Publications by authors named "Bamouh Z"

20 Publications

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Draft Genome Sequence of Pasteurella multocida Serotype A Strain MOR19, Isolated in Morocco.

Microbiol Resour Announc 2021 Oct 14;10(41):e0086721. Epub 2021 Oct 14.

Research and Development Department, Multi-Chemical Industry, Mohammedia, Morocco.

Pasteurella multocida causes pneumonia in large ruminants. In this study, we determined the genome sequence of the capsular serotype A Pasteurella multocida strain MOR19, isolated from a calf that died from acute pneumonia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/MRA.00867-21DOI Listing
October 2021

Biological and molecular characterization of a sheep pathogen isolate of and leukotoxin production kinetics.

Vet World 2021 Aug 7;14(8):2031-2040. Epub 2021 Aug 7.

Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Contagious Diseases, Institute of Agronomy and Veterinary Medicine Hassan II, Rabat, Morocco.

Background And Aim: (Mha) is a common agent of pneumonia in ruminants globally, causing economic losses by morbidity, mortality, and treatment costs. Infection by Mha is often associated with or promoted by respiratory viral pathogens and environmental conditions. Infections due to Mha have rarely been described in small ruminants. This study reports the biological and molecular characteristics of a new Moroccan Mha isolate from small ruminants presenting typical respiratory symptoms. We also studied the cultural parameters, growth kinetics, and Lkt excretion of the isolate and its pathogenicity on laboratory animals and small ruminants.

Materials And Methods: Suspected pasteurellosis cases in sheep and goat flocks in Morocco were investigated. A local strain of Mha was isolated and identified using biochemical and molecular methods. Polymerase chain reaction-targeting specific genes were used for serotyping and phylogenetic analyses; further, leukotoxin production, cytotoxicity, and pathogenicity of the isolate in mice, goats, and sheep were investigated.

Results: Phylogeny analysis revealed 98.76% sequence identity with the USA isolate of 2013; the strain growth with a cycle of 9-10 h with leukotoxin secretion was detected by NETosis and quantified by cytotoxicity and mortality of mice. Goat and sheep infections cause hyperthermia, with characteristic postmortem lesions in the trachea and lung.

Conclusion: A local isolate of Mha from sheep that died of pneumonia was characterized for the 1 time in North Africa using biological and molecular methods. Although growth on appropriate culture media is accompanied by intense leukotoxin secretion, experimental infections of sheep and goats cause hyperthermia and typical lesions of pneumonia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.14202/vetworld.2021.2031-2040DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8448628PMC
August 2021

Safety and efficacy of a Bluetongue inactivated vaccine (serotypes 1 and 4) in sheep.

Vet Microbiol 2021 Oct 20;261:109212. Epub 2021 Aug 20.

Research and Development, MCI Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z. I., Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P: 278, Mohammedia 28810, Morocco. Electronic address:

A new inactivated vaccine against Bluetongue virus (BTV) serotypes 1 and 4, was developed from field isolates. Safety and efficacy of the vaccine were evaluated in sheep by serological monitoring and virus nucleic acid detection after experimental infection of vaccinated animals. Seroconversion was observed in vaccinated animals at day 14 post vaccination (pv) with neutralizing antibody titer of 1.9 and 1.8 for serotypes 1 and 4, respectively. The titer increase significantly after the booster reaching 2.7 and persist one year >1.5 for both serotypes. After challenge with virulent isolates, vireamia was recorded in control animals, as evident by q-PCR with threshold cycles (Ct) ranging from 24 to 31 and peaked at day 10 post challenge, while no vireamia was detected in vaccinated animals. Vaccinated sheep were fully protected against the disease and infection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vetmic.2021.109212DOI Listing
October 2021

Long term immunity against Peste Des Petits Ruminants mediated by a recombinant Newcastle disease virus vaccine.

Vet Microbiol 2021 Oct 5;261:109201. Epub 2021 Aug 5.

