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Author Topic: Foot And Mouth Disease Outbreak Due to U.K Wet Weather on the cards?  (Read 79984 times)

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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Have a theory on Foot and Mouth Disease Outbreaks Corresponding with unusually wet weather in the United Kingdom.

Made a prediction for the last outbreak of F&M based on the widespread floods. The flooded areas were affected and this was related to the location of Pirbright Labs and localised virus sources. Nevertheless, the cattle were exposed to severe floods, high humidity which brings the animals immunity and temperature down to a level that enables infection to take place.

I Now want to stick my neck out and make another prediction.

I predict that Foot and Mouth Disease will plague the farming industry once again due to this unusually wet summer. Swine vesicular Fever and Blue-tongue also follow a similar pattern in relation to damp weather.

It is so wet here in Devon that Truffles have been found in gardens according to local news.

Already, people with skin conditions including eczema and psoriasis, are reporting increased problems.

Dry air is required to increase circulation. High Humidity compromises circulation causing a breakdown in tissue in hoof and mouth as the animal’s immune system and body temperature is lowered leaving it prone to infectious organisms.

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, Sudden adult death syndrome, and deaths of the infirm will also increase statistically.

Multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s and other neurological conditions will follow similar increases in diagnosis and relapses from those diagnosed.

Just hope we do not get a Bird Flu Outbreak to top it all off.

Fingers crossed and watching the news closely.

Hopefully I am wrong but I doubt it.  ;)

Andrew K Fletcher



Other realated thread:
http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=12733.0 

The information below was added 09/08/08 to remind readers of the way politicians managed F&M during the last major Nationwide outbreak.

Lest we forget!
http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/lest_we_forget.htm

Meanwhile an outbreak occurred in Holland. The Dutch implemented an immediate programme of vaccination, which suppressed the disease almost at once. The vaccinated animals were all slaughtered, but that was only done to satisfy the EU and its fears about its meat trading status. In Britain, the carnage, which had already seemed unimaginably barbaric, was about to enter an even more cataclysmic stage. The professor’s computer, like some latter day insatiable Moloch, demanded more and more blood sacrifices. The hit squads, by now not only officials but also the army, were roaming the countryside shooting, bludgeoning and drowning perfectly healthy animals.

The anecdotes from this period read like a lunatic’s account of a madman’s war. A mistake in a map grid reference caused the deaths, not only of a farmer’s livestock, but also his children’s pets. Other stock were killed through clerical error. 20,000 animals in Devon were saved at the last minute when a mistaken diagnosis was discovered. Pregnant sheep were shot at random while they climbed over the corpses of their fellows. Houses were broken into so that pets could be slaughtered. Mounds of carcases lay neglected and rotting in the fields, others were transported in lorries through hitherto unaffected areas with blood dripping onto the roads. Funeral pyres sent clouds of reeking smoke across housing estates. Burial pits containing up to half a million corpses leached blood and gore into water supplies. Thousands had to be dug up again.

It was at this point, towards the end of April, that Prof King announced that the disease was "totally under control". The election, which had now been put off to June, was uppermost in political minds and the spin-doctors took over. Suddenly the slaughter of healthy cattle was not so important and sheep were put in the firing line as the main spreaders of the virus. This had the other considerable political advantage that the EU had decreed that Britain was overpopulated with sheep anyway. From now on, it would be presentation that mattered. By now the total number of outbreaks had risen to 1,517. MAFF began to present only daily figures and wiped all the historical data off its web site. Slaughterings were reclassified so that they did not appear in the daily headline figure. Outbreaks were only included when they had been confirmed by subsequent testing. Farmers in Cumbria claimed that 24 outbreaks in their area had been reported by MAFF as only 9. Most sinister of all was a sudden conversion by MAFF vets from a tendency to label every suspicious case as FMD to a reluctance to admit that even the most obvious cases were the disease at all.

Dr Paul Kitchen, Britain’s leading expert on the disease, had been the most vehement critic of Prof Anderson’s computer. In the face of the way the election date had been changed, with the computer predictions following conveniently, he resigned his post as deputy head of Pirbright and took up a post in Canada.

In May, as the election campaign warmed up, the situation became really weird. The media, and particularly the BBC, were lulled into a remarkable quietude by the presentation skills of the spin-doctors. They behaved as if the crisis were all but over. Out in the real world of the British countryside the slaughter had entered a new crescendo. The daily average of animals killed reached a startling 32,000. The total number of deaths was now 6 million, nearly a tenth of Britain’s entire livestock. Ministers decreed the opening up of the countryside with photo-opportunities at appropriate tourist sites. Meanwhile, in places like Devon, Cumbria and Dumfries, the terror was being inflicted with greater intensity than ever. A few horror stories about armed gangs breaking in to slaughter pets leaked into the media. Farmers and animal sanctuary proprietors had begun legal challenges, many of which MAFF gave up on without a fight, by now being well aware that its actions had been quite illegal.

When another outbreak occurred in a new area, Settle in Yorkshire, MAFF suddenly refused to put the figures on its web site, citing the Data Protection Act as a reason. Secret mass burials were being carried out at the dead of night in ordinary landfill sites. Death squads of MAFF officials, backed up by dozens of policemen in riot gear, roamed the villages of Devon shooting every animal in sight. It was one of the most extraordinary examples of mass law-breaking in history, and all carried out be Government officials.

Tony Blair won his great gamble. Like his predecessor in large majority government, Margaret Thatcher, he was returned to power not by public enthusiasm for his own policies, but rather by the suicidal tendencies in the opposition. The aftermath was just as sordid as the conduct of the crisis itself. No official was punished for the massive breaches of the law. The only recognition that they had occurred was the Government’s seeking powers to slaughter more legally in future. Calls from many influential sources for a full inquiry were ignored and the Government spin-doctors dreamed up a scheme of three innocuous mini-inquiries as a substitute. MAFF had its name changed to DEFRA, but they were the same people in the same offices with the same mind set. In the week after the election 80,000 animals were killed and in the following week 93,000. The government also began to speak of restricting farming to those with licences to carry it out.

