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Sample records for africa rift valley

  1. TDRS satellite over African Rift Valley, Kenya, Africa

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1983-01-01

    This post deploy view of a TDRS satellite shows a segment of the African Rift Valley near Lake Baringo, Kenya, Africa (3.0S, 36.0E). The African Rift Valley system is a geologic fault having its origins in southern Turkey, through the near east forming the bed of the Jordan River, Gulf of Aqaba, the Red Sea and down through east Africa. The line of lakes and valleys of east Africa are the result of the faulting activity.

  2. New vectors of Rift Valley fever in West Africa.

    PubMed Central

    Fontenille, D.; Traore-Lamizana, M.; Diallo, M.; Thonnon, J.; Digoutte, J. P.; Zeller, H. G.

    1998-01-01

    After an outbreak of Rift Valley fever in Southern Mauritania in 1987, entomologic studies were conducted in a bordering region in Sénégal from 1991 to 1996 to identify the sylvatic vectors of Rift Valley fever virus. The virus was isolated from the floodwater mosquitoes Aedes vexans and Ae. ochraceus. In 1974 and 1983, the virus had been isolated from Ae. dalzieli. Although these vectors differ from the main vectors in East and South Africa, they use the same type of breeding sites and also feed on cattle and sheep. Although enzootic vectors have now been identified in West Africa, the factors causing outbreaks remain unclear. PMID:9621201

  3. Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-transmitted virus or arbovirus that is endemic in sub-Saharan Africa. In the last decade, Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks have resulted in loss of human and animal life, as well as had significant economic impact. The disease in livestock is primarily a...

  4. Persistence of Rift Valley fever virus in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gachohi, J.; Hansen, F.; Bett, B.; Kitala, P.

    2012-04-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFv) is a mosquito-borne pathogen of livestock, wildlife and humans that causes severe outbreaks in intervals of several years. One of the open questions is how the virus persists between outbreaks. We developed a spatially-explicit, individual-based simulation model of the RVFv transmission dynamics to investigate this question. The model, is based on livestock and mosquito population dynamics. Spatial aspects are explicitly represented by a set of grid cells that represent mosquito breeding sites. A grid cell measures 500 by 500m and the model considers a grid of 100 by 100 grid cells; the model thus operates on the regional scale of 2500km2. Livestock herds move between grid cells, and provide connectivity between the cells. The model is used to explore the spatio-temporal dynamics of RVFv persistence in absence of a wildlife reservoir in an east African semi-arid context. Specifically, the model assesses the importance of local virus persistence in mosquito breeding sites relative to global virus persistence mitigated by movement of hosts. Local persistence is determined by the length of time the virus remains in a mosquito breeding site once introduced. In the model, this is a function of the number of mosquitoes that emerge infected and their lifespan. Global persistence is determined by the level of connectivity between isolated grid cells. Our work gives insights into the ecological and epidemiological conditions under which RVFv persists. The implication for disease surveillance and management are discussed.

  5. Rift Valley Fever Review

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a disease of animals and humans that occurs in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. A Phlebovirus in the family Bunyaviridae causes the disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes. Epidemics occur during years of unusually heavy rainfall that assessment models are being develo...

  6. East African Rift Valley, Kenya

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This rare, cloud free view of the East African Rift Valley, Kenya (1.5N, 35.5E) shows a clear view of the Turkwell River Valley, an offshoot of the African REift System. The East African Rift is part of a vast plate fracture which extends from southern Turkey, through the Red Sea, East Africa and into Mozambique. Dark green patches of forests are seen along the rift margin and tea plantations occupy the cooler higher ground.

  7. Prediction, Assessment of the Rift Valley Fever Activity in East and Southern Africa 2006 - 2008 and Possible Vector Control Strategies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Historical episodic outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) since the early 1950s have been associated with cyclical patterns (El Niño and La Niña) of El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon which results in elevated and widespread rainfall over the RVF endemic areas of Africa. Using satellite ...

  8. Prediction, Assessment of the Rift Valley fever Activity in East and Southern Africa 2006 - 2008 and Possible Vector Control Strategies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Historical outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) since the early 1950s have been associated with cyclical patterns of the El Nino/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon which results in elevated and widespread rainfall over the RVF endemic areas of Africa. Using satellite measurements of global and ...

  9. Epidemiologic and Environmental Risk Factors of Rift Valley Fever in Southern Africa from 2008 to 2011

    PubMed Central

    Glancey, Margaret M.; Linthicum, Kenneth J.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Background: Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks have been associated with periods of widespread and above-normal rainfall over several months. Knowledge on the environmental factors influencing disease transmission dynamics has provided the basis for developing models to predict RVF outbreaks in Africa. From 2008 to 2011, South Africa experienced the worst wave of RVF outbreaks in almost 40 years. We investigated rainfall-associated environmental factors in southern Africa preceding these outbreaks. Methods: RVF epizootic records obtained from the World Animal Health Information Database (WAHID), documenting livestock species affected, location, and time, were analyzed. Environmental variables including rainfall and satellite-derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data were collected and assessed in outbreak regions to understand the underlying drivers of the outbreaks. Results: The predominant domestic vertebrate species affected in 2008 and 2009 were cattle, when outbreaks were concentrated in the eastern provinces of South Africa. In 2010 and 2011, outbreaks occurred in the interior and southern provinces affecting over 16,000 sheep. The highest number of cases occurred between January and April but epidemics occurred in different regions every year, moving from the northeast of South Africa toward the southwest with each progressing year. The outbreaks showed a pattern of increased rainfall preceding epizootics ranging from 9 to 152 days; however, NDVI and rainfall were less correlated with the start of the outbreaks than has been observed in eastern Africa. Conclusions: Analyses of the multiyear RVF outbreaks of 2008 to 2011 in South Africa indicated that rainfall, NDVI, and other environmental and geographical factors, such as land use, drainage, and topography, play a role in disease emergence. Current and future investigations into these factors will be able to contribute to improving spatial accuracy of models to map risk areas

  10. Epidemiologic Investigations into Outbreaks of Rift Valley Fever in Humans, South Africa, 2008–2011

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, Juno; Weyer, Jacqueline; Cengimbo, Ayanda; Landoh, Dadja E.; Jacobs, Charlene; Ntuli, Sindile; Modise, Motshabi; Mathonsi, Moshe; Mashishi, Morton S.; Leman, Patricia A.; le Roux, Chantel; Jansen van Vuren, Petrus; Kemp, Alan; Paweska, Janusz T.; Blumberg, Lucille

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an emerging zoonosis posing a public health threat to humans in Africa. During sporadic RVF outbreaks in 2008–2009 and widespread epidemics in 2010–2011, 302 laboratory-confirmed human infections, including 25 deaths (case-fatality rate, 8%) were identified. Incidence peaked in late summer to early autumn each year, which coincided with incidence rate patterns in livestock. Most case-patients were adults (median age 43 years), men (262; 87%), who worked in farming, animal health or meat-related industries (83%). Most case-patients reported direct contact with animal tissues, blood, or other body fluids before onset of illness (89%); mosquitoes likely played a limited role in transmission of disease to humans. Close partnership with animal health and agriculture sectors allowed early recognition of human cases and appropriate preventive health messaging.

  11. Has Rift Valley fever virus evolved with increasing severity in human populations in East Africa?

    PubMed

    Baba, Marycelin; Masiga, Daniel K; Sang, Rosemary; Villinger, Jandouwe

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks have occurred across eastern Africa from 1912 to 2010 approximately every 4-15 years, most of which have not been accompanied by significant epidemics in human populations. However, human epidemics during RVF outbreaks in eastern Africa have involved 478 deaths in 1998, 1107 reported cases with 350 deaths from 2006 to 2007 and 1174 cases with 241 deaths in 2008. We review the history of RVF outbreaks in eastern Africa to identify the epidemiological factors that could have influenced its increasing severity in humans. Diverse ecological factors influence outbreak frequency, whereas virus evolution has a greater impact on its virulence in hosts. Several factors could have influenced the lack of information on RVF in humans during earlier outbreaks, but the explosive nature of human RVF epidemics in recent years mirrors the evolutionary trend of the virus. Comparisons between isolates from different outbreaks have revealed an accumulation of genetic mutations and genomic reassortments that have diversified RVF virus genomes over several decades. The threat to humans posed by the diversified RVF virus strains increases the potential public health and socioeconomic impacts of future outbreaks. Understanding the shifting RVF epidemiology as determined by its evolution is key to developing new strategies for outbreak mitigation and prevention of future human RVF casualties. PMID:27329846

  12. Has Rift Valley fever virus evolved with increasing severity in human populations in East Africa?

    PubMed Central

    Baba, Marycelin; Masiga, Daniel K; Sang, Rosemary; Villinger, Jandouwe

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks have occurred across eastern Africa from 1912 to 2010 approximately every 4–15 years, most of which have not been accompanied by significant epidemics in human populations. However, human epidemics during RVF outbreaks in eastern Africa have involved 478 deaths in 1998, 1107 reported cases with 350 deaths from 2006 to 2007 and 1174 cases with 241 deaths in 2008. We review the history of RVF outbreaks in eastern Africa to identify the epidemiological factors that could have influenced its increasing severity in humans. Diverse ecological factors influence outbreak frequency, whereas virus evolution has a greater impact on its virulence in hosts. Several factors could have influenced the lack of information on RVF in humans during earlier outbreaks, but the explosive nature of human RVF epidemics in recent years mirrors the evolutionary trend of the virus. Comparisons between isolates from different outbreaks have revealed an accumulation of genetic mutations and genomic reassortments that have diversified RVF virus genomes over several decades. The threat to humans posed by the diversified RVF virus strains increases the potential public health and socioeconomic impacts of future outbreaks. Understanding the shifting RVF epidemiology as determined by its evolution is key to developing new strategies for outbreak mitigation and prevention of future human RVF casualties. PMID:27329846