Research and Development, MCI Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z. I., Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P: 278, Mohammedia, 28810, Morocco. Electronic address:

Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR) is a highly contagious and often fatal disease of sheep and goats. Conventional live vaccines have been successfully used in endemic countries however, there are not completely safe and not allowing differentiation between vaccinated and infected animals (DIVA). In this study, a recombinant Newcastle disease virus (NDV) expressing the hemagglutinin of PPRV (NDV-PPRVH) was evaluated on small ruminants by serology response in sheep and goats, experimental infection in goats and immunity duration in sheep. The NDV-PPRVH vaccine injected twice at 28 days' interval, provided full protection against challenge with a virulent PPR strain in the most sensitive species and induced significant neutralizing antibodies. Immunological response in goats was slightly higher than sheep and the vaccine injected at 10 50 % egg infective dose/mL allowed anti-PPRV antibodies that lasted at least 12 months as shown by antibody response monitoring in sheep. The NDV vector presented a limited replication in the host and vaccinated animals remained negative when tested by cELISA based on PPRV nucleoprotein allowing DIVA. This recombinant vaccine appears to be a promising candidate in a free at risk countries and may be an important component of the global strategy for PPR eradication.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vetmic.2021.109201DOI Listing
October 2021

Draft Genome Sequence of the Capripoxvirus Vaccine Strain KSGP 0240, Reisolated from Cattle.

Microbiol Resour Announc 2021 Jul 29;10(30):e0044021. Epub 2021 Jul 29.

Research and Development Department, Multi-Chemical Industry, Mohammedia, Morocco.

Control of lumpy skin disease in cattle is based on vaccination with live attenuated vaccines. The Kenyan strain KSGP 0240 is commonly used to vaccinate ruminants against capripox infections, but the conferred protection is still controversial. In this study, we report the draft genome sequence of the vaccine strain KSGP 0240, reisolated from cattle.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/MRA.00440-21DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8320456PMC
July 2021

Investigation of Post Vaccination Reactions of Two Live Attenuated Vaccines against Lumpy Skin Disease of Cattle.

Vaccines (Basel) 2021 Jun 8;9(6). Epub 2021 Jun 8.

MCI Santé Animale, Mohammedia 28810, Morocco.

Lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV) causes an economically important disease in cattle. The only method for successful control is early diagnosis and efficient vaccination. Adverse effects of vaccination such as local inflammation at the injection site and localized or generalized skin lesions in some vaccinated animals have been reported with live vaccines. The aim of this work was to compare the safety of two lumpy skin disease (LSD) vaccine strains, Kenyan (Kn) Sheep and Goat Pox (KSGP O-240) and LSDV Neethling (Nt) strain, and to determine the etiology of the post-vaccination (pv) reactions observed in cattle. Experimental cattle were vaccinated under controlled conditions with Nt- and KSGP O-240-based vaccines, using two different doses, and animals were observed for 3 months for any adverse reactions. Three out of 45 cattle vaccinated with LSDV Nt strain (6.7%) and three out of 24 cattle vaccinated with Kn strain (12.5%) presented LSD-like skin nodules, providing evidence that the post-vaccination lesions may not be strain-dependent. Lesions appeared 1-3 weeks after vaccination and were localized in the neck or covering the whole body. Animals recovered after 3 weeks. There is a positive correlation between the vaccine dose and the appearance of skin lesions in vaccinated animals; at the 105 dose, 12% of the animals reacted versus 3.7% at the 104 dose. Both strains induced solid immunity when protection was measured by neutralizing antibody seroconversion.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/vaccines9060621DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8226854PMC
June 2021

In-vitro and in-vivo study of the interference between Rift Valley fever virus (clone 13) and Sheeppox/Limpy Skin disease viruses.

Sci Rep 2021 06 11;11(1):12395. Epub 2021 Jun 11.

R&D Virology, MCI Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z I, Sud-Ouest (ERAC), B.P. 278, 28810, Mohammedia, Morocco.

Viral interference is a common occurrence that has been reported in cell culture in many cases. In the present study, viral interference between two capripox viruses (sheeppox SPPV and lumpy skin disease virus LSDV in cattle) with Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) was investigated in vitro and in their natural hosts, sheep and cattle. A combination of SPPV/RVFV and LSDV/RVFV was used to co-infect susceptible cells and animals to detect potential competition. In-vitro interference was evaluated by estimating viral infectivity and copies of viral RNA by a qPCR during three serial passages in cell cultures, whereas in-vivo interference was assessed through antibody responses to vaccination. When lamb testis primary cells were infected with the mixture of capripox and RVFV, the replication of both SPPV and LSDV was inhibited by RVFV. In animals, SPPV/RVFV or LSDV/RVFV combinations inhibited the replication SPPV and LSDV and the antibody response following vaccination. The combined SPPV/RVFV did not protect sheep after challenging with the virulent strain of SPPV and the LSDV/RVFV did not induce interferon Gamma to LSDV, while immunological response to RVFV remain unaffected. Our goal was to assess this interference response to RVFV/capripoxviruses' coinfection in order to develop effective combined live-attenuated vaccines as a control strategy for RVF and SPP/LSD diseases. Our findings indicated that this approach was not suitable for developing a combined SPPV/LSDV/RVFV vaccine candidate because of interference of replication and the immune response among these viruses.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-91926-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8196192PMC
June 2021

Development of an inactivated combined vaccine for protection of cattle against lumpy skin disease and bluetongue viruses.

