Avian influenza refers to infection of birds with avian influenza Type A viruses. These viruses occur naturally among wild aquatic birds worldwide and can infect all type of poultry and other bird and animal species.
Poultry can be infected with avian influenza A viruses in their intestines and respiratory tract, but usually do not get sick. However, avian influenza A viruses are very contagious among birds and some of these viruses can sicken and even kill certain domesticated bird species including chickens, ducks, and turkeys.
Recently, outbreaks of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza have been increasing all over the world. In January 2020 alone, cases of H5N8 influenza have caused outbreaks in Hungary, Poland and Slovakia and caused the mortalities of about 13,000 birds. These outbreaks have been associated with indirect contact with wild birds and possibly infected fomites, vehicles or footwear.
By MSc Daisy Roijackers
Cleaning and disinfection is the first line of defence: how to make the right choice? For successful cleaning and disinfection, various aspects need to be carefully considered: Why is it so important to use a validated biocide? And what properties should a biocide possess to be effective under practical circumstances?
By prof. dr. J.A. (Arjan) Stegeman Arjan Stegeman
As professor in Farm Animal Health Arjan chairs a group that teaches veterinary medicine and herd health in farm animals. His research is focused at epidemiology of infections in farm animals with the aim to unravel the mechanisms that determine the distribution of infections in animal populations and establish the effectiveness of control measures. To accomplish this goal his group uses experimental, observational as well as modeling studies. Most of the research has been done in close collaboration with scientists studying the infection process at the individual level, because Arjan strongly believe that this helps understanding observations done at the population level. During his career he has studied epizootic, zoonotic as well as endemic diseases and the population dynamics of antibacterial resistance.
Enhancing biosecurity measures and vaccination are crucial steps in preventing the spread of the disease and protecting the flock from the deadly and infectious disease. Vaccination against A.I. has proven to be effective when the exact virus strain and clade is known, but it has been known that influenza viruses are extremely variable and even minor changes in their genetic make-up can render a vaccination protocol ineffective. These viruses are also quick to evolve and change their structure very quickly.
For disinfection, the investment into an effective, registered, tried and tested disinfectant is crucial in protecting the flock from A.I.. The disinfectant Intra Multi-Des GA produced by Intracare has been officially registered and tested against Avian Influenza viruses and therefore is recognized as one of the most powerful disinfectants on the market. Studies for registration by the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) as well as the Dutch and English relevant biocide authorities encompass strict environmental conditions for the testing of a disinfectant to ensure that the disinfectant is effective in all practical situations.