History and epidemiology of foot-and-mouth disease in Afghanistan: A retrospective study

Arash Osmani, Ian Duncan Robertson, Ihab Habib, Ahmad Arash Aslami

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11 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Foot and mouth disease (FMD) is endemic in Afghanistan with serotypes O, A and Asia 1 being prevalent. A retrospective study of data collected through passive surveillance of outbreaks of FMD in Afghanistan from 1995 to 2016 was undertaken to determine the temporal and spatial distribution of FMD in the country. Results: A total of 4171 outbreaks were reported between 1995 and 2008 with a strong correlation between the number of outbreaks and the number of provinces (r = 0.85, s = 68.2, p < 0.001); and between the number of outbreaks and the number of districts containing infected animals (r = 0.68, s = 147.8, p = 0.008). Of 7558 samples collected from livestock originating from 34 provinces in 2009, 2011 and 2013-2015, 54.1% were test positive (FMDV 3ABC-trapping ELISA) and the prevalence varied significantly between years (χ2 = 263.98, df = 4, P < 0.001). Clinically suspected cases were reported in 2016 with a substantial positive correlation (r = 0.70, P < 0.001) between the number of districts with cases and the number of reported cases. Serotype O was the predominant serotype detected during the study period, although serotypes A and Asia1 were also detected. Cattle were involved in all outbreaks in the study period and infections were detected in all years of the study in Hirat province in the north-west (bordering Iran), Nangarhar province in the east (bordering Pakistan) and Kabul province in the centre of the country. Conclusions: The current paper was the first analysis of existing data focusing on the spatiotemporal distribution of FMD in Afghanistan. The findings from this study provide valuable direction for further research to understand the epidemiology of FMD and its control in Afghanistan.

Original languageEnglish
Article number340
JournalBMC Veterinary Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Oct 15 2019


  • Afghanistan
  • Epidemiology
  • Foot and mouth disease
  • Passive surveillance
  • Retrospective study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Veterinary


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