Vet Microbiol 2021 May 23;256:109046. Epub 2021 Mar 23.

Research and Development, MCI Santé Animale, ZI Sud-Ouest B.P: 278, Mohammedia, 28810, Morocco.

Lumpy Skin Disease (LSD) and Bluetongue (BT) are the main ruminants viral vector-borne diseases. LSD is endemic in Africa and has recently emerged in Europe and central Asia as a major threat to cattle industry. BT caused great economic damage in Europe during the last decade with a continuous spread to other countries. To control these diseases, vaccination is the only economically viable tool. For LSD, only live-attenuated vaccines (LAVs) are commercially available, whilst for BT both LAVs and inactivated vaccines are available with a limited number of serotypes. In this study, we developed an inactivated, oil adjuvanted bivalent vaccine against both diseases based on LSDV Neethling strain and BTV4. The vaccine was tested for safety and immunogenicity on cattle during a one-year period. Post-vaccination monitoring was carried out by VNT and ELISA. The vaccine was completely safe and elicited high neutralizing antibodies starting from the first week following the second injection up to one year. Furthermore, a significant correlation (R = 0.9040) was observed when comparing VNT and competitive ELISA in BTV4 serological response. Following BTV4 challenge, none of vaccinated and unvaccinated cattle were registered clinical signs, however vaccinated cattle showed full protection from viraemia. In summary, this study highlights the effectiveness of this combined vaccine as a promising solution for both LSD and BT control. It also puts an emphasis on the need for the development of other multivalent inactivated vaccines, which could be greatly beneficial for improving vaccination coverage in endemic countries and prophylaxis of vector-borne diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vetmic.2021.109046DOI Listing
May 2021

Experimental infection of indigenous North African goats with goatpox virus.

Acta Vet Scand 2021 Mar 4;63(1). Epub 2021 Mar 4.

Department of Research and Development, Multi-Chemical Industry Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z I, Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P.: 278, 28810, Mohammedia, Morocco.

Background: Goatpox is a viral disease caused by infection with goatpox virus (GTPV) of the genus Capripoxvirus, Poxviridae family. Capripoxviruses cause serious disease to livestock and contribute to huge economic losses. Goatpox and sheeppox are endemic to Africa, particularly north of the Equator, the Middle East and many parts of Asia. GTPV and sheeppox virus are considered host-specific; however, both strains can cause clinical disease in either goats or sheep with more severe disease in the homologous species and mild or sub-clinical infection in the other. Goatpox has never been reported in Morocco, Algeria or Tunisia despite the huge population of goats living in proximity with sheep in those countries. To evaluate the susceptibility and pathogenicity of indigenous North African goats to GTPV infection, we experimentally inoculated eight locally bred goats with a virulent Vietnamese isolate of GTPV. Two uninfected goats were kept as controls. Clinical examination was carried out daily and blood was sampled for virology and for investigating the antibody response. After necropsy, tissues were collected and assessed for viral DNA using real-time PCR.

Results: Following the experimental infection, all inoculated goats displayed clinical signs characteristic of goatpox including varying degrees of hyperthermia, loss of appetite, inactivity and cutaneous lesions. The infection severely affected three of the infected animals while moderate to mild disease was noticed in the remaining goats. A high antibody response was developed. High viral DNA loads were detected in skin crusts and nodules, and subcutaneous tissue at the injection site with cycle threshold (Ct) values ranging from 14.6 to 22.9, while lower viral loads were found in liver and lung (Ct = 35.7 and 35.1). The results confirmed subcutaneous tropism of the virus.

Conclusion: Clinical signs of goatpox were reproduced in indigenous North African goats and confirmed a high susceptibility of the North African goat breed to GTPV infection. A clinical scoring system is proposed that can be applied in GTPV vaccine efficacy studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13028-021-00574-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7931584PMC
March 2021

Safety and immunogenicity of the Rift Valley fever arMP-12 ΔNSm21/384 candidate vaccine in pregnant ewes.

