean (05): WHO, transmission route 20121223.1465597
Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean (04): receptor charact. 20121211.1446670
Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean (03): research, ISARIC (UK) 20121208.1443486
Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean (02): diagnostics 20121207.1442473
Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean: WHO, Jordan, conf., RFI 20121130.1432498
Novel coronavirus - Saudi Arabia (19): Singapore: NOT 20121129.1430397
Novel coronavirus - Saudi Arabia (18): WHO, new cases, cluster 20121123.1421664
Novel coronavirus - Saudi Arabia (10): WHO, revised case def. 20120930.1315960
Novel coronavirus - Saudi Arabia: human isolate 20120920.1302733
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