The epidemiologists had the last word. Prof Anderson claimed in an article in Nature that one million animals and four hundred farms could have been saved if his cull policy had been "fully enforced". Even more bizarrely, Prof King stated in a TV interview that next time "vaccination would have to be top of the agenda", not explaining why next time would be different from the last. Nearly eight million animals, one eighth of all those in Britain and most of them healthy, had been slain. Mass bankruptcies occurred throughout the rural economy. Industries ranging from hotel chains to hot air balloon manufacturers were devastated. The total cost to the British economy was in the range 10 to 20 billion pounds. Promises of Government aid faded away in the miasma of bureaucratic manoeuvring and EU regulation.

And, as occurred in Holland, it could all have been avoided with a simple programme of vaccination. It was all done in the name of a theoretical disease free status, which had ironically been invented by the British. Above all, it was yet another triumph for the science of epidemiology. If you think such an ironic remark unduly provocative, consider the summing up a year later by Professor David King, the UK Government Chief Scientific Adviser, who described the handling of the foot-and-mouth epidemic as "quite an achievement . . . a magnificent record". He told the BBC Today programme that securing Britain’s status as an FMD-free country was a cause for "celebration". Members of the European Parliament, among others, took rather a different view.



« Last Edit: 30/08/2008 13:04:26 by Andrew K Fletcher »


 

Offline Bored chemist

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Funny, I thought F+M was caused by a virus and that the reason it wasn't here was because we quarantined the virus.
The outbreak from Pirbirght was due to shoddy procedures and equipment.
 

Offline Moron

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and I predict that due to the recent wet weather, farmers will get muddy boots!
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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BC you can't quarantine a virus. The virus is here all the time. Just takes adverse weather and high humidity to lower the animals resisence to the pathogen and we have another outbreak. The virus may or may not have come from Pirbright, but let us remember that Pirbright must have isolated the virus from a former outbreak.

RE Muddy Boots. During all of the last major outbreaks of F&M in the UK farmers and veterinary surgeons have indeed been knee deep in mud, urine and cow dung. But more to the point so were the farm animals. Was it a coincidence that these animals that developed the disease were in low lying river valley areas and subject to serious flooding?

Funny, I thought F+M was caused by a virus and that the reason it wasn't here was because we quarantined the virus.
The outbreak from Pirbirght was due to shoddy procedures and equipment.
 

Offline rosalind dna

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Andrew if your analysis of the causes for the UK's animals getting foot and mouth is because
of wet conditions, floods.

Then how come that F & M has not occured this summer and it's been a wet one?
 

Offline rosy

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Eh? You can, and people do, impose quarantines for viruses. They don't actually transfer by magic, if infected and uninfected animals/people are kept seperate then the chances of disease transfer are greatly reduced.

The effectiveness of the quarantine is somewhat dependent on the resiliance of the virus and whether and for how long it can survive in the environment outside the organism.

I don't know what the infection mechanism of FMD is, but certainly skin tends to be softened by being wet all the time so if animals are in a damp field they might be more likely to get cuts on their feet so if that's a common infection route then it might be up a bit... but FMD is a systemic rather than a local disease as I understand it, so I don't think the state of the feet is particularly important otherwise.

A far more likely reason for increased transmission, I'd have thought, in particularly wet weather is that if there's lots of surface water washing from one field to another then it will facilitate transmission between herds.
 

Offline Bored chemist

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"Was it a coincidence that these animals that developed the disease were in low lying river valley areas and subject to serious flooding? "
Not entirely, the drains from the lab ran downhill in the way drains usually do.
The idea that bad weather causes F+M is odd to say the least, wet Summers are not rare in the UK but F+M outbreaks are.
Also, please dont waste time saying things like "you can't quarantine a virus.", at least not while you live in a country that has been kept free of rabies for decades. Also, don't say "The virus is here all the time." unless you have real evidence to back it up.
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2008%5C07%5C12%5Cstory_12-7-2008_pg12_11
Rainy season linked to foot-and-mouth disease in Landhi
Daily Times Monitor

KARACHI: Experts who recently published their study on the world’s largest buffalo colony, which happens to be right here in Karachi, have urged farmers and the government to carry out double vaccinations to prevent the spread of foot-and-mouth disease which is endemic in Pakistan.

According to the paper - ‘Epidemiology of foot-and-mouth disease in Landhi Dairy Colony, Pakistan, the world largest Buffalo colony’ - published in Virology Journal in April, experts have studied the disease in the Landhi Dairy Colony (LDC), located in the suburbs of Karachi. LDC is the largest buffalo colony in the world, with more than 300,000 animals (around 95% buffaloes and 5% cattle, as well as an unknown number of sheep and goats). Each month from April 2006 to April 2007 the experts collected mouth-swabs from apparently healthy buffaloes and cattle.

The tests showed that the infection was endemic in the colony, with peaks in August 2006, December 2006 and February 2007 to March 2007. There was a significant link to the rainy seasons, which includes the coldest time of the year and Eid. They discovered that 88% of all questioned farmers vaccinate their animals.

The experts suggested twice annual mass vaccination of all buffaloes and cattle in the colony as part of a control programme. These mass vaccinations should best take place shortly before the beginning of the two rainy periods, e.g. in June and September. Those vaccinations should be in addition to the already individually performed vaccinations of single animals, as the latter usually targets only newly introduced animals. This suggested combination of mass vaccination of all large ruminants with the already performed individually vaccination should provide a continuous high level of herd immunity in the entire colony.

Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is a highly contagious and economically important disease caused by foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV). Animals that can be affected include cattle, buffaloes, sheep, goats, pigs and wild ruminants.