  13. Risk factors associated with Rift Valley fever epidemics in South Africa in 2008-11.

    PubMed

    Métras, Raphaëlle; Jewell, Chris; Porphyre, Thibaud; Thompson, Peter N; Pfeiffer, Dirk U; Collins, Lisa M; White, Richard G

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic and vector-borne disease, mainly present in Africa, which represents a threat to human health, animal health and production. South Africa has experienced three major RVF epidemics (1950-51, 1973-75 and 2008-11). Due to data scarcity, no previous study has quantified risk factors associated with RVF epidemics in animals in South Africa. Using the 2008-11 epidemic datasets, a retrospective longitudinal study was conducted to identify and quantify spatial and temporal environmental factors associated with RVF incidence. Cox regressions with a Besag model to account for the spatial effects were fitted to the data. Coefficients were estimated by Bayesian inference using integrated nested Laplace approximation. An increase in vegetation density was the most important risk factor until 2010. In 2010, increased temperature was the major risk factor. In 2011, after the large 2010 epidemic wave, these associations were reversed, potentially confounded by immunity in animals, probably resulting from earlier infection and vaccination. Both vegetation density and temperature should be considered together in the development of risk management strategies. However, the crucial need for improved access to data on population at risk, animal movements and vaccine use is highlighted to improve model predictions. PMID:25804974

  14. Detection and Response for Rift Valley fever

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever is a viral disease that impacts domestic livestock and humans in Africa and the Middle East, and poses a threat to military operations in these areas. We describe a Rift Valley fever Risk Monitoring website, and its ability to predict risk of disease temporally and spatially. We al...

  15. Rift Valley Fever (RVF)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Outbreak resources, VHF information for specific groups, virus ecology, references... RVF Distribution Map Rift Valley Fever Transmission ... Outbreaks Outbreak Summaries RVF Distribution Map Resources Virus Ecology File Formats Help: How do I view different ...

  16. Rift Valley fever virus: a seroepidemiologic study of small terrestrial vertebrates in South Africa.

    PubMed

    Pretorius, A; Oelofsen, M J; Smith, M S; van der Ryst, E

    1997-12-01

    Epizootics of Rift Valley fever (RVF) are often associated with periods of heavy rainfall, which are favorable for mosquito vectors. However, in seasons with normal or low rainfall, enzootic circulation occurs, suggesting the existence of a natural host that can act as a cryptic carrier during interepizootic periods. To confirm the role of heavy rainfall in epizootic circulation, and to identify a possible natural host of RVF virus, serum samples from small terrestrial mammals in the Free State and Northern Cape regions of South Africa were collected before and after the 1988 floods. These areas are known to support epizootic circulation of RVF virus. The samples were tested for the presence of RVF virus-specific IgG using an ELISA and positive sera were confirmed by a neutralization test. Forty-seven (15%) of 312 Aethomys namaquensis (Namaqua rock rat) had antibodies to RVF virus. Of these positive sera, nine (6%) of 141 were collected before the floods of 1988 and 38 (22%) of 171 were collected afterwards (P = 0.001). Naive A. namaquensis were inoculated with RVF virus and developed a viremia, but no clinical symptoms, suggesting that they can act as temporary asymptomatic carriers of the virus. These results suggest a role for A. namaquensis as a cryptic carrier for RVF virus during interepizootic periods and support the results of other studies suggesting an amplifying role for heavy rainfall in the circulation of RVF virus. PMID:9430529

  17. Sequential Rift Valley Fever Outbreaks in Eastern Africa Caused by Multiple Lineages of the Virus

    PubMed Central

    Nderitu, Leonard; Lee, John S.; Omolo, Jared; Omulo, Sylvia; O'Guinn, Monica L.; Hightower, Allen; Mosha, Fausta; Mohamed, Mohamed; Munyua, Peninah; Nganga, Zipporah; Hiett, Kelli; Seal, Bruce; Feikin, Daniel R.; Breiman, Robert F.

    2011-01-01

    Background. During the Rift Valley fever (RVF) epidemic of 2006–2007 in eastern Africa, spatial mapping of the outbreaks across Kenya, Somalia, and Tanzania was performed and the RVF viruses were isolated and genetically characterized. Methods. Following confirmation of the RVF epidemic in Kenya on 19 December 2006 and in Tanzania on 2 February 2007, teams were sent to the field for case finding. Human, livestock, and mosquito specimens were collected and viruses isolated. The World Health Organization response team in Kenya worked with the WHO’s polio surveillance team inside Somalia to collect information and specimens from Somalia. Results. Seven geographical foci that reported hundreds of livestock and >25 cases in humans between December 2006 and June 2007 were identified. The onset of RVF cases in each epidemic focus was preceded by heavy rainfall and flooding for at least 10 days. Full-length genome analysis of 16 RVF virus isolates recovered from humans, livestock, and mosquitoes in 5 of the 7 outbreak foci revealed 3 distinct lineages of the viruses within and across outbreak foci. Conclusion. The findings indicate that the sequential RVF epidemics in the region were caused by multiple lineages of the RVF virus, sometimes independently activated or introduced in distinct outbreak foci. PMID:21282193

  18. Recent Outbreaks of Rift Valley Fever in East Africa and the Middle East

    PubMed Central

    Himeidan, Yousif E.; Kweka, Eliningaya J.; Mahgoub, Mostafa M.; El Rayah, El Amin; Ouma, Johnson O.

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an important neglected, emerging, mosquito-borne disease with severe negative impact on human and animal health. Mosquitoes in the Aedes genus have been considered as the reservoir, as well as vectors, since their transovarially infected eggs withstand desiccation and larvae hatch when in contact with water. However, different mosquito species serve as epizootic/epidemic vectors of RVF, creating a complex epidemiologic pattern in East Africa. The recent RVF outbreaks in Somalia (2006–2007), Kenya (2006–2007), Tanzania (2007), and Sudan (2007–2008) showed extension to districts, which were not involved before. These outbreaks also demonstrated the changing epidemiology of the disease from being originally associated with livestock, to a seemingly highly virulent form infecting humans and causing considerably high-fatality rates. The amount of rainfall is considered to be the main factor initiating RVF outbreaks. The interaction between rainfall and local environment, i.e., type of soil, livestock, and human determine the space-time clustering of RVF outbreaks. Contact with animals or their products was the most dominant risk factor to transfer the infection to humans. Uncontrolled movement of livestock during an outbreak is responsible for introducing RVF to new areas. For example, the virus that caused the Saudi Arabia outbreak in 2000 was found to be the same strain that caused the 1997–98 outbreaks in East Africa. A strategy that involves active surveillance with effective case management and diagnosis for humans and identifying target areas for animal vaccination, restriction on animal movements outside the affected areas, identifying breeding sites, and targeted intensive mosquito control programs has been shown to succeed in limiting the effect of RVF outbreak and curb the spread of the disease from the onset. PMID:25340047

  19. Recent outbreaks of rift valley Fever in East Africa and the middle East.

    PubMed

    Himeidan, Yousif E; Kweka, Eliningaya J; Mahgoub, Mostafa M; El Rayah, El Amin; Ouma, Johnson O

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an important neglected, emerging, mosquito-borne disease with severe negative impact on human and animal health. Mosquitoes in the Aedes genus have been considered as the reservoir, as well as vectors, since their transovarially infected eggs withstand desiccation and larvae hatch when in contact with water. However, different mosquito species serve as epizootic/epidemic vectors of RVF, creating a complex epidemiologic pattern in East Africa. The recent RVF outbreaks in Somalia (2006-2007), Kenya (2006-2007), Tanzania (2007), and Sudan (2007-2008) showed extension to districts, which were not involved before. These outbreaks also demonstrated the changing epidemiology of the disease from being originally associated with livestock, to a seemingly highly virulent form infecting humans and causing considerably high-fatality rates. The amount of rainfall is considered to be the main factor initiating RVF outbreaks. The interaction between rainfall and local environment, i.e., type of soil, livestock, and human determine the space-time clustering of RVF outbreaks. Contact with animals or their products was the most dominant risk factor to transfer the infection to humans. Uncontrolled movement of livestock during an outbreak is responsible for introducing RVF to new areas. For example, the virus that caused the Saudi Arabia outbreak in 2000 was found to be the same strain that caused the 1997-98 outbreaks in East Africa. A strategy that involves active surveillance with effective case management and diagnosis for humans and identifying target areas for animal vaccination, restriction on animal movements outside the affected areas, identifying breeding sites, and targeted intensive mosquito control programs has been shown to succeed in limiting the effect of RVF outbreak and curb the spread of the disease from the onset. PMID:25340047

  20. Analogy between natural gas found in lakes of rift valley system of east Africa and its allied gas in Japan

    SciTech Connect

    Fukuta, O.