Vaccine X 2020 Dec 29;6:100070. Epub 2020 Jul 29.

Research and Development Dept., Multi-Chemical Industry, Lot. 157, Z I, Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P.: 278, Mohammedia 28810, Morocco.

Rift Valley fever (RVF) poses a threat to human and animal health as well as economic losses due to abortion, new-born teratogenic effect and mortality. Safe and effective vaccines are critically needed to prevent the disease in humans and livestock. The objective of this study was to assess safety and immunogenicity of the Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) arMP-12DNSm21/384 attenuated vaccine in 32 pregnant ewes at different stages of pregnancy including 17 ewes vaccinated during the early stage (G1) of pregnancy (<35 days) and 15 ewes vaccinated during the last two stages (G2) of pregnancy (>35 days). Ewes were monitored for clinical observations, rectal temperature and abortions and lambs were monitored for general health and rectal temperature. Vaccinated ewes and lambs were periodically sampled for their neutralizing antibody response to RVFV vaccination. All ewes were positive for antibody two weeks post-vaccination and 79% of ewes were positive at delivery. None of the 32 ewes aborted during pregnancy and all ewes vaccinated during the G2 stages of pregnancy gave birth to healthy lambs. However, among the 17 ewes vaccinated during the G1 stage of pregnancy, 2 ewes gave birth to 2 lambs with fore limb malformations that died at 1-day of age. One ewe gave birth to 2 punny twins that died at 2 days of age. Another ewe, gave birth to one lamb with a deformed tail that died at 20 days of age. At post-mortem, tissues of dead lambs (spleen, lung, brain and long bone) were negative for RVFV by PCR assay. While the findings did not link the malformed lambs directly to infection by the vaccine virus, these results indicated that pregnant sheep should not be vaccinated with the RVFV arMP-12DNSm21/384 vaccine during the first month of gestation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jvacx.2020.100070DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7415414PMC
December 2020

Experimental evaluation of the cross-protection between Sheeppox and bovine Lumpy skin vaccines.

Sci Rep 2020 06 1;10(1):8888. Epub 2020 Jun 1.

Research and Development Virology, Multi-Chemical Industry, Lot. 157, Z I, Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P.: 278, Mohammedia, 28810, Morocco.

The Capripoxvirus genus includes three agents: Sheeppox virus, Goatpox virus and Lumpy skin disease virus. Related diseases are of economic importance and present a major constraint to animals and animal products trade in addition to mortality and morbidity. Attenuated vaccines against these diseases are available, but afforded cross-protection is controversial in each specie. In this study, groups of sheep, goats and cattle were vaccinated with Romania SPPV vaccine and challenged with corresponding virulent strains. Sheep and cattle were also vaccinated with Neethling LSDV vaccine and challenged with both virulent SPPV and LSDV strains. Animals were monitored by clinical observation, rectal temperature as well as serological response. The study showed that sheep and goats vaccinated with Romania SPPV vaccine were fully protected against challenge with virulent SPPV and GTPV strains, respectively. However, small ruminants vaccinated with LSDV Neethling vaccine showed only partial protection against challenge with virulent SPPV strain. Cattle showed also only partial protection when vaccinated with Romania SPPV and were fully protected with Neethling LSDV vaccine. This study showed that SPPV and GTPV vaccines are closely related with cross-protection, while LSDV protects only cattle against the corresponding disease, which suggests that vaccination against LSDV should be carried out with homologous strain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-65856-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7264126PMC
June 2020

Immunological responses and potency of the EG95NC recombinant sheep vaccine against cystic echinococcosis.

Parasitol Int 2020 Oct 26;78:102149. Epub 2020 May 26.

Research and Development of Recombinant Vaccine, Multi-Chemical Industry, Lot. 157, Z I, Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P.:278, 28810 Mohammedia, Morocco.