FMD is endemic in Pakistan and causes huge economic losses to commercial cattle and buffalo owners. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) there are no proper arrangements for providing vaccine to the farmers and the open market is flooded with uncontrolled vaccine of doubtful efficiency.

FMD is considered endemic in both Pakistan and the neighbouring countries of India, Afghanistan, Iran and China and those serotypes are a continued problem in Pakistan.

Pakistan considers itself as having a seasonal, low-level, sporadic occurrence of FMD (Pakistan reported around 10–30 outbreaks per year until year 2000 after which no information is available). Animals are only vaccinated upon request and the yearly number of vaccine doses used varies between 12,000 to 95,000 doses for cattle and 7,000 to 60,000 for buffaloes in the years from 1997–2002 (no data available after 2002). This amount of vaccine is likely in addition to an unknown amount of open market, uncontrolled vaccines, but is nevertheless not much considering that Pakistan has a population of 51.1 million cattle, 56.9 million buffaloes, 50.3 million sheep and 123.9 million goats.

The majority of commercial dairy farmers is vaccinating its animals against FMD, either with imported trivalent vaccine, e.g. Aftovax (Merial, France), or with a locally produced monovalent vaccine (serotype O). Major challenges to control FMD in Pakistan relate, in part, to the lack of sufficient resources for diagnosis and continuous FMD genotype surveillance, but also the difficulties of controlling the vaccine market, as well as the lack of basic biosecurity awareness and control of animal movements. The latter is also hampered by the annual religious festival Eid ul-Adza, where thousands of buffaloes, cattle




The virus can be destroyed by high heat, low humidity, or some disinfectants, but may remain viable on contaminated objects or in frozen or chilled carcasses and animal byproducts for up to two years (USDA, 1994; MAFF, 2001). The disease spreads by exposure to infected or "carrier" animals or contaminated equipment, facilities, vehicles, roads, and common materials used in animal husbandry. Humans and other nonsusceptible animals may spread the disease. International travelers may spread the disease via contaminated clothing and shoes or by carrying contaminated food products across international borders. Long-distance spread can occur under certain conditions of topography, atmospheric conditions, high humidity, and wind (USDA, 1994; EUFMD, 2001).
http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0HIC/is_3_16/ai_80848245
 

Offline Bored chemist

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The important bits there are
"The tests showed that the infection was endemic in the colony," and
"FMD is endemic in Pakistan"
Also "The virus can be destroyed by high heat, low humidity, or some disinfectants, but may remain viable on contaminated objects or in frozen or chilled carcasses and animal byproducts for up to two years "
So, since there was more than a 2 year break, the virus had to have cme from somewher other than the fields.

 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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The important bits:
As you state low humidity destroys the virus. Therefore High humidity must contribute to its survival and infection rate.

Infected animals were taken into warm clean dry laboratory conditions to be studied and they all recovered completely. Fact!

Special high humidity chambers are being manufactured to study infected animals in, so that they remain infected.

Animals in arid / dry areas, providing there is no artificially high humidity from intensive irrigations systems remain unafected.

Animals in flood plains deluged by rain become suseptable. Ironically so do human offspring and adults. High humidity lowers both animal and human abilities to combat infections.

http://www.namibian.com.na/2008/August/national/081B52DB93.html
Friday, August 1, 2008 - Web posted at 8:50:59 AM GMT
Foot-and-mouth disease SOS in the Kavango
BRIGITTE WEIDLICH
THE Ministry of Agriculture stopped all livestock movements in all regions north of the veterinary cordon fence yesterday following an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in the Kavango Region near Divundu.
The temporary ban includes grass, thatch and "other plant material", which may also not be transported, and meat exports from the Oshakati abattoir have also been stopped until further notice.
Four surveillance teams have been deployed and the results of laboratory tests are expected by Saturday.
"The immediate area around Kamutjona village in the Mukwe constituency 16 kilometres south-east of Divundu has been designated as a containment zone," Andrew Ndishishi, Permanent Secretary in the Agriculture Ministry, said in a statement yesterday afternoon.
"The outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is suspected to have been transmitted from wild buffalo in the nearby Mohambo Game Park, which are long-term carriers of the FMD virus."
Roadblocks have been set up in the area, where 15 cattle with FMD were detected at four homesteads on Monday.
The area around Kamutjona village is home to about 900 cattle belonging to villagers.
"A temporary but complete ban of livestock movement from region to region in the whole buffer zone has been imposed, which are the areas north of the veterinary cordon fence.
The areas include the Kavango, Oshikoto, Oshana, Ohangwena and Kunene Regions," Ndishishi said. "Cattle in quarantine camps awaiting slaughter will be allowed to be processed at the Oshakati abattoir, but a moratorium on meat exports from there has been imposed," Ndishishi added. The restrictions were necessary to allow the Directorate of Veterinary services to fully investigate the extent of the FMD outbreak A gradual lifting of the restrictions will be announced in due course. Due to an earlier outbreak of FMD in the Caprivi Region this year, livestock movements there have been stopped already and the abattoir at Katima Mulilo has closed down for the time being..


We shall have to wait and see if there is another outbreak on the cards due to this unusually wet summer.

Andrew

« Last Edit: 16/08/2008 19:05:46 by Andrew K Fletcher »
 

Offline Bored chemist

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"As you state low humidity destroys the virus. Therefore High humidity must contribute to its survival and infection rate."
Damp might help, but the UK is generally damp. There generally isn't any virus about so we don't get outbreaks.

"Infected animals were taken into warm clean dry laboratory conditions to be studied and they all recovered completely. Fact!"
Most anoimals infected with FMD survive so there's nothing special about this observation.

"Animals in arid / dry areas, providing there is no artificially high humidity from intensive irrigations systems remain unafected."
The disease in endemic in much of Africa, Asia, and South America. They can't all be wet all the time.
Outbreaks tend not to occur in Winter when the weather is at it's coldest and wettest.