    1984-09-01

    The Afar triangle in northeastern Ethiopia is where the Red Sea rift, the Carlsberg Ridge of the Indian Ocean, and the Rift Valley system of east Africa meet. In 1979, J. Welhan and H. Craig reported that hydrothermal vents at 21/sup 0/N, on the East Pacific Rise, are discharging turbid waters. Mixtures of the plumes with ambient seawater contain significant amounts of dissolved H/sub 2/ and CH/sub 4/ as well as mantel-derived /sup 3/He-rich helium. The /sup 3/He//sup 4/He ratios of rock samples obtained earlier by J. Lupton and H. Craig from the Mid-Oceanic Ridge, including the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and the east Pacific Rise, are extremely high at an almost constant value of (1.3 +/- 0.2) x 10/sup -5/, which they defined as the MOR-type helium. However, the deep brines of the Red Sea contain about 1,000 times more methane than normal seawater does, according to Gold and Soter in 1980. Much evidence leads us to believe that large amounts of /sup 3/He-rich helium-bearing natural gas have been gushing out in many places of the Rift Valley of east Africa for a long time. In 1980, Gold and Soter stated that Lake Kivu, which occupies part of the East African rift valley, contains 50 million tons of dissolved methane for which there is no adequate microbial source. The Japanese Islands began to separate from the Asian continent during the early Miocene. The early Miocene was characterized by intensive volcanic activity that produced large amounts of pyroclastics and other volcanic rocks, generally called green tuff in Japan. It has been suggested that oil and gas in green tuff is derived from the upper mantle.

  1. [Rift Valley fever].

    PubMed

    Pépin, M

    2011-06-01

    Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is a zoonotic arbovirosis. Among animals, it mainly affects ruminants, causing abortions in gravid females and mortality among young animals. In humans, RVF virus infection is usually asymptomatic or characterized by a moderate fever. However, in 1 to 3% of cases, more severe forms of the disease (hepatitis, encephalitis, retinitis, hemorrhagic fever) can lead to the death of infected individuals or to major sequels. The RVF virus (Bunyaviridae, genus Phlebovirus) was identified for the first time in the 1930s in Kenya. It then spread over almost all African countries, sometimes causing major epizootics/epidemics. In 2000, the virus was carried out of Africa, in the Middle East Arabian Peninsula. In 2007-2008, Eastern-African countries, including Madagascar, reported significant episodes of RVF virus, this was also the case for the Comoros archipelago and the French island of Mayotte. This ability to spread associated with many vectors, including in Europe, and high viral loads in infected animals led the health authorities worldwide to warn about the potential emergence of RVF virus in areas with a temperate climate. The awareness has increased in recent years with climate changes, which may possibly modify the vector distribution and competence, and prompted many RVF virus-free countries to better prepare for a potential implantation of RVF.

  2. Rift Valley fever virus infection in African Buffalo (Syncerus caffer) herds in rural South Africa: Evidence of interepidemic transmission

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    LaBeaud, A.D.; Cross, P.C.; Getz, W.M.; Glinka, A.; King, C.H.

    2011-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an emerging biodefense pathogen that poses significant threats to human and livestock health. To date, the interepidemic reservoirs of RVFV are not well defined. In a longitudinal survey of infectious diseases among African buffalo during 2000-2006, 550 buffalo were tested for antibodies against RVFV in 820 capture events in 302 georeferenced locations in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Overall, 115 buffalo (21%) were seropositive. Seroprevalence of RVFV was highest (32%) in the first study year, and decreased progressively in subsequent years, but had no detectable impact on survival. Nine (7%) of 126 resampled, initially seronegative animals seroconverted during periods outside any reported regional RVFV outbreaks. Seroconversions for RVFV were detected in significant temporal clusters during 2001-2003 and in 2004. These findings highlight the potential importance of wildlife as reservoirs for RVFV and interepidemic RVFV transmission in perpetuating regional RVFV transmission risk. Copyright ?? 2011 by The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

  3. Rift Valley Fever, Mayotte, 2007–2008

    PubMed Central

    Giry, Claude; Gabrie, Philippe; Tarantola, Arnaud; Pettinelli, François; Collet, Louis; D’Ortenzio, Eric; Renault, Philippe; Pierre, Vincent

    2009-01-01

    After the 2006–2007 epidemic wave of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in East Africa and its circulation in the Comoros, laboratory case-finding of RVF was conducted in Mayotte from September 2007 through May 2008. Ten recent human RVF cases were detected, which confirms the indigenous transmission of RFV virus in Mayotte. PMID:19331733

  4. Mercury in fish from three rift valley lakes (Turkana, Naivasha and Baringo), Kenya, East Africa.

    PubMed

    Campbell, L M; Osano, O; Hecky, R E; Dixon, D G

    2003-01-01

    Total mercury (THg) concentrations were measured for various fish species from Lakes Turkana, Naivasha and Baringo in the rift valley of Kenya. The highest THg concentration (636 ng g(-1) wet weight) was measured for a piscivorous tigerfish Hydrocynus forskahlii from Lake Turkana. THg concentrations for the Perciformes species, the Nile perch Lates niloticus from Lake Turkana and the largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides from Lake Naivasha ranged between 4 and 95 ng g(-1). The tilapiine species in all lakes, including the Nile tilapia Oreochromis niloticus, had consistently low THg concentrations ranging between 2 and 25 ng g(-1). In Lake Naivasha, the crayfish species, Procambrus clarkii, had THg concentrations similar to those for the tilapiine species from the same lake, which is consistent with their shared detritivore diet. THg concentrations in all fish species were usually consistent with their known trophic position, with highest concentrations in piscivores and declining in omnivores, insectivores and detritivores. One exception is the detritivore Labeo cylindricus from Lake Baringo, which had surprisingly elevated THg concentrations (mean=75 ng g(-1)), which was similar to those for the top trophic species (Clarias and Protopterus) in the same lake. Except for two Hydrocynus forskahlii individuals from Lake Turkana, which had THg concentrations near or above the international marketing limit of 500 ng g(-1), THg concentrations in the fish were generally below those of World Health Organization's recommended limit of 200 ng g(-1) for at-risk groups.

  5. Coupling Vector-host Dynamics with Weather Geography and Mitigation Measures to Model Rift Valley Fever in Africa

    PubMed Central

    McMahon, B.H.; Manore, C.A.; Hyman, J.M.; LaBute, M.X.; Fair, J.M.

    2015-01-01

    We present and characterize a multi-host epidemic model of Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus in East Africa with geographic spread on a network, rule-based mitigation measures, and mosquito infection and population dynamics. Susceptible populations are depleted by disease and vaccination and are replenished with the birth of new animals. We observe that the severity of the epidemics is strongly correlated with the duration of the rainy season and that even severe epidemics are abruptly terminated when the rain stops. Because naturally acquired herd immunity is established, total mortality across 25 years is relatively insensitive to many mitigation approaches. Strong reductions in cattle mortality are expected, however, with sufficient reduction in population densities of either vectors or susceptible (ie. unvaccinated) hosts. A better understanding of RVF epidemiology would result from serology surveys to quantify the importance of herd immunity in epidemic control, and sequencing of virus from representative animals to quantify the realative importance of transportation and local reservoirs in nucleating yearly epidemics. Our results suggest that an effective multi-layered mitigation strategy would include vector control, movement control, and vaccination of young animals yearly, even in the absence of expected rainfall. PMID:25892858

  6. A preliminary evaluation of the DDT contamination of sediments in lakes Natron and Bogoria (Eastern Rift Valley, Africa).

    PubMed

    Bettinetti, Roberta; Quadroni, Silvia; Crosa, Giuseppe; Harper, David; Dickie, Jennifer; Kyalo, Margaret; Mavuti, Kenneth; Galassi, Silvana

    2011-06-01

    Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) is still used in Africa for the indoor control of malaria and it may represent a potential hazard for wildlife. The littoral sediments of two alkaline-saline lakes, Natron (Tanzania) and Bogoria (Kenya), in the Eastern Rift Valley, supporting large populations of lesser flamingos (Phoeniconaias minor), were analysed for DDT residues. Physical-chemical analyses (temperature, conductivity, pH and dissolved oxygen) were also performed on the water of the two lakes and in the tributaries of Lake Natron, to evaluate the influence of the environmental variables on pollutant occurrence. At Lake Natron, around 1 km from the sediment collection sites, tree leaves of Acacia tortilis were also collected. The main metabolite found in all sediment samples was pp'DDE, whilst equal concentrations of pp'DDT and pp'DDE were measured in acacia leaves. The levels of DDTs measured in the sediments were within 5.9-30.9 ng g(-1) d.w., reaching the maximum value in a tributary of Lake Natron. On the whole, the contamination of Lake Natron and Lake Bogoria basins seems to be quite moderate. Nevertheless, the pp'DDE/pp'DDT ratio equals 1 in the Acacia tortilis leaves, which makes one suppose that the input of the parent compound was rather recent and could have been from aerial transport or dust from relatively close-by old pesticides storage sites.