Cystic echinococcosis (CE) is a zoonotic disease caused by the cestode parasite Echinococcus granulosus. The disease has an important impact on human health as well as economic costs including the cost of treatment as well as loss of productivity for the livestock industry. In many parts of the world where the disease is endemic, sheep and other livestock play an important role in the parasite's transmission. A vaccine to protect livestock against CE can be effective in reducing transmission and economic costs of the disease. A recombinant antigen vaccine has been developed against infection with E. granulosus (EG95) which could potentially be used to reduce the level of E. granulosus transmission and decrease the incidence of human infections. Further development of the EG95 recombinant vaccine as a combined product with clostridial vaccine antigens is one potential strategy which could improve application of the hydatid vaccine by providing an indirect economic incentive to livestock owners to vaccinate against CE. In this study we investigated the efficacy of the EG95 recombinant vaccine produced in Morocco by vaccination of sheep, including a combined vaccine incorporating EG95 and clostridia antigens. Vaccination with EG95 either as a monovalent vaccine or combined with clostridia antigens, protected sheep against a challenge infection with E. granulosus eggs and induced a strong, long lasting, and specific antibody response against the EG95 antigen.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.parint.2020.102149DOI Listing
October 2020

Development and Evaluation of an Inactivated Lumpy Skin Disease Vaccine for Cattle.

Vet Microbiol 2020 Jun 18;245:108689. Epub 2020 Apr 18.

Research and development Virology, Multi-Chemical Industry, Lot. 157, ZI Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P: 278, Mohammedia 28810, Morocco.

Lumpy skin disease (LSD) of cattle is caused by a virus within Capripoxvirus genus. It leads to huge economic losses in addition to trade and animal movement limitation. Vaccination is the only economically feasible way to control this vector-borne disease. Only live attenuated vaccines have been used so far and no inactivated vaccine has been developed nor tested in cattle. In this study, we developed an inactivated oily adjuvanted vaccine based on Neethling strain and tested it on cattle. Selected criteria of appreciation were safety, antibody response by Virus Neutralization and protection through challenge. A field trial was also performed in Bulgaria. The vaccine was safe and did not cause any adverse reaction, high level of specific antibodies was obtained starting from day 7 post-vaccination and protection against virulent challenge strain that caused typical disease in control animals was total. Induced protection was similar to that obtained with live vaccine, without any adverse effect. In addition, the field study confirmed safety and efficacy of the vaccine, which did not show any adverse reaction and induced a high level of antibodies for up to one year. General prophylaxis based on inactivated vaccine could be of great benefit in endemic countries or at risk regions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vetmic.2020.108689DOI Listing
June 2020

Peste des petits ruminants pathogenesis on experimental infected goats by the Moroccan 2015 isolate.

BMC Vet Res 2019 Dec 16;15(1):452. Epub 2019 Dec 16.

Research and Development, MCI Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z. I., Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P: 278, 28810, Mohammedia, Morocco.

Background: Peste des petits ruminants (PPR) is a viral disease of major economic importance on small ruminants. Goats are usually known to be more susceptible to the disease. Infection chronology, virus circulation, and the disease early detection need to be better understood. This study evaluates the tissue tropism and pathogenesis of PPR following experimental infection of goats using a lineage IV virus, the most dominant in the world originated from Asia. PPRV infection was experimentally induced in 4 six-month-old goats by intra-nasal and intravenous route of cell virus suspension and from infectious mashed tissue. The clinical signs were observed and goats were euthanized at predetermined clinical score level for post-mortem examinations and PPRV detection by RT-PCR. Clinical signs of infection were present, pyrexia, serous-mucopurulent nasal discharges, coughing, diarrhea and asthenia, for both cell virus suspension and infectious mashed tissue. PPRV genome was highly detected in swabs and tissues with clinical signs dominated by pulmonary attack and digestive symptoms secondary.

Results: Results of this study indicates that PPRV is an invasive infection in animals that in a short period, less than 10 days, invade all vital organs. On live animals, early diagnostic may be easily done on lacrimal and rectal swabs.

Conclusion: The experimental PPRV-infection model using the cell virus suspension is suitable for vaccine evaluation as a standard model.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12917-019-2164-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6916009PMC
December 2019

Experimental infection of dromedary camels with virulent virus of Peste des Petits Ruminants.

Vet Microbiol 2019 Aug 8;235:195-198. Epub 2019 Jul 8.