If there's another outbreak of FMD this year it will be traced (as the 1967, 2001, and 2007 outbreaks were) to a source of the virus.

 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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Glad you mentioned the last outbreaks because every single one of them was plagued with widespread floods.
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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Complicated development of cattle and poultry diseases warned
09:31' 24/07/2008 (GMT+7) 
 
Pigs suffering from blue ear disease are culled.
 
VietNamNet Bridge - Over the past two weeks, in the whole country, two more "outbreaks" of bird flu disease have been reported in provinces of Dong Thap and Nghe An, blue ear diseases have occurred in six more provinces, in which Quang Tri, Thua Thien – Hue and Ba Ria – Vung Tau have been hardest hit, while foot-and-mouth diseases in Cao Bang and Quang Ninh have been gradually controlled.

The announcement is made by the Veterinary Department at a meeting in Hanoi on July 22 by the National Steering Board For Bird Flu Control and Prevention.

The Board said that the resistance of cattle and poultry will reduce in the coming time due to abnormal weather conditions, thus the danger of new outbreaks occurrence is still looming large, increasing the danger of blue ear epidemic spread, threatening the Central Highlands and the South Eastern provinces.

So, the Board requests localities to strictly monitor and stamp out the outbreaks of the diseases. Localities which are yet to be hit by the diseases should get ready chemicals and money and other means so as to actively cope with the diseases, if any.
 http://english.vietnamnet.vn/social/2008/07/795197/


 

Offline rosalind dna

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Glad you mentioned the last outbreaks because every single one of them was plagued with widespread floods.

Andrew it has been a wet summer this year but no signs of FMD so
that your theories for once don't seem to corrobrate with studies.
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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Hi Rosalind dna

My prediction is that an outbreak is on the cards, not that it has happened already. We shall have to wait and see if this prediction has any merit.

Quote
Andrew it has been a wet summer this year but no signs of FMD so
that your theories for once don't seem to corrobrate with studies.
 

Offline GBSB

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My prediction is that an outbreak is on the cards,

I don’t think that is in the card.

You have presented strong point about unusually wheat weather along with widespread of floods in UK and the Foot and Mouth Disease Outbreaks


not that it has happened already.

According to your statement it already has happened (1967, 2001 and 2007)
Quote
last outbreaks because every single one of them was plagued with widespread floods.


We shall have to wait and see if this prediction has any merit.

I don’t think that the outbreak of foot and mouth disease will happen this year because this summer is wheat above average but is les wheat than last summer. The last summer it was a widespread of floods. This year we didn’t have widespread of floods, at least not yet.
 

Offline rosalind dna

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Hi Rosalind dna

My prediction is that an outbreak is on the cards, not that it has happened already. We shall have to wait and see if this prediction has any merit.

Quote
Andrew it has been a wet summer this year but no signs of FMD so
that your theories for once don't seem to corrobrate with studies.

Andrew I think that if that's so then the weather had better warm up a bit
which I doubt that is a possibility this year.

« Last Edit: 25/08/2008 20:59:27 by rosalind dna »
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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GSBG
Humidity is the important factor here not how wet the soil is. These animals require sunlight like the rest of us in order to flourish. Typically British weather often lacks sunlight. But this year we appear to be experiencing some unusual summer weather. Hopefully the winter may bring some dryer weather.

Even in desert conditions Excessive Irrigation often provides a river valley with very high humidity, This is often followed by an increase in viral and bacterial pathogen outbreaks, some very serious and life threatening. In addition Foot and mouth disease is also found in these artificially high humid environments.

In the UK we experience a fair amount of rainfall compared to many other countries. Our winters often bring with them the floods you mention. The ground water levels are already high. Ireland for example has experienced floods already so has Wales and Leicester.

There appears to be an uneven distribution of rainfall lately around the globe, with some areas experiencing severe drought yet other areas experiencing widespread floods. Africa has been experiencing some unusually high rainfalls in areas and this has followed with the appearance of foot and mouth disease and other viral outbreaks.

The First World War gives us another example of influenza pandemic killing millions of soldiers and civilians and crossing from country to country with little to no hope of containing it. This time was also the time of some unusually wet weather with soldiers suffering from trench foot due to the swamplike conditions.

In the Late Tudor Period the sweating sickness killed millions also. The Historic recording for it easing was a tempest that swept away the unusually foul air. Meaning High Humidity.



My prediction is that an outbreak is on the cards,

I don’t think that is in the card.

You have presented strong point about unusually wheat weather along with widespread of floods in UK and the Foot and Mouth Disease Outbreaks


not that it has happened already.

According to your statement it already has happened (1967, 2001 and 2007)
Quote
last outbreaks because every single one of them was plagued with widespread floods.


We shall have to wait and see if this prediction has any merit.

I don’t think that the outbreak of foot and mouth disease will happen this year because this summer is wheat above average but is les wheat than last summer. The last summer it was a widespread of floods. This year we didn’t have widespread of floods, at least not yet.
 

Offline Bored chemist

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Two points.
We get a lot of wet Winters and very few outbreaks. So when you write "Glad you mentioned the last outbreaks because every single one of them was plagued with widespread floods." you need to explain why lots of other outbreaks didn't happen.

Places like Vietnam etc which you keep citing have endemic FMD. The UK doesn't.
What the virus does in bad weather  is one thing. What bad weather does in the absense of the virus is another.

Do you not understand that
1 You need the virus to get FMD.
2 The UK doesn't generally have that virus?
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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BC

You argue that the wild animals in Africa are responsible for maintaining the virus so that it can be spread back to livestock. Can I ask you why the wild dear and wild boar can't also be doing the same in the UK?
 