  7. Lake level change and total water discharge in East Africa Rift Valley from satellite-based observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hassan, Ayman A.; Jin, Shuanggen

    2014-06-01

    The measurement of total basin water discharge is important for understanding the hydrological and climatologic issues related to the water and energy cycles. Climatic extreme events are normal climatic occurrences in Africa. For example, extensive droughts are regular features in the last few decades in parts of East Africa, which suffers from a lack of in situ observations as well as a lack of regional hydrological models. In this study, multi-disciplinary different types of space-borne observations and global hydrological models are used to study total water discharge in the Great Rift Valley of East Africa (i.e. Lakes Victoria, Tanganyika, and Malawi) from January 2003 to December 2012. The data include the following: (1) total water storage (TWS) variations from Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), (2) the lake level variations from Satellite Alimetric data, (3) rainfall from Tropical Rainfall Measurement Mission (TRMM) products, (4) soil moisture from WaterGAP Global Hydrology Model (WGHM), and (5) water fluxes from Global Land Data Assimilation System (GLDAS). Results show that a significant decline in the average lake level is found for all of the three lakes between 2003 and 2006. GRACE TWS variations of the whole basin area show the same pattern of variation as the average lake level variations estimated from Altimetric data. The TWS in the basin area of Lakes Victoria and Malawi is governed by the surface water stored in each lake itself, while for Lake Tanganyika, it is governed by both surface water and the soil moisture content in the basin area. Furthermore, the effect of rainfall on TWS is also studied. A phase lag of ~ 2 months is found between TRMM rainfall and GRACE TWS (generally, rainfall precedes the GRACE TWS) for the three lakes. In addition, the regional evapotranspiration ET is estimated from the water balance equation using GRACE land-water solutions, rainfall data from TRMM and runoff values obtained as a fraction of rainfall

  8. [The Great Rift Valley. Parasitological results].

    PubMed

    Nozais, J P

    1985-01-01

    East Africa is separated from the continent by the Great Rift Valley which was created at the end of the secondary era limiting then the East Africa under-continent with peculiar fauna and flora features. A several million years long isolation, during the tertiary era, seems to explain that a certain number of protozoan and helminthic diseases present peculiar clinical, epidemiological, therapeutical and parasitological features. The occurrence of those peculiar strains tends to indicate that in this region, for example, the resistance of P. falciparum to amino-4-quinolines is a regional feature which should not largely expand to the rest of the African continent.

  9. Forecast and Validation of the Rift Valley fever outbreak in East Africa: 2006-2007

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Background The instantaneous occurrence of El Nino / Southern Oscillation (ENSO) warm events and anomalous warming of the equatorial western Indian Ocean (WIO) are associated with elevated and widespread rainfall over East Africa. Such, sustained, heavy rainfall in East is associated with the emerg...

  10. Prediction, Assessment of the Rift Valley Fever Activity in East and Southern Africa 2006–2008 and Possible Vector Control Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Anyamba, Assaf; Linthicum, Kenneth J.; Small, Jennifer; Britch, Seth C.; Pak, Edwin; de La Rocque, Stephane; Formenty, Pierre; Hightower, Allen W.; Breiman, Robert F.; Chretien, Jean-Paul; Tucker, Compton J.; Schnabel, David; Sang, Rosemary; Haagsma, Karl; Latham, Mark; Lewandowski, Henry B.; Magdi, Salih Osman; Mohamed, Mohamed Ally; Nguku, Patrick M.; Reynes, Jean-Marc; Swanepoel, Robert

    2010-01-01

    Historical outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) since the early 1950s have been associated with cyclical patterns of the El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon, which results in elevated and widespread rainfall over the RVF endemic areas of Africa. Using satellite measurements of global and regional elevated sea surface temperatures, elevated rainfall, and satellite derived-normalized difference vegetation index data, we predicted with lead times of 2–4 months areas where outbreaks of RVF in humans and animals were expected and occurred in the Horn of Africa, Sudan, and Southern Africa at different time periods from September 2006 to March 2008. Predictions were confirmed by entomological field investigations of virus activity and by reported cases of RVF in human and livestock populations. This represents the first series of prospective predictions of RVF outbreaks and provides a baseline for improved early warning, control, response planning, and mitigation into the future. PMID:20682905

  11. Phylogeographic Reconstructions of a Rift Valley Fever Virus Strain Reveals Transboundary Animal Movements from Eastern Continental Africa to the Union of the Comoros.

    PubMed

    Maquart, M; Pascalis, H; Abdouroihamane, S; Roger, M; Abdourahime, F; Cardinale, E; Cêtre-Sossah, C

    2016-04-01

    Major explosive outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF), an arthropod borne zoonotic disease, occur in humans and animals with significant mortality and economic impact across continental Africa and the Indian Ocean region (Madagascar, the Comoros archipelago). Recently, sporadic human cases have been reported in Mayotte and Grande Comore, two islands belonging to the Comoros archipelago. To identify the hypothetical source of virus introduction in an inter-epidemic or a post-epidemic period, a longitudinal survey of livestock was set up in Comorian ruminant populations, known to be susceptible hosts. The phylogeographic genomic analysis has shown that RVF virus (RVFV) detected in a zebu collected in Anjouan in August 2011 seems to be related to the last known epidemic of RVF which occurred in East Africa and Madagascar (2007-2009). This result highlights the fact that RVFV is maintained within local livestock populations and transboundary animal movements from eastern continental Africa to Indian Ocean islands likely result in RVFV crossover.

  12. Prediction, assessment of the Rift Valley fever activity in East and Southern Africa 2006-2008 and possible vector control strategies.

    PubMed

    Anyamba, Assaf; Linthicum, Kenneth J; Small, Jennifer; Britch, Seth C; Pak, Edwin; de La Rocque, Stephane; Formenty, Pierre; Hightower, Allen W; Breiman, Robert F; Chretien, Jean-Paul; Tucker, Compton J; Schnabel, David; Sang, Rosemary; Haagsma, Karl; Latham, Mark; Lewandowski, Henry B; Magdi, Salih Osman; Mohamed, Mohamed Ally; Nguku, Patrick M; Reynes, Jean-Marc; Swanepoel, Robert

    2010-08-01

    Historical outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) since the early 1950s have been associated with cyclical patterns of the El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon, which results in elevated and widespread rainfall over the RVF endemic areas of Africa. Using satellite measurements of global and regional elevated sea surface temperatures, elevated rainfall, and satellite derived-normalized difference vegetation index data, we predicted with lead times of 2-4 months areas where outbreaks of RVF in humans and animals were expected and occurred in the Horn of Africa, Sudan, and Southern Africa at different time periods from September 2006 to March 2008. Predictions were confirmed by entomological field investigations of virus activity and by reported cases of RVF in human and livestock populations. This represents the first series of prospective predictions of RVF outbreaks and provides a baseline for improved early warning, control, response planning, and mitigation into the future. PMID:20682905

  13. Risk assessment of the introduction of Rift Valley fever from the Horn of Africa to Yemen via legal trade of small ruminants.

    PubMed

    Abdo-Salem, Shaif; Waret-Szkuta, Agnès; Roger, François; Olive, Marie-Marie; Saeed, Khalid; Chevalier, Véronique

    2011-02-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis of increasing global importance. Occurring since 1930 across Africa, it was detected for the first time in Saudi Arabia and Yemen in September 2000, leading to human deaths and major losses in livestock populations. Assuming the virus has not survived in Yemen or has been circulating at a low level, authors qualitatively assessed the likelihood of "re-introduction" of RVF into Yemen through the legal importation of small ruminants from the Horn of Africa. The overall probability of introduction was assessed very low to medium, increasing during festival periods and higher when considering a direct transmission exposure as compared to a vectorial transmission exposure. The uncertainty was considered to be medium underlining important gaps in information that need to be fulfilled in the region. Options to reduce the risk are proposed and discussed, including possible improvements of the current Yemeni quarantine system.

  14. The First Prediction of a Rift Valley Fever Outbreak

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anyamba, Assaf; Chretien, Jean-Paul; Small, Jennifer; Tucker, Compton J.; Formenty, Pierre; Richardson, Jason H.; Britch, Seth C.; Schnabel, David C.; Erickson, Ralph L.; Linthicum, Kenneth J.

    2009-01-01

    El Nino/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) related anomalies were analyzed using a combination of satellite measurements of elevated sea surface temperatures, and subsequent elevated rainfall and satellite derived normalized difference vegetation index data. A Rift Valley fever risk mapping model using these climate data predicted areas where outbreaks of Rift Valley fever in humans and animals were expected and occurred in the Horn of Africa from December 2006 to May 2007. The predictions were subsequently confirmed by entomological and epidemiological field investigations of virus activity in the areas identified as at risk. Accurate spatial and temporal predictions of disease activity, as it occurred first in southern Somalia and then through much of Kenya before affecting northern Tanzania, provided a 2 to 6 week period of warning for the Horn of Africa that facilitated disease outbreak response and mitigation activities. This is the first prospective prediction of a Rift Valley fever outbreak.