Research and Development, MCI Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z. I., Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P: 278, Mohammedia, 28810, Morocco. Electronic address:

Peste des Petits Ruminants Virus (PPRV) causes a severe contagious disease of sheep and goats and has spread extensively in last years through Asia and Africa. PPRV, known to infect exclusively small ruminants, has been recently reported in camels in Iran and Sudan. Reported clinical symptoms are similar to those observed in small ruminants, fatality rate still unknown. However most of the authors reported seropositive camels without clinical signs. Camel sensitivity to PPRV is still controversial and more investigation need to be performed. In this study, we tested camel susceptibility by an experimental infection using a virulent PPRV strain belonging to lineage IV. Young dromedary camels were infected intravenously and observed one month for clinical symptoms. Viraemia and virus secretion charge in swabs were evaluated by PCR. Seroconversion was assessed by ELISA and virus neutralisation test. Infected animals did not manifest any clinical symptoms of the disease and no virus was detected in secretions. Seroconversion was observed from day 14 post infection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vetmic.2019.07.004DOI Listing
August 2019

Pathogenicity and Full Genome Sequencing of the Avian Influenza H9N2 Moroccan Isolate 2016.

Avian Dis 2019 03;63(1):24-30

Research and Development Department, Multi-Chemical Industry, Lot 157, Z I, Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B. P. 278, Mohammedia 28810, Morocco.

In Morocco in early 2016, a low pathogenic avian influenza virus serotype H9N2 caused large economic losses to the poultry industry, with specific clinical symptoms and high mortality rates on infected farms. Subsequent to the H9N2 outbreak, the causal agent was successfully isolated from chicken flocks with high morbidity and mortality rates, propagated on embryonated eggs, and fully sequenced. The phylogenetic analysis suggested that the Moroccan isolate could have derived from the Middle East isolate A/chicken/Dubai/D2506.A/2015. This study was designed to assess the pathogenicity of the Moroccan isolate H9N2 in experimentally infected broiler and specific-pathogen-free (SPF) chickens. At 22 days of age, one broiler and two SPF chicken groups were inoculated by dropping 0.2 ml of the H9N2 isolate (10 EID/ml) in both nostrils and eyes. Clinically inoculated chickens with H9N2 displayed mild lesions, low mortality rates, and an absence of clinical signs. The H9N2 virus was more pathogenic in broiler chickens and produced more severe tissue lesions compared to SPF chickens. The viral shedding was detected up to 6 days postinoculation (pi) in oropharyngeal and cloacal swabs in infected birds with a maximum shedding in the oropharynges of the broiler group. All experimental chickens seroconverted and registered high hemagglutination inhibition titers as early as day 7 pi. The present study indicates that the H9N2 virus isolated from a natural outbreak was of low pathogenicity under experimental conditions. However, under field conditions infection with other pathogens might have aggravated the disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1637/11941-080418-Reg.1DOI Listing
March 2019

Safety and immunogenicity of a live attenuated Rift Valley Fever recombinant arMP-12ΔNSm21/384 vaccine candidate for sheep, goats and calves.

Vaccine 2019 03 14;37(12):1642-1650. Epub 2019 Feb 14.

Research and Development Dept., Multi-Chemical Industry, Lot. 157, Z I, Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P.: 278, Mohammedia 28810, Morocco. Electronic address:

Rift Valley fever (RVF) causes serious health and economic losses to the livestock industry as well as a significant cause of human disease. The prevention of RVF in Africa is a global priority, however, available vaccines have only been partially effective. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of a live, attenuated recombinant RVFV arMP-12ΔNSm21/384 nucleotide deletion vaccine candidate in domestic ruminants. Evaluation involved testing to determine the infectivity titer of the vaccine virus in Vero cells for industrial scale up vaccine production. Safety experiments were conducted to determine the potential of the vaccine virus to revert to virulence by serial passages in sheep, the possibility of virus spread from vaccinated sheep and calves to unvaccinated animals, and the potential health effects of administering overdoses of the vaccine to sheep, goats and calves. The immunogenicity of 3 doses of 10, 10 and 10 Tissue Culture Infectious Doses (TCID) of the vaccine was assessed in 3 groups of 10 sheep and 3 groups of 10 goats, and doses of 10, 10 and 10 TCID was evaluated in 3 groups of 10 calves subcutaenous vaccintation. The results showed that the infectivity titer of the vaccine virus was 10 TCID/ml, that the vaccine did not spread from vaccinated to un-vaccinated animals, there was no evidence of reversion to virulence in sheep and the vaccine overdoses did not cause any adverse effects. The immunogenicity among sheep, goats and calves indicated that doses of 10-10 TCID elicited detectable antibody by day 7 post-vaccination (PV) with antibody titers ranging from 0.6 log to 2.1 log on day 14 PV with sustained titers through day 28 PV. Overall, these findings indicated that the RVFV arMP-12ΔNSm21/384 vaccine is a promising candidate for the prevention of RVF among domestic ruminants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vaccine.2019.01.067DOI Listing
March 2019

Comparative evaluation of three capripoxvirus-vectored peste des petits ruminants vaccines.