Offline GBSB

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Andrew,
Every sentence of your reply is worth discussion. But for now I like to concentrate on the foot and mouth disease outbreak in UK. I think that it can be discovered important puzzle that will enable further discovery.
First of all I am not sure that humidity is the main factor because in Florida is far more humidity than in UK. However I don’t exclude possibility that you are right. To agree or to disagree about that point I need more information.

Second; I don’t think that lack of sun is a factor that contributing to outbreak of foot and mouth disease. On the other side I don’t exclude possibility that you are right on this point.

For now I am interesting to know what the all three outbreak (1967, 2001 and 2007) have in common.

According to your posts, every outbreak of FMD has happened immediately after widespread of flooding.

Widespread flooding isn’t always followed wit FDM outbreak (is rarely followed wit outbreak of FMD).

FMD never happened without widespread of flooding.

This is how I have understood. To avoid misunderstanding on the beginning of discussion, please correct me if I am wrong.

Luka


GSBG
Humidity is the important factor here not how wet the soil is. These animals require sunlight like the rest of us in order to flourish. Typically British weather often lacks sunlight. But this year we appear to be experiencing some unusual summer weather. Hopefully the winter may bring some dryer weather.

Even in desert conditions Excessive Irrigation often provides a river valley with very high humidity, This is often followed by an increase in viral and bacterial pathogen outbreaks, some very serious and life threatening. In addition Foot and mouth disease is also found in these artificially high humid environments.

In the UK we experience a fair amount of rainfall compared to many other countries. Our winters often bring with them the floods you mention. The ground water levels are already high. Ireland for example has experienced floods already so has Wales and Leicester.

There appears to be an uneven distribution of rainfall lately around the globe, with some areas experiencing severe drought yet other areas experiencing widespread floods. Africa has been experiencing some unusually high rainfalls in areas and this has followed with the appearance of foot and mouth disease and other viral outbreaks.

The First World War gives us another example of influenza pandemic killing millions of soldiers and civilians and crossing from country to country with little to no hope of containing it. This time was also the time of some unusually wet weather with soldiers suffering from trench foot due to the swamplike conditions.

In the Late Tudor Period the sweating sickness killed millions also. The Historic recording for it easing was a tempest that swept away the unusually foul air. Meaning High Humidity.


 

Offline Bored chemist

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BC

You argue that the wild animals in Africa are responsible for maintaining the virus so that it can be spread back to livestock. Can I ask you why the wild dear and wild boar can't also be doing the same in the UK?

Liar.
I never said that.
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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The word endemic also implies that the virus is maintained in the wild population of animals. Sorry if this was taken out of context.

However calling me a liar over something as minor as a misunderstanding tells people a lot more about you BC than it does about me.

I Bet you wouldnt say this to my face!
« Last Edit: 28/08/2008 07:54:40 by Andrew K Fletcher »
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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IMPORTANT PLEASE READ THIS!
FOOT & MOUTH IS LINKED IRREFUTABLY TO THE WEATHER!