  15. Seroprevalence of Rift Valley fever and lumpy skin disease in African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) in the Kruger National Park and Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Fagbo, Shamsudeen; Coetzer, Jacobus A W; Venter, Estelle H

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever and lumpy skin disease are transboundary viral diseases endemic in Africa and some parts of the Middle East, but with increasing potential for global emergence. Wild ruminants, such as the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer), are thought to play a role in the epidemiology of these diseases. This study sought to expand the understanding of the role of buffalo in the maintenance of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) and lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV) by determining seroprevalence to these viruses during an inter-epidemic period. Buffaloes from the Kruger National Park (n = 138) and Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (n = 110) in South Africa were sampled and tested for immunoglobulin G (IgG) and neutralising antibodies against LSDV and RVFV using an indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (I-ELISA) and the serum neutralisation test (SNT). The I-ELISA for LSDV and RVFV detected IgG antibodies in 70 of 248 (28.2%) and 15 of 248 (6.1%) buffaloes, respectively. Using the SNT, LSDV and RVFV neutralising antibodies were found in 5 of 66 (7.6%) and 12 of 57 (21.1%), respectively, of samples tested. The RVFV I-ELISA and SNT results correlated well with previously reported results. Of the 12 SNT RVFV-positive sera, three (25.0%) had very high SNT titres of 1:640. Neutralising antibody titres of more than 1:80 were found in 80.0% of the positive sera tested. The LSDV SNT results did not correlate with results obtained by the I-ELISA and neutralising antibody titres detected were low, with the highest (1:20) recorded in only two buffaloes, whilst 11 buffaloes (4.4%) had evidence of co-infection with both viruses. Results obtained in this study complement other reports suggesting a role for buffaloes in the epidemiology of these diseases during inter-epidemic periods. PMID:25686252

  16. Seroprevalence of Rift Valley fever and lumpy skin disease in African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) in the Kruger National Park and Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Fagbo, Shamsudeen; Coetzer, Jacobus A W; Venter, Estelle H

    2014-10-16

    Rift Valley fever and lumpy skin disease are transboundary viral diseases endemic in Africa and some parts of the Middle East, but with increasing potential for global emergence. Wild ruminants, such as the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer), are thought to play a role in the epidemiology of these diseases. This study sought to expand the understanding of the role of buffalo in the maintenance of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) and lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV) by determining seroprevalence to these viruses during an inter-epidemic period. Buffaloes from the Kruger National Park (n = 138) and Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (n = 110) in South Africa were sampled and tested for immunoglobulin G (IgG) and neutralising antibodies against LSDV and RVFV using an indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (I-ELISA) and the serum neutralisation test (SNT). The I-ELISA for LSDV and RVFV detected IgG antibodies in 70 of 248 (28.2%) and 15 of 248 (6.1%) buffaloes, respectively. Using the SNT, LSDV and RVFV neutralising antibodies were found in 5 of 66 (7.6%) and 12 of 57 (21.1%), respectively, of samples tested. The RVFV I-ELISA and SNT results correlated well with previously reported results. Of the 12 SNT RVFV-positive sera, three (25.0%) had very high SNT titres of 1:640. Neutralising antibody titres of more than 1:80 were found in 80.0% of the positive sera tested. The LSDV SNT results did not correlate with results obtained by the I-ELISA and neutralising antibody titres detected were low, with the highest (1:20) recorded in only two buffaloes, whilst 11 buffaloes (4.4%) had evidence of co-infection with both viruses. Results obtained in this study complement other reports suggesting a role for buffaloes in the epidemiology of these diseases during inter-epidemic periods.

  17. Rift Valley Fever Overview and Recent Developments at USDA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral disease with significant health and economic impacts to domestic animals and humans in much of sub-Saharan Africa. Human infections are believed to occur mainly from mosquito bites and from infectious aerosols. The available strategies for protection...

  18. Rift Valley fever Entomology, Ecology, and Outbreak Risk Factors

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease of domestic ruminants and humans in Africa. The disease is most severe in cattle, sheep, and goats, and it causes high mortality in young animals and abortion in adults. Exotic aanimal breeds from areas where RVF is not endemic tend to be ...

  19. Potential for Rift Valley to be Introduced into North America

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease of domestic ruminants in Africa. The disease is most severe in cattle, sheep, and goats, causing mortality in young animals and abortion in adults. Human infection causes significant morbidity and mortality. RVF occurs in sub-Saharan Afri...

  20. Potential Effects of Rift Valley Fever in the United States

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) has been the cause of disease outbreaks throughout Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, and the infection often results in heavy economic costs through loss of livestock. If RVFV, which is common to select agent lists of the US Department of Health and Human Services and ...

  1. A recombinant Rift Valley fever virus glycoprotein subunit vaccine confers full protection against Rift Valley fever challenge in sheep

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic pathogen causing disease outbreaks in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. The virus has great potential for transboundary spread due to the presence of competent vectors in non-endemic areas. There is currently no fully licensed vaccine suita...

  2. Rift valley fever in the US: Commerce networks, climate, and susceptible vector and host populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne hemorrhagic viral disease with substantial negative impacts on public and animal health in its endemic range of sub-Saharan Africa. Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) could enter the United States and lead to widespread morbidity and mortality in humans, domes...

  3. Combining Hydrology and Mosquito Population Models to Identify the Drivers of Rift Valley Fever Emergence in Semi-Arid Regions of West Africa

    PubMed Central

    Soti, Valérie; Tran, Annelise; Degenne, Pascal; Chevalier, Véronique; Lo Seen, Danny; Thiongane, Yaya; Diallo, Mawlouth; Guégan, Jean-François; Fontenille, Didier

    2012-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a vector-borne viral zoonosis of increasing global importance. RVF virus (RVFV) is transmitted either through exposure to infected animals or through bites from different species of infected mosquitoes, mainly of Aedes and Culex genera. These mosquitoes are very sensitive to environmental conditions, which may determine their presence, biology, and abundance. In East Africa, RVF outbreaks are known to be closely associated with heavy rainfall events, unlike in the semi-arid regions of West Africa where the drivers of RVF emergence remain poorly understood. The assumed importance of temporary ponds and rainfall temporal distribution therefore needs to be investigated. Methodology/Principal Findings A hydrological model is combined with a mosquito population model to predict the abundance of the two main mosquito species (Aedes vexans and Culex poicilipes) involved in RVFV transmission in Senegal. The study area is an agropastoral zone located in the Ferlo Valley, characterized by a dense network of temporary water ponds which constitute mosquito breeding sites. The hydrological model uses daily rainfall as input to simulate variations of pond surface areas. The mosquito population model is mechanistic, considers both aquatic and adult stages and is driven by pond dynamics. Once validated using hydrological and entomological field data, the model was used to simulate the abundance dynamics of the two mosquito species over a 43-year period (1961–2003). We analysed the predicted dynamics of mosquito populations with regards to the years of main outbreaks. The results showed that the main RVF outbreaks occurred during years with simultaneous high abundances of both species. Conclusion/Significance Our study provides for the first time a mechanistic insight on RVFV transmission in West Africa. It highlights the complementary roles of Aedes vexans and Culex poicilipes mosquitoes in virus transmission, and recommends the

  4. Diagnostic approaches for Rift Valley fever.

    PubMed

    Wilson, W C; Weingartl, H M; Drolet, B S; Davé, K; Harpster, M H; Johnson, P A; Faburay, B; Ruder, M G; Richt, J A; McVey, D S

    2013-01-01

    Disease outbreaks caused by arthropod-borne animal viruses (arboviruses) resulting in significant livestock and economic losses world-wide appear to be increasing. Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is an important arbovirus that causes lethal disease in cattle, camels, sheep and goats in Sub-Saharan Africa. There is concern that this virus could spread because of global warming, increased animal trade or through bioterrorism. This paper discusses the current and developing approaches to diagnosis of RVF. Diagnostic assays are available for RVF, but availability can be limited and there is a need for global harmonization. Continued improvement of standard serological and viral genome amplification approaches, including new embedded/syndromic testing, biosensor, emerging virus detection and characterization technologies is needed.

  5. Development and Assessment of a Geographic Knowledge-Based Model for Mapping Suitable Areas for Rift Valley Fever Transmission in Eastern Africa.

    PubMed

    Tran, Annelise; Trevennec, Carlène; Lutwama, Julius; Sserugga, Joseph; Gély, Marie; Pittiglio, Claudia; Pinto, Julio; Chevalier, Véronique

    2016-09-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne disease affecting ruminants and humans, is one of the most important viral zoonoses in Africa. The objective of the present study was to develop a geographic knowledge-based method to map the areas suitable for RVF amplification and RVF spread in four East African countries, namely, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Ethiopia, and to assess the predictive accuracy of the model using livestock outbreak data from Kenya and Tanzania. Risk factors and their relative importance regarding RVF amplification and spread were identified from a literature review. A numerical weight was calculated for each risk factor using an analytical hierarchy process. The corresponding geographic data were collected, standardized and combined based on a weighted linear combination to produce maps of the suitability for RVF transmission. The accuracy of the resulting maps was assessed using RVF outbreak locations in livestock reported in Kenya and Tanzania between 1998 and 2012 and the ROC curve analysis. Our results confirmed the capacity of the geographic information system-based multi-criteria evaluation method to synthesize available scientific knowledge and to accurately map (AUC = 0.786; 95% CI [0.730-0.842]) the spatial heterogeneity of RVF suitability in East Africa. This approach provides users with a straightforward and easy update of the maps according to data availability or the further development of scientific knowledge. PMID:27631374

  6. Development and Assessment of a Geographic Knowledge-Based Model for Mapping Suitable Areas for Rift Valley Fever Transmission in Eastern Africa

