Infectious Bursal Disease Virus

Authored by: Maja Velhner , Dejan Vidanovic , Ivan Dobrosavljevic

Molecular Detection of Animal Viral Pathogens

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

Print ISBN: 9781498700368
eBook ISBN: 9781498700375
Adobe ISBN:


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The worldwide spread of infectious bursal disease virus (IBDV) in poultry has been well documented over the past decades [1]. The virus usually affects young chickens, causing moderate to high mortality rate, loss of weight, poor flock performances, and immunodeficiency. In the best-case scenario, birds that recovered from infection may show good productivity later on. However, secondary viral or bacterial disease may hamper the recovery process and contribute to higher mortality rate than IBDV itself. Good management practice and vaccination is currently the most effective way to mitigate against infectious bursal disease (IBD). In the early 1970s, field strains usually caused immunosuppression in affected flocks. Many years of work by poultry specialists highlighted the value of vaccination, given the dramatic changes in pathogenic potential of the IBDV. An approach to vaccinate breeder flocks with inactivated vaccines (after priming with live attenuated viruses), to obtain high levels of maternally derived antibodies in progeny, has held promises for years. Due to the emergence of a new bio-type of very virulent IBDV (vvIBDV), attempts have been made to protect broiler and layer flocks as soon as possible by introducing intermediate and intermediate plus vaccines. The concept of subcutaneous injection with immunocomplex vaccines [2] and in ovo vaccination applying automatic injectors is increasingly accepted for early protection purposes [3,4]. Thus, vaccination strategies have essentially evolved around the selection of an appropriate vaccine and the timing of vaccination [5,6]. Paying necessary attention to the epizootiology of IBDV is also important to prevent and combat the infection.

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