HOW MANY MORE OUTBREAKS OF FOOT AND MOUTH WILL IT TAKE?
Started: 04/04/01 Date:29/04/01
NOTE:
Pages 9-11 contain an astonishing amount of evidence, which supports this paper. Relevant Data relating to the impact of meteorological conditions are extracted from two reports from The Committee of Inquiry on Foot-and-Mouth Disease 1967/1968 Epidemic. Part 1 and Part 2. Received from HM Stationary Office on the 24th April 2001 20 days after I began writing this paper.
Foot and Mouth Disease
Important Reference: "Weather', June, 1969 "Effects of wind and precipitation on the spread of Foot-and-mouth disease. PB Wright, Meteorological Office, Bracknell. pp204-213 (Page 8 independent study results)
Recent News broadcasts are finally focusing on changes in the weather. Unfortunately, misguided information is leading the media and the public to believe that it is the sunlight and UV light that is assisting the recent decline in outbreaks. This is clearly not the case and as you read through this report you will find an overwhelming amount of evidence which points to humidity rain and wind as the major components for the spread of foot and mouth disease.
The survival Time of the virus, once airborne, is determined chiefly by the humidity; below 60% relative humidity the virus soon becomes inactivated (Barlow,1972, Donaldson 1972), but in moister air the survival time is measured in days. Despite some early speculations that the virus is susceptible to sunlight, the evidence suggests that any such effect is extremely small (Druet and May 1969). The effect of temperature on the virus has not been examined, but studies with other viruses suggest that it is secondary to that of relative humidity (Amers 1969). (TEXT and Ref's by R.M.Blackall and J.Gloster Meteorological Office, Bracknall 1981)
Once gravity is accepted as the primary cause of circulation, (experimental evidence is irrefutable), it becomes clear to understand why foot and mouth disease affects the flesh around the hooves of grazing animals. It is not a coincidence that hooves, tusks and even finger and toenails occur where they do. They are merely disposal sites for heavy substances, which arrive, where they do because of gravity! It is no coincidence that we, the most vertical of all species, are the most successful! Gravity is evolution!
The specific gravity of urine for instance was used to determine whether gravity driven circulation could be taking place in humans and animals, In a similar process. For example respiration causes water to evaporate from the lungs and respiratory tract. Fluids remaining in the body contain minerals and must therefore be concentrated by the loss of mineral free water (evaporation). Gravity causes the heavy solution to be drawn back through the lining of the lungs and respiratory tract and down through the vessels in the body, carrying dissolved oxygen with it. Concentrated solutions arrive at the bladder via the kidneys where they are excreted in the urine. However the kidneys are not 100% efficient and some minerals arrive in the lowest anatomical extremities, solidifying as finger and toenails or horses hooves etc. Clippings of which sink when dropped into water.
RESULTS:
5 degree to the horizontal head down tilt over one week decreased the specific gravity of urine to a near zero reading.
5 degree to the horizontal head up tilt over one week significantly increased the specific gravity of urine when compared to horizontal bedrest.
Conclusion:
Gravity does indeed play an important roll in renal function! Toxins leave the body more efficiently when the human body is correctly aligned with the direction of gravity.
The physiology of pig is very close to humans. So close in fact that pig is now used to cultivate replacement organs for humans. (Heart valve replacement, one example). One could deduce that many of today’s illnesses affecting us could also be affecting pig and visa-versa. In fact almost all of the drugs used in veterinary practice today have a human equivalent which in many cases is identical to those prescribed to animals in all but the name of the drug.
(See Pages 5 &6 Health news)
It is also worth remembering that many of these drugs have been tested on animals before entering the £ multi-billion consumer marketplaces, which currently satisfies the medical and scientific industries.
Towards the end of the year 2000, while driving past a pig farm on three occasions, I noticed that the animals were walking around ankle deep in water, mud, urine and excrement. Due undoubtedly to the excessive rainfall Britain was experiencing at the time and I remember thinking to myself that these unfortunate animals were exposed to environmental factors that could not be healthy to say the least.
If scientists were correct about the physiological similarities between pigs and humans, then these pigs were in real trouble due to the appalling weather conditions they were exposed to.
ANALOGY
Take a thousand people, strip them naked and leave them to face the same elements and water logged fields we have seen here in Britain for six months and see how many of us survive. Of course this would be considered inhumane and could never happen to humans, but it is happening!- all the time to pigs and other farm animals?
Remember that long soak in the bath or spending too long at the swimming baths. Toes feet and fingers that looked like they belonged to someone much older, all wrinkled and horrible. Soldiers on manoeuvres in tropical regions face foot rot due to the wet and humid conditions. Jungle fever, leprosy, typhoid and many other diseases abound in such environments. Or do they? Could it be that the adverse environment reduces our resistance to many of these illnesses? Wet weather certainly affects our health and is bore out by the sudden increase in deaths among the elderly every Autumn and Winter. Sudden Infant and adult deaths occur more frequently and influenza outbreaks, which have wiped out many thousands of people, are well documented. Aching arthritic joints, bronchitis, pleurisy, pneumonia, seasonal affective disorder, to mention a few, add more problems to our already over-stretched National health services. Yet we do at least live in relatively comfortable homes when compared to the pig, sheep or cow! Every time there is a serious flood in the developing world, where people have less adequate accommodation, cholera outbreaks become a real problem! Rotting bodies and the carcasses of animals poison the water.
However there are a number of more unfortunate people who live on the streets all over the world, including Britain. It is within this underclass of the world’s poor people that serious illnesses abound, like tuberculosis. Surely this must cement in place the fact that we, like the farm animals, can’t survive the harsh elements that the weather places upon us unless we find a clean, warm and dry shelter!
In the late Tudor Period, British history tells the story of the Sweating Sickness, which killed off many tens of thousands of people. Reference was made and documented as to the unusually high humidity affecting Britain and Europe alike. Eventually, A tempest (storm) swept away the illness and with it went the humidity. Fortunately, living conditions for most have improved since the Tudor period.
The weather in the UK in the years 2000-2001 has been the wettest on record, many homes have been flooded time and time again. Yet little if any time has been devoted to connecting the foot and mouth outbreak this year to the environmental factors even though there is documented evidence which supports the fact that humidity prolongs the life of pathogenic infectious agents. (Page7: How is the virus destroyed?)
Sudden Infant Deaths
Leslie Monroe conducted a statistical analysis of incidence of sudden infant deaths (SIDS) His work now forms part of the statistics collection shown on Open University Programmes. Leslie J. A. Monro (Swindon) showed beyond any shadow of a doubt, that living in low lying river valley areas, which suffered Winter Waterlogged soils had a much greater incidence of SIDS, up to 46% above the National average. I have spoken with Mr Monro on several occasions and challenge anyone to find fault with his findings. Universities have--and failed to find anything to the contrary! I conducted my own comparisons based on monthly rainfall plotted in a graph against monthly occurrences of SIDS from 1985 to 1992. The graph shows a double mirror image. Not only do the peaks and troughs match convincingly, but also the general downward drift of rainfall from 1985 to 1992, leading to a drought in the winter of 1992 was followed by an almost identical decline in SIDS. Could it be the humidity/damp in these areas that increases the incidence of SIDS?
Yet in 1997 in the months before and during the last outbreak of foot and mouth disease, the rainfall in Britain was again excessively wet and prolonged. Veterinary surgeon Hugh Peplow of Munnings Mitchell & Peplow remembers the appalling weather conditions of 1967.
Notable Features of the Weather (Monthly weather report . MET Office) volume: 84 No: 13 Date 21st August 1973. Summary for the year 1967
1967 was a rather wet year. May was an exceptionally wet month. Rainfall being over three times the national average over large areas of Northern England. Over the country as a whole it was the wettest May since 1773. The 14th & 15th were the wettest days and noteworthy falls in many parts of the country included one of 22mm in 15 minutes at Wollerton Park, Norfolk on the 14th. Heavy storms led to widespread flooding in Lancashire between the 8th and 10th of August; at Hornby 75 mm of rain was recorded in 15 minutes
July: The first 10 days were cool with weather mainly dry in the south-east, but with occasional rain in the north and west. The 13th marked the beginning of 10 days of thundery weather, thunderstorms were widespread on the 14th &15th
From the 24th a number of rain-belts spread south-eastwards over the country. The 27th & 29th were wet in all districts.
August: Cool and unsettled weather during first week. south-east mainly dry. Thundery outbreaks from the 8th until the 11th ended violently and with wide spread flooding, especially in Lancashire, where 75 mm of rain fell in 3 hours. North-westerly winds brought cooler weather to most districts on the 12th, but from the 14th to the 18th there was a good deal of rain. The 19th to 28th was a generally warm dry period, although in some places remained cool because overnight fog was slow to clear. The last three days were unsettled although south-east was mainly dry.
September
The first 5 days were generally unsettled, with frequent often severe gales. Prolonged rain, heavy at times, was broken by showery weather during the afternoon of the 2nd and during the 4th Tiree recorded 75mm of rain during this period. 10th & 11th were generally dull and wet days, other days being fine. 15th & 16th dull but mainly dry. 17th an area of rain moved across most districts and another during the night of 18th/19th , scattered thunderstorms on the 20th and heavy showers on the 21st were followed by a week of warmer weather and southerly winds, however rain was widespread on the 24th, 25th and 29th. 30th sunny with scattered showers.
October (Time of the 1967 outbreak of FMD) (Source of local information for Oct: Vol 84 same report)
First 3 days were cool and stormy with widespread rain and gales, 4th bright and showery, but further rain reached south-west England from the Atlantic on the 5th. Mild south-westerly winds occurred on the 6th spreading throughout the country.
A wet period followed, heavy rain on the 8th 9th & 10th led to widespread floods in the Lake District, south-west Scotland and north Wales. North Wales suffered considerable flood damage on the 10th. Great Langdale (Westmoorland) recorded 146mm in 24 hours. 11th Cooler westerly winds brought further rain and temperatures fell too near normal. 12th & 13th were sunny and dry for most of the country. A wet day on the 14th and Northerly winds brought a sharp drop in temperatures on the 15th. The 16th was the stormiest day of the month and heavy rains led to renewed widespread flooding in Wales and the Midlands. The days rainfall exceeded 50 mm in many parts of the Midlands, 85mm fell at Lwynon (Brecknock). The second half of the month was changeable and rather wet. Gales were severe in places and continued on the 17th from a north-westerly direction behind the depression. Thundery showers spread to all districts in this cold north-westerly air-stream and snow was reported as far south as Ringway (Manchester). Prolonged sunny periods on the 18th & 22nd Temperatures were above average for the week following the 18th but the last five days of the month were rather cool with widespread rain on the 19th 20th 27th and rain reached all districts late in the day on the 30th 31st widespread rain.
November
The unsettled, stormy and cold weather continued for most of the first week. Rain was widespread and heavy locally on most days of this week. Rain reached northern districts on the 24th and spread southwards over the country bringing to an end 11 dry days at many places over Southern England. 27th- unsettled with rain alternating with brighter showery periods.
December
Overnight fog was slow to disperse in the Midlands during the first two days. Rain spread South Eastwards across the country on the night of the 2nd. 3rd mainly fine. North westerly winds reached gale force during the next two days, and rain moving south. Followed by 5 days of cold Northerly winds which brought snow to all districts. Rain continued on the 11th moving to the south-east of England for most of the 12th. Widespread rain on the 15th followed by 4 days of cold weather with snow showers and night frosts. 21st to 27th saw milder wet weather, but the 28th saw cold northerly winds with some snow until the end of the month.
« Last Edit: 28/08/2008 20:40:45 by Andrew K Fletcher »
 