    PubMed Central

    Tran, Annelise; Trevennec, Carlène; Lutwama, Julius; Sserugga, Joseph; Gély, Marie; Pittiglio, Claudia; Pinto, Julio; Chevalier, Véronique

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne disease affecting ruminants and humans, is one of the most important viral zoonoses in Africa. The objective of the present study was to develop a geographic knowledge-based method to map the areas suitable for RVF amplification and RVF spread in four East African countries, namely, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Ethiopia, and to assess the predictive accuracy of the model using livestock outbreak data from Kenya and Tanzania. Risk factors and their relative importance regarding RVF amplification and spread were identified from a literature review. A numerical weight was calculated for each risk factor using an analytical hierarchy process. The corresponding geographic data were collected, standardized and combined based on a weighted linear combination to produce maps of the suitability for RVF transmission. The accuracy of the resulting maps was assessed using RVF outbreak locations in livestock reported in Kenya and Tanzania between 1998 and 2012 and the ROC curve analysis. Our results confirmed the capacity of the geographic information system-based multi-criteria evaluation method to synthesize available scientific knowledge and to accurately map (AUC = 0.786; 95% CI [0.730–0.842]) the spatial heterogeneity of RVF suitability in East Africa. This approach provides users with a straightforward and easy update of the maps according to data availability or the further development of scientific knowledge. PMID:27631374

  7. Development and Assessment of a Geographic Knowledge-Based Model for Mapping Suitable Areas for Rift Valley Fever Transmission in Eastern Africa.

    PubMed

    Tran, Annelise; Trevennec, Carlène; Lutwama, Julius; Sserugga, Joseph; Gély, Marie; Pittiglio, Claudia; Pinto, Julio; Chevalier, Véronique

    2016-09-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne disease affecting ruminants and humans, is one of the most important viral zoonoses in Africa. The objective of the present study was to develop a geographic knowledge-based method to map the areas suitable for RVF amplification and RVF spread in four East African countries, namely, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Ethiopia, and to assess the predictive accuracy of the model using livestock outbreak data from Kenya and Tanzania. Risk factors and their relative importance regarding RVF amplification and spread were identified from a literature review. A numerical weight was calculated for each risk factor using an analytical hierarchy process. The corresponding geographic data were collected, standardized and combined based on a weighted linear combination to produce maps of the suitability for RVF transmission. The accuracy of the resulting maps was assessed using RVF outbreak locations in livestock reported in Kenya and Tanzania between 1998 and 2012 and the ROC curve analysis. Our results confirmed the capacity of the geographic information system-based multi-criteria evaluation method to synthesize available scientific knowledge and to accurately map (AUC = 0.786; 95% CI [0.730-0.842]) the spatial heterogeneity of RVF suitability in East Africa. This approach provides users with a straightforward and easy update of the maps according to data availability or the further development of scientific knowledge.

  8. Diagnostic approaches for Rift Valley Fever

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Disease outbreaks caused by arthropod-borne animal viruses (arboviruses) resulting in significant livestock and economic losses world-wide appear to be increasing. Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus (RVFV) is an important arbovirus that causes lethal disease in cattle, camels, sheep and goats in Sub-Saha...

  9. Off-axis volcanism in the Gregory rift, east Africa: implications for models of continental rifting

    SciTech Connect

    Bosworth, W.

    1987-05-01

    The largest volcanic centers of the Gregory rift occur in two belts located 100 to 150 km east and west of the axis of the rift valley. These off-axis volcanic belts include the highest peaks on the continent of Africa and are interpreted to lie above the intersection of low-angle detachment systems with the base of a regionally thinned lithosphere. These detachment systems are manifested at the surface as a series of breakaway zones and regional bounding faults that produce subbasins with half-graben form. The asymmetry of subbasins alternates along the rift axis, indicating that the polarity of the underlying active detachment systems also reverses. The detachments are separated laterally by regional oblique-slip accommodation zones typified by wrench-style tectonism. Off-axis from the rift, the detachments are inferred to merge along strike as they cut to the base of the lithosphere. This results in irregular but persistent paired zones of volcanism and lithospheric thinning off-axis from the rift proper. The development of major volcanic cones such as Mount Kilimanjaro may be controlled by the interaction of leaky accommodation zones with the regions of structurally thinned lithosphere. The central Kenya hot spot has produced the anomalous quantities of volcanic material that fills the Gregory rift and probably enhances the off-axis volcanism but does not directly control its location. The model proposed here for tectonic controls of volcanism in the Gregory rift may be applicable to Phanerozoic continental rifts in general.

  10. Biologically Informed Individual-based Network Model for Rift Valley Fever in the US and Evaluation of Mitigation Strategies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic disease endemic in Sub-Saharan Africa with periodic outbreaks in human and animal populations. Mosquitoes are the primary disease vectors; however, Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) can also spread by direct contact with infected tissues. The transmission cycle is ...

  11. Continental rift evolution: From rift initiation to incipient break-up in the Main Ethiopian Rift, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corti, Giacomo

    2009-09-01

    The Main Ethiopian Rift is a key sector of the East African Rift System that connects the Afar depression, at Red Sea-Gulf of Aden junction, with the Turkana depression and Kenya Rift to the South. It is a magmatic rift that records all the different stages of rift evolution from rift initiation to break-up and incipient oceanic spreading: it is thus an ideal place to analyse the evolution of continental extension, the rupture of lithospheric plates and the dynamics by which distributed continental deformation is progressively focused at oceanic spreading centres. The first tectono-magmatic event related to the Tertiary rifting was the eruption of voluminous flood basalts that apparently occurred in a rather short time interval at around 30 Ma; strong plateau uplift, which resulted in the development of the Ethiopian and Somalian plateaus now surrounding the rift valley, has been suggested to have initiated contemporaneously or shortly after the extensive flood-basalt volcanism, although its exact timing remains controversial. Voluminous volcanism and uplift started prior to the main rifting phases, suggesting a mantle plume influence on the Tertiary deformation in East Africa. Different plume hypothesis have been suggested, with recent models indicating the existence of deep superplume originating at the core-mantle boundary beneath southern Africa, rising in a north-northeastward direction toward eastern Africa, and feeding multiple plume stems in the upper mantle. However, the existence of this whole-mantle feature and its possible connection with Tertiary rifting are highly debated. The main rifting phases started diachronously along the MER in the Mio-Pliocene; rift propagation was not a smooth process but rather a process with punctuated episodes of extension and relative quiescence. Rift location was most probably controlled by the reactivation of a lithospheric-scale pre-Cambrian weakness; the orientation of this weakness (roughly NE-SW) and the Late

  12. Classification of the rift zones of venus: Rift valleys and graben belts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guseva, E. N.

    2016-05-01

    The spatial distribution of rift zones of Venus, their topographic configuration, morphometric parameters, and the type of volcanism associating with rifts were analyzed. This allowed the main characteristic features of rifts to be revealed and two different types of rift-forming structures, serving for classification of rift zones as rift valleys and graben belts, to be isolated. These structural types (facies) of rift zones are differently expressed in the relief: rift valleys are individual deep (several kilometers) W-shaped canyons, while graben belts are clusters of multiple V-shaped and rather shallow (hundreds of meters) depressions. Graben belts are longer and wider, as compared to rift valleys. Rift valleys are spatially associated with dome-shaped volcanic rises and large volcanos (concentrated volcanic sources), while graben belts do not exhibit such associations. Volcanic activity in the graben belts are presented by spacious lava fields with no apparent sources of volcanism. Graben belts and rift valleys were formed during the Atlian Period of geologic history of Venus, and they characterized the tectonic style of the planet at the late stages of its geologic evolution. Formation of this or that structural facies of the rift zones of Venus were probably governed by the thickness of the lithosphere, its rheological properties, and the development degree of the mantle diapirs associating with rift zones.

  13. Recurrence of Rift Valley fever in Egypt.

    PubMed

    Arthur, R R; el-Sharkawy, M S; Cope, S E; Botros, B A; Oun, S; Morrill, J C; Shope, R E; Hibbs, R G; Darwish, M A; Imam, I Z

    1993-11-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) has been recorded in man and in domestic animals in Egypt after a 12-year absence. Human infections were first noted in the Aswan Governorate in late May, 1993. Only cases of ocular disease, an infrequent and late manifestation, were reported. Of 41 cases, 35 were tested serologically and 27 (77%) had RVF virus-specific IgM antibodies. An estimated 600-1500 infections occurred in the region. Abortions in cattle and buffalo were seen concurrently and antibodies to RVFV were present in 39% of domestic livestock, presumably unvaccinated. RVFV was isolated from an aborted water buffalo fetus.

  14. 77 FR 68783 - Prospective Grant of Co-Exclusive License: Veterinary Vaccines for Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-11-16

    ...: Veterinary Vaccines for Rift Valley Fever Virus AGENCY: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC...-exclusive license in Africa, in the field of use of veterinary vaccines, to practice the inventions listed... attenuated vaccine constructs that contain complete deletions of critical virulence factors of Rift...

  15. Current Status on the Development of Operator Safe Diagnostic Tools for Rift Valley Fever

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a disease of animals and humans that occurs in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. It is caused by a Phlebovirus in the family Bunyaviridae. Mosquito-borne epidemics occur during years of unusually heavy rainfall. Domestic cattle, sheep and goats are highly susceptible to...

