Pathological and molecular investigation of velogenic viscerotropic Newcastle disease outbreak in a vaccinated chicken flocks
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Newcastle disease virus (NDV) belongs to genus Avulavirus and family Paramyxoviridae. There are thirteen serotypes named APMV-I (Avian Paramyxovirus-I) to APMV-13 of which NDV has been designated as APMV-1. The disease has been reported worldwide affecting both domestic and wild avian species. Morbidity and mortality rates up to 100% have been reported in cases of unvaccinated flocks. Stringent vaccination schedule is practiced in endemic/disease prone areas in order to prevent the disease. Despite this, NDV outbreaks have been reported even in cases of vaccinated populations. In this study we describe detailed pathological and molecular investigation that were undertaken in an organized poultry farm from Bareilly region, Uttar Pradesh, India, involving layer flocks which succumbed to ND outbreak in spite of following strict vaccination protocol. The mortality rate ranged from 76.80 to 84.41% in different flocks with an average mortality of 79.50%. Necropsied birds had gross lesions suggestive of viscerotropic ND including petechial hemorrhages on the proventricular tips, intestinal lumen with necrotic areas covered with hemorrhages, hemorrhagic cecal tonsils, para-tracheal edema and mottling of spleen. The characteristic histopathological lesions were mainly seen in the blood vessels and lymphoid tissues. Vascular changes characterized by congestion, edema, and hemorrhage were found in majority of the organs. Lymphocytolysis in spleen and cecal tonsils was evident. Immunohistochemical studies revealed positive signals mostly in macrophage and lymphocytes. PCR assay was done to confirm the NDV genome, which revealed an amplicon size of 356 bp. The phylogenetic analysis revealed the resemblance of the present isolate (ADS01) with class II genotype NDV XIIIA. The isolate belonged to velogenic NDV as the Minimum Lethal Dose (MLD) and Mean Death Time (MDT) for the present isolate were 10−8 and 41 h, respectively. Thus this study clearly demonstrates that in spite of strict vaccination regime and biosecurity procedures, ND continues to be rampant. Hence it is important to effectively administer the present vaccine in addition to strains matching to the field isolates to provide longer and optimal protection against spreading of virus by means of reducing the extent of viral shedding.
KeywordsGenotype Molecular characterization Pathology Poultry Vaccine mismatch Velogenic viscerotropic Newcastle disease virus
We thank the Director, ICAR-Indian Veterinary Research Institute for providing necessary facilities and support.
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