Offline Andrew K Fletcher

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ATTEMPTS TO BE HEARD
I have contacted the Ministry Of Agriculture Fisheries and Food (MAFF) and the National Farmers Union (NFU), Institute for Animal Health, Pirbright Laboratory, Woking, Surrey GU24 ONF, U.K. Reply: "not now, this is the wrong time to consider your work in this field, come back when all of this has blown over. However, my wife heard on the TV days after I had spoken to a veterinary surgeon at MAFF that the outbreak of foot and mouth will subside when the weather changes for the better! But what if it changes for the worse? Furthermore, I have sent a copy of this paper to all concerned with foot and mouth disease.
Why the mass slaughter of livestock and disruptions to the farming and tourist industries if the problem will resolve itself when the rain stops? (page7 Persistence of Virus Donaldson 1987).
Indeed why was the vaccine never used? I believe that the vaccine for foot and mouth disease is only partially successful and officials know this, as is the case with any vaccine for influenza in humans, when one bug is defeated another variant will take its place.
http://www.man.ac.uk/Science_Engineering/CHSTM/news/fmd-faq.htm#1967
Materials and comments by Abigail Woods MA MSc VetMB MRCVS
Is slaughter really necessary?
On animal and human health grounds, almost certainly not. 95% of animals will recover within 2 weeks with little or no treatment. There is virtually no risk to human health. Abigail Woods points to the economics of farming and the fact that animal’s once infected fail to thrive and gain weight. Could the adverse environmental conditions be responsible for animals failing to thrive?
PROPOSEL put to MAFF and the NFU
Confine a number of affected animals in a secure, clean containment room with dry bedding food and water and room for exercise, use a dehumidifier to remove the moisture from the air to create a warm dry environment. Study the effects of the improved environmental conditions on the affected animals for five weeks and see if they recover!
Having put my proposal to MAFF, which in my opinion would be simple and cost effective to conduct. No further action looks imminent, instead the mass slaughter continues, as if there is some other hidden agenda behind it, perhaps to make sure that the future stocks on our farms are free from BSE? Or simply to make use of the surplus meat and dairy produce, which was given away to people in Britain a few years ago? (EEC. meat and butter mountains) caused by intensive farming and the resulting overproduction!
This model (mentioned above) has already been proven, albeit unwittingly by scientists who tried to reproduce the same prolific viral traits as observed in farming conditions and failed because they had a clean dry environment under laboratory conditions, which is exactly what I am saying. Remove the environmental conditions faced by these animals and they will become healthy animals; furthermore, the spread from one animal to another in the contained dry experimental environment will decrease and stability will be observed! Pages 10&11 Report of the Inquiry on Foot-and-Mouth Disease 1968 Paragraphs 223,224,225
One official at least said that he thought my arguments had some validity, fitting with many of the known parameters in foot and mouth disease. He said that it is thought that the summer months will eliminate the disease and this is thought to be because of the rays from the sun and that it should be investigated further. I pointed out that my proposal did not involve the sun and that if successful would prove this point.
Conclusion
Foot and Mouth Disease is here to stay as are many illnesses affecting humans and animals alike. It is only the changes in environmental conditions, which reduce resistance’s to infectious agents that mislead scientists into believing that someone must have introduced the disease from some far off place. It is easier to pass the book and look for a safe scapegoat, rather than admit that today’s knowledge about the circulation of fluids within the body of humans and animals is incorrect! After all, if the disease originated in some far-flung place, something must have triggered it in the first place! The recent floods in Africa for example?
Two suicides already reported in the farming community on Sky TV News today 04 April 2001, how many more lives and livelihoods will be trashed before this ridiculous farce ends?
Foot and mouth should be seen as a warning of pending danger.
Foot and mouth should be seen as a warning of pending danger from infectious diseases which can spread to humans from animals. One consideration should be the outbreak of Nipha Disease in Malaysia.
'Emergency report' by the Director General of the Malaysian Veterinary Services, Dr Mohd Nordin Mohd Nor, to the OIE, (published in their weekly DISEASE INFORMATION of 28 May 1999, Vol. 12 - No. 20.)
By mid-December 1998, the disease had spread to Sikamat, about 60 km south of Kuala Lumpur, through movement of infected pigs. Seven of the 20 workers developed the disease and five died in January 1999.
By March 1999 the disease had spread to the major pig producing area of Bukit Pelandok in the State of Negeri Sembilan
The disease spread to more farms and, from 1 March to 10 May 1999, a total of 224 suspected cases of viral encephalitis occurred in Negeri Sembilan with 80 fatalities. Out of a total of 258 persons suspected of being infected with the Nipah virus, 100 have died.
In a previously infected farm, more than 95% of sows had Nipah virus antibodies. More than 90% of the piglets had antibodies assumed to be maternal antibodies. Antibody prevalence across all ages is currently being
studied in an infected farm. END OF COPIED REPORT
This is the first comprehensive report we have seen and may be the first comprehensive report. Japanese encephalitis is no longer being reported as the etiologic agent of Nipah disease and other steps forward obviously have
been taken. The overall mortality rate in humans is 38.8%. Many questions remain---
Source: ProMED-mail Michele Gale-Sinex. Communications manager
Center for Integrated Ag Systems, UW-Madison http://www.wisc.edu/