  16. Blood Meal Analysis of Mosquitoes Involved in a Rift Valley fever Outbreak

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Background: Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonosis of domestic ruminants in Africa. Bloodfed mosquitoes collected during the 2006-2007 RVF outbreak in Kenya were analyzed to determine the virus infection status and animal source of the bloodmeals. Bloodmeals from individual mosquito abdomens were sc...

  17. Vector Competence of Selected African Mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) Species for Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in Egypt, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia have indicated the potential for this disease to spread from its enzootic areas in sub-Saharan Africa. Because little is known about the potential for most African mosquito species to transmit RVF virus (RVFV), we conducted stud...

  18. Evaluation of lamb and calf responses to Rift Valley fever MP-12 vaccination

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an important viral disease of animals and humans in Africa and the Middle East that is transmitted by mosquitoes. The disease is of concern to international agricultural and public health communities. The RVF MP-12 strain has been the most safety tested attenuated vaccine ...

  19. A Glycoprotein Subunit Vaccine Elicits a Strong Rift Valley Fever Virus Neutralizing Antibody Response in Sheep

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a member of the Bunyaviridae family, is a mosquito-borne zoonotic pathogen that causes serious morbidity and mortality in livestock and humans. The recent spread of the virus beyond its traditional endemic boundaries in Africa to the Arabian Peninsula coupled with the...

  20. One Health –One World Approaches to Detection and Control of Rift Valley Fever

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a disease of animals and humans that occurs in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. A Phlebovirus in the family Bunyaviridae causes the disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes. Epidemics occur during years of unusually heavy rainfall that assessment models are being develop...

  1. Comparison of Rift Valley fever virus replication in North American livestock and wildlife cell lines

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes outbreaks of endemic disease across Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, resulting in high morbidity and mortality among young domestic livestock, frequent abortions in pregnant animals, and potentially severe or fatal disease in humans. The possibility of RVFV spr...

  2. Rift valley fever: recent insights into pathogenesis and prevention.

    PubMed

    Boshra, Hani; Lorenzo, Gema; Busquets, Núria; Brun, Alejandro

    2011-07-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a zoonotic pathogen that primarily affects ruminants but can also be lethal in humans. A negative-stranded RNA virus of the family Bunyaviridae, this pathogen is transmitted mainly via mosquito vectors. RVFV has shown the ability to inflict significant damage to livestock and is also a threat to public health. While outbreaks have traditionally occurred in sub-Saharan Africa, recent outbreaks in the Middle East have raised awareness of the potential of this virus to spread to Europe, Asia, and the Americas. Although the virus was initially characterized almost 80 years ago, the only vaccine approved for widespread veterinary use is an attenuated strain that has been associated with significant pathogenic side effects. However, increased understanding of the molecular biology of the virus over the last few years has led to recent advances in vaccine design and has enabled the development of more-potent prophylactic measures to combat infection. In this review, we discuss several aspects of RVFV, with particular emphasis on the molecular components of the virus and their respective roles in pathogenesis and an overview of current vaccine candidates. Progress in understanding the epidemiology of Rift Valley fever has also enabled prediction of potential outbreaks well in advance, thus providing another tool to combat the physical and economic impact of this disease.

  3. Hydrocarbon potential of Dead Sea Rift valley

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, J.E.; Kashai, E.L.; Croker, P.F.

    1983-03-01

    The Dead Sea Rift is one of the world's unique geologic and topographic features, whose petroleum potential has not yet been evaluated. The sector of the Dead Sea is an asymmetric graben 20 km (12 mi) from rim to rim and over 120 km (75 mi) long. The total throw from the west rim, where the Upper Cretaceous crops out to the deeper portion of the grabens, is more than 8 km (26,200 ft). Throw on the eastern side is considerably greater as the valley wall is largely Precambrian. The level of the Dead Sea is -400 m (-1300 ft) - the lowest place on earth. Asphalt blocks floating from the Dead Sea, along with asphalt and heavy oil seeps in the valley, have been known since biblical times. These are suggestive of leaks from deeper accumulations. Although some exploration drilling has been done, no test has yet reached objectives in the deeper sunken block where the Miocene is figured to be at a depth of at least 7 km (23,000 ft.)

  4. Sociocultural and Economic Dimensions of Rift Valley Fever

    PubMed Central

    Muga, Geoffrey Otieno; Onyango-Ouma, Washington; Sang, Rosemary; Affognon, Hippolyte

    2015-01-01

    Health researchers have advocated for a cross-disciplinary approach to the study and prevention of infectious zoonotic diseases, such as Rift Valley Fever. It is believed that this approach can help bring out the social determinants and effects of the zoonotic diseases for the design of appropriate interventions and public health policy. A comprehensive literature review using a systematic search strategy was undertaken to explore the sociocultural and economic factors that influence the transmission and spread of Rift Valley Fever. Although the findings reveal a paucity of social research on Rift Valley Fever, they suggest that livestock sacrificial rituals, food preparation and consumption practices, gender roles, and inadequate resource base for public institutions are the key factors that influence the transmission. It is concluded that there is need for cross-disciplinary studies to increase the understanding of Rift Valley Fever and facilitate appropriate and timely response and mitigation measures. PMID:25688166

  5. [Rift Valley fever virus: evolution in progress].

    PubMed

    Tolou, H; Plumet, S; Leparc-Goffart, I; Couissinier-Paris, P

    2009-06-01

    Several viruses now circulating in tropical zones around the globe are potential threats for ever-increasing human populations even in temperate zones that have long remained unaffected. The mechanisms underlying transport and transmission, which can be enhanced by human activity, can be even stronger in zones where factors needed to support development of these viruses, i.e., hosts, reservoirs and vectors, are already present. This possibility has been illustrated by dengue virus, and now by the rapid spread of the Chikungunya virus on Reunion Island in 2005 and then in Italy in 2007. The spreading of Chikungunya virus despite its mild reputation had a major unexpected impact. It showed that the evolution of the virus, whether a cause or consequence of observed events, could be determinant. The risk of extension of more pathogenic viruses due to similar mechanisms must be considered as a possibility. In this regard the Rift Valley fever virus, that already involves a large area and has a major reservoir, is one of the viruses that deserves close surveillance.

  6. Molecular biology and genetic diversity of Rift Valley fever virus

    PubMed Central

    Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a member of the family Bunyaviridae, genus Phlebovirus, is the causative agent of Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne disease of ruminant animals and humans. The generation of a large sequence database has facilitated studies of the evolution and spread of the virus. Bayesian analyses indicate that currently circulating strains of RVFV are descended from an ancestral species that emerged from a natural reservoir in Africa when large-scale cattle and sheep farming were introduced during the 19th century. Viruses descended from multiple lineages persist in that region, through infection of reservoir animals and vertical transmission in mosquitoes, emerging in years of heavy rainfall to cause epizootics and epidemics. On a number of occasions, viruses from these lineages have been transported outside the enzootic region through the movement of infected animals or mosquitoes, triggering outbreaks in countries such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Mauritania and Madagascar, where RVF had not previously been seen. Such viruses could potentially become established in their new environments through infection of wild and domestic ruminants and other animals and vertical transmission in local mosquito species. Despite their extensive geographic dispersion, all strains of RVFV remain closely related at the nucleotide and amino acid level. The high degree of conservation of genes encoding the virion surface glycoproteins suggests that a single vaccine should protect against all currently circulating RVFV strains. Similarly, preservation of the sequence of the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase across viral lineages implies that antiviral drugs targeting the enzyme should be effective against all strains. Researchers should be encouraged to collect additional RVFV isolates and perform whole-genome sequencing and phylogenetic analysis, so as to enhance our understanding of the continuing evolution of this important virus. This review forms part of a series

  7. Climate-disease connections: Rift Valley Fever in Kenya

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anyamba, A.; Linthicum, K. J.; Tucker, C. J.

    2001-01-01

    All known Rift Valley fever(RVF) outbreaks in Kenya from 1950 to 1998 followed periods of abnormally high rainfall. On an interannual scale, periods of above normal rainfall in East Africa are associated with the warm phase of the El Nino/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon. Anomalous rainfall floods mosquito-breeding habitats called dambos, which contain transovarially infected mosquito eggs. The eggs hatch Aedes mosquitoes that transmit the RVF virus preferentially to livestock and to humans as well. Analysis of historical data on RVF outbreaks and indicators of ENSO (including Pacific and Indian Ocean sea surface temperatures and the Southern Oscillation Index) indicates that more than three quarters of the RVF outbreaks have occurred during warm ENSO event periods. Mapping of ecological conditions using satellite normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data show that areas where outbreaks have occurred during the satellite recording period (1981-1998) show anomalous positive departures in vegetation greenness, an indicator of above-normal precipitation. This is particularly observed in arid areas of East Africa, which are predominantly impacted by this disease. These results indicate a close association between interannual climate variability and RVF outbreaks in Kenya.

