African Swine Fever (ASF) continues to spread across the Moscow region, the Russian veterinary services reports.
According to the regional department of the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance (Rosselkhoznadzor) following the discovery of ASF on 20 November in the Klin district, Zavidovo (hunting area), an outbreak also occurred in the Lotoshinsky district of the same hunting area, where at the end of December, it was revealed a few pigs died due to ASF.
Both districts is located on the border with the Tver region where the disease also continues to spread among wild boars. Specialists at the All-Russian Scientific Research Institute of Veterinary Virology and Microbiology selected samples from the carcasses of pigs that died in the Lotoshinsky and Klin districts, Zavidovo and isolated genetic material of the ASF virus.
ASF virus mutates
Meanwhile, Russian media reported that the ASF virus has mutated – unable to kill the carrier, creating a more active spread.
“The virus is mutating, for example, previously it was thought that the carrier would inevitably die, but wild boars began to develop immunity, not dying, but simply becoming a carrier of the virus,” explained the chairman of the state veterinary supervision of the Nizhny Novgorod Region, Yevgeny Kolobov.”
For domestic pigs this virus is always fatal. However, one boar – carrier of the virus – can affect up to 250 km a day, so even one animal can infect the entire region.”