Health news
Foot-and-mouth disease http://www.bupa.co.uk/health_news/270201foot.html
Written by BUPA's medical team - 27 February 2001
The outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in pigs and cows has raised the question of whether the disease can be transmitted to humans. The Public Health Laboratory Service (PHLS) is the national authority responsible for detecting, diagnosing, and monitoring infectious diseases in humans. Here we summarise its advice on foot-and-mouth disease. For further details, visit the PHLS home page, and go to 'news and events'.
·   Documented cases of human infection with the disease are very rare. This is despite farmers having very regular contact with animals, and regular foot-and-mouth epidemics in other parts of the world. The last reported human case in the UK was 1967.
·   This means that the risk of human infection is very small. And when infection has occurred, the symptoms are mild and clear up without the need for special treatment. There has been no recorded case of human-to-human transmission.
·   The current priority is to prevent more animals from becoming infected. Animals are being destroyed to contain the spread of the disease. More information on the outbreak and foot and mouth disease in animals can be obtained on the Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Food (MAFF) web-site.
·   Don't confuse foot-and-mouth disease with the human disease called "hand, foot-and-mouth" disease. This is a completely different, and usually mild, viral infection that mostly affects children. The virus responsible is an enterovirus called coxsackie A virus.
Alternative names: Coxsackievirus infection Symptoms: fever, sore throat, blisters or ulcers in the throat and mouth headache a rash with blisters on hands, feet and diaper area and appetite loss. (picture)- http://tray.dermatology.uiowa.edu/Coxsack01.htm

 
http://www.maff.gov.uk/inf/newsrel/2001/010323a.htm
FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE 2001 - EPIDEMIOLOGICAL FORECASTS
NOTE FOR TECHNICAL BRIEFING, 23 March 2001
The outlook for FMD in Great Britain 2001 is for a very large epidemic. It will grow fast in the next few weeks and continue for many months. The number of cases will rise steeply with rapid expansion in the existing areas in spite of current controls. Estimates vary from 70 cases a day over the next two weeks to over 4000 cases by June 2001.
The Ministry of Agriculture and the Food Standards Agency held a joint meeting on 21 March to receive urgent advice from independent expert epidemiologists. Jim Scudamore (Chief Veterinary Officer), Sir John Krebs (Chairman FSA) and Professor David King (Chief Scientific Adviser) heard reports from Neil Ferguson and colleagues (Imperial College) Mark Woolhouse (University of Edinburgh) and opinions from experts at the Institute of Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency. The models and analysis use data recorded by MAFF up to 19 March 2001. A brief summary of the available findings is attached; Imperial plan to publish shortly.
The effect of controls on animal movement from 23 February was noted, but all the experts advised the need for further drastic action to bring disease under control. Otherwise FMD will become established in Britain.
Speedier slaughter of infected animals will help to reduce transmission. But this needs to be accompanied by immediate slaughter of all susceptible species around infected farms otherwise the final number of cases will be very high. Depending on the extent of these interventions, the combined strategy could reduce the epidemic substantially.
The experts said the last major epidemic in UK 1967/8 was quite different. In 2001 more of the country is affected, sheep are an important reservoir of infection, the scale of dissemination by animal movement was enormous early on. In addition the size of flocks and herds means the scale of operations is very big.
t is stressed that these are preliminary results, which do not represent a final view from the modelling teams, or from the Government.
The external teams have not yet had the opportunity to model the impact of FMD's geographic distribution, or of the characteristics of different species.
 

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