Avian Encephalomyelitis Virus

Authored by: Mazhar I. Khan , Zhixun Xie , Theodore Girshick , Zhiqin Xie

Molecular Detection of Animal Viral Pathogens

Print publication date:  August  2016
Online publication date:  May  2016

Print ISBN: 9781498700368
eBook ISBN: 9781498700375
Adobe ISBN:

10.1201/b19719-ch6

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Abstract

Avian encephalomyelitis virus (AEV) causes central nervous system (CNS) signs (including ataxia, incoordination, paralysis, and rapid tremors) with high morbidity and some mortality in young chicks [1-7]. AEV was first described in 1932 in 2-week-old chicks showing tremors [5]. However, in adult laying birds, AEV infection causes no neurologic signs, apart from a slight reduction in egg production [3,7]. Outbreaks of AEV infections were observed in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire, which led to the naming of avian encephalomyelitis (AE) as "New England disease." Since then, AE has been identified in many parts of the world [7]. AEV has a limited host range; chickens, pheasant, Coturnix quail, and turkeys have been shown to be infected [7-9]. AEV is transmitted vertically to the progeny, but infection with AEV by the fecal-oral route also occurs [3,10-12]. In the mid-1950s, AE was successfully controlled by immunization [13].

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