Virology 2018 01 1;514:211-215. Epub 2017 Dec 1.

Research and Development, MCI Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z. I., Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P: 278, Mohammedia 28810, Morocco. Electronic address:

Sheep and goat pox (SGP) with peste des petits ruminants (PPR) are transboundary viral diseases of small ruminants that cause huge economic losses. Recombinant vaccines that can protect from both infections have been reported as a promising solution for the future. SGP was used as a vector to express two structural proteins hemagglutinin or the fusion protein of PPRV. We compared immunity conferred by recombinant capripoxvirus vaccines expressing H or F or both HF. Safety and efficacy were evaluated in goats and sheep. Two vaccine doses were tested in sheep, 10TCDI50 in 1ml dose was retained for the further experiment. Results showed that the recombinant HF confers an earlier and stronger immunity against both SGP and PPR. This recombinant vaccine protect also against the disease in exposed and unexposed sheep. The potential Differentiating Infected from Vaccinated Animals of recombinant vaccines is of great advantage in any eradication program.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.virol.2017.11.015DOI Listing
January 2018

Susceptibility of Moroccan sheep and goat breeds to peste des petits ruminants virus.

Acta Vet Scand 2017 Sep 7;59(1):56. Epub 2017 Sep 7.

Research and Development, MCI Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z I, Sud-Ouest (ERAC), B.P. 278, 28810, Mohammedia, Morocco.

Background: Peste des petits ruminants (PPR) is a highly contagious viral disease of small ruminants in Asia and Africa. In 2008, a PPR outbreak was reported for the first time in Morocco and a mass vaccination campaign allowed control of the disease. In this study, the susceptibility of four Moroccan local breeds of small ruminants to PPR virus was investigated by experimental infections. The objective was to make recommendations for improved epidemiological surveillance in Morocco by evaluating the susceptibility of the dominant Moroccan small ruminant breeds. Three parameters were studied: hyperthermia, clinical scoring and virus excretion. The outcome was compared to Alpine goats, which are considered one of the most sensitive breeds.

Results: The study showed that the local goat breed was the most sensitive breed with a susceptibility rate of 67%, followed by Timahdit, Beni Guil and Sardi sheep with 48, 29 and 26%, respectively. Serological testing including enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and viral neutralization showed that the Timahdit breed developed a stronger antibody response compared to the other breeds. Although the clinical signs observed in the sheep were mild, evidence of viral excretion was detected by means of a polymerase chain reaction assay.

Conclusions: It is recommended that effective surveillance should focus on susceptible breeds complemented with serological surveillance of the sheep population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13028-017-0323-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5590148PMC
September 2017

Re-emergence of Peste des Petits Ruminants virus in 2015 in Morocco: Molecular characterization and experimental infection in Alpine goats.

Vet Microbiol 2016 Dec 13;197:137-141. Epub 2016 Nov 13.

Research and Development, MCI Santé Animale, Lot. 157, Z. I., Sud-Ouest (ERAC) B.P.: 278, Mohammedia 28810, Morocco.

Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR) is a transboundary viral disease of small ruminants that causes huge economic losses in Africa, The Middle East and Asia. In Morocco, the first PPR outbreak was notified in 2008. Since then no cases were reported for seven years, probably due to three successive vaccination campaigns during 2008-2011 and close surveillance at the border areas. In June 2015, the disease re-emerged in Morocco, raising questions about the origin of the virus. The PPR virus was confirmed by qRT-PCR and virus was isolated from clinical samples on VeroNectin-4 cells. The disease was experimentally reproduced in Alpine goats using both sheep and goat derived outbreak isolates. Molecular characterization of the 2015 Moroccan PPR isolate confirmed the identity of the virus as lineage IV, closely related to the 2012 Algerian (KP793696) and 2012 Tunisian (KM068121) isolates and significantly distinct from the previous PPRV Morocco 2008 strain (HQ131927). Therefore this study confirms a new incursion of PPR virus in Morocco during 2015 and highlights the urgency of implementation of a common control strategy to combat PPR in Maghreb region in North Africa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vetmic.2016.11.006DOI Listing
December 2016
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