  8. Rift Valley Fever: An Emerging Mosquito-Borne Disease.

    PubMed

    Linthicum, Kenneth J; Britch, Seth C; Anyamba, Assaf

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), an emerging mosquito-borne zoonotic infectious viral disease caused by the RVF virus (RVFV) (Bunyaviridae: Phlebovirus), presents significant threats to global public health and agriculture in Africa and the Middle East. RVFV is listed as a select agent with significant potential for international spread and use in bioterrorism. RVFV has caused large, devastating periodic epizootics and epidemics in Africa over the past ∼60 years, with severe economic and nutritional impacts on humans from illness and livestock loss. In the past 15 years alone, RVFV caused tens of thousands of human cases, hundreds of human deaths, and more than 100,000 domestic animal deaths. Cattle, sheep, goats, and camels are particularly susceptible to RVF and serve as amplifying hosts for the virus. This review highlights recent research on RVF, focusing on vectors and their ecology, transmission dynamics, and use of environmental and climate data to predict disease outbreaks. Important directions for future research are also discussed. PMID:26982443

  9. Common host-derived chemicals increase catches of disease-transmitting mosquitoes and can improve early warning systems for rift valley fever virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne zoonosis, is a major public health problem in sub-Saharan Africa. The emergence and re-emergence of the disease in the last 20 years especially in East Africa, poses a looming health threat which is likely to spread to beyond Africa. This threat is exacerbat...

  10. Seroprevalence of Sheep and Goat Pox, Peste Des Petits Ruminants and Rift Valley Fever in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Boshra, Hani; Truong, Thang; Babiuk, Shawn; Hemida, Maged Gomaa

    2015-01-01

    Sheep and goat pox, peste des petits ruminants and Rift Valley fever are important diseases of small ruminant livestock. Sheep and goat pox, along with peste des petits ruminants, are endemic throughout most of Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Whereas Rift Valley fever is endemic in Africa, outbreaks in the Middle East have been reported over the past decade, including the Arabian Peninsula. Saudi Arabia is a major importer of livestock, and understanding the prevalence of these viral infections would be useful for disease control. In this study, sera from sheep and goats were collected from 3 regions in Saudi Arabia. They were evaluated for antibodies specific to sheep and goat pox, peste des petits ruminants and Rift Valley fever by virus neutralization assays. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to evaluate the seroprevalence of these viruses in sheep and goats.

  11. Seroprevalence of Sheep and Goat Pox, Peste Des Petits Ruminants and Rift Valley Fever in Saudi Arabia

    PubMed Central

    Boshra, Hani; Truong, Thang; Babiuk, Shawn; Hemida, Maged Gomaa

    2015-01-01

    Sheep and goat pox, peste des petits ruminants and Rift Valley fever are important diseases of small ruminant livestock. Sheep and goat pox, along with peste des petits ruminants, are endemic throughout most of Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Whereas Rift Valley fever is endemic in Africa, outbreaks in the Middle East have been reported over the past decade, including the Arabian Peninsula. Saudi Arabia is a major importer of livestock, and understanding the prevalence of these viral infections would be useful for disease control. In this study, sera from sheep and goats were collected from 3 regions in Saudi Arabia. They were evaluated for antibodies specific to sheep and goat pox, peste des petits ruminants and Rift Valley fever by virus neutralization assays. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to evaluate the seroprevalence of these viruses in sheep and goats. PMID:26462199

  12. Seroprevalence of Sheep and Goat Pox, Peste Des Petits Ruminants and Rift Valley Fever in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Boshra, Hani; Truong, Thang; Babiuk, Shawn; Hemida, Maged Gomaa

    2015-01-01

    Sheep and goat pox, peste des petits ruminants and Rift Valley fever are important diseases of small ruminant livestock. Sheep and goat pox, along with peste des petits ruminants, are endemic throughout most of Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Whereas Rift Valley fever is endemic in Africa, outbreaks in the Middle East have been reported over the past decade, including the Arabian Peninsula. Saudi Arabia is a major importer of livestock, and understanding the prevalence of these viral infections would be useful for disease control. In this study, sera from sheep and goats were collected from 3 regions in Saudi Arabia. They were evaluated for antibodies specific to sheep and goat pox, peste des petits ruminants and Rift Valley fever by virus neutralization assays. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to evaluate the seroprevalence of these viruses in sheep and goats. PMID:26462199

  13. A dynamic, climate-driven model of Rift Valley fever.

    PubMed

    Leedale, Joseph; Jones, Anne E; Caminade, Cyril; Morse, Andrew P

    2016-03-31

    Outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in eastern Africa have previously occurred following specific rainfall dynamics and flooding events that appear to support the emergence of large numbers of mosquito vectors. As such, transmission of the virus is considered to be sensitive to environmental conditions and therefore changes in climate can impact the spatiotemporal dynamics of epizootic vulnerability. Epidemiological information describing the methods and parameters of RVF transmission and its dependence on climatic factors are used to develop a new spatio-temporal mathematical model that simulates these dynamics and can predict the impact of changes in climate. The Liverpool RVF (LRVF) model is a new dynamic, process-based model driven by climate data that provides a predictive output of geographical changes in RVF outbreak susceptibility as a result of the climate and local livestock immunity. This description of the multi-disciplinary process of model development is accessible to mathematicians, epidemiological modellers and climate scientists, uniting dynamic mathematical modelling, empirical parameterisation and state-of-the-art climate information.

  14. Chimpanzee Adenovirus Vaccine Provides Multispecies Protection against Rift Valley Fever

    PubMed Central

    Warimwe, George M.; Gesharisha, Joseph; Carr, B. Veronica; Otieno, Simeon; Otingah, Kennedy; Wright, Danny; Charleston, Bryan; Okoth, Edward; Elena, Lopez-Gil; Lorenzo, Gema; Ayman, El-Behiry; Alharbi, Naif K.; Al-dubaib, Musaad A.; Brun, Alejandro; Gilbert, Sarah C.; Nene, Vishvanath; Hill, Adrian V. S.

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV) causes recurrent outbreaks of acute life-threatening human and livestock illness in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. No licensed vaccines are currently available for humans and those widely used in livestock have major safety concerns. A ‘One Health’ vaccine development approach, in which the same vaccine is co-developed for multiple susceptible species, is an attractive strategy for RVFV. Here, we utilized a replication-deficient chimpanzee adenovirus vaccine platform with an established human and livestock safety profile, ChAdOx1, to develop a vaccine for use against RVFV in both livestock and humans. We show that single-dose immunization with ChAdOx1-GnGc vaccine, encoding RVFV envelope glycoproteins, elicits high-titre RVFV-neutralizing antibody and provides solid protection against RVFV challenge in the most susceptible natural target species of the virus-sheep, goats and cattle. In addition we demonstrate induction of RVFV-neutralizing antibody by ChAdOx1-GnGc vaccination in dromedary camels, further illustrating the potency of replication-deficient chimpanzee adenovirus vaccine platforms. Thus, ChAdOx1-GnGc warrants evaluation in human clinical trials and could potentially address the unmet human and livestock vaccine needs. PMID:26847478

  15. Development of a Rift Valley fever real-time RT-PCR assay that can detect all three genome segments

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Outbreaks of Rift Valley fever in Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritania, and South Africa had devastating effects on livestock and human health. In addition, this disease is a food security issue for endemic countries. There is growing concern for the potential introduction of RVF into non-endemic countries...

  16. Water resource management and biodiversity conservation in the Eastern Rift Valley Lakes, Northern Tanzania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanda, P. Z.; Madulu, N. F.

    The Eastern Rift Valley Lakes of East Africa and their watersheds have gone through significant anthropogenic changes over years. Several land use pressures and overexploitations of natural resources have eroded the biological and physical systems that support those resources. The principal objective of this study was to undertake a comprehensive water resource management problem analysis in the Eastern Rift Valley Lakes so as to highlight the current state of knowledge on key environmental and biodiversity problems, institutional capacities and needs to conserve biodiversity and water resources in the respective lakes. Two stages were be involved in data collection. The first stage involved literature search in libraries and documentation centres held in various institutions. Second stage involved the main fieldwork, which aimed at collecting secondary information from regional and districts offices situated within the basins in question. Findings from this study show that trends in the growth of human population, expansion of cropland and increase in livestock population in the Eastern Rift Valley Lakes zone indicate rapid increase over the next few decades. The pressure of this rapidly increasing population on the available resources will be too great to sustain desirable livelihood in the area. Even at the current rate of population increase, water resource utilisation in and around most Rift Valley Lakes is not sustainable. The intensification of agriculture through the application of fertilisers and pesticides will lead to the soil and water pollution, as is already happening in Mang’ola and Mto wa Mbu where irrigated farming is practised. Although a number of studies have been conducted in the Eastern Rift Valley Lakes and Wetlands in the Northern Tanzania, there are still a lot of issues which have not studied adequately.

  17. The first australopithecine 2,500 kilometres west of the Rift Valley (Chad)

    PubMed

    Brunet, M; Beauvilain, A; Coppens, Y; Heintz, E; Moutaye, A H; Pilbeam, D

    1995-11-16

    The first sites with Pliocene and Pleistocene mammals west of the Rift Valley in Central Africa in northern Chad were reported in 1959 (ref. 1), and documented the presence of mixed savannah and woodland habitats. Further sites and a probable Homo erectus cranio-facial fragment were subsequently discovered. In 1993 a survey of Pliocene and Pleistocene formations in the Borkou-Ennedi-Tibesti Province of Chad (B.E.T.) led to the discovery of 17 new sites in the region of Bahr el Ghazal (classical Arabic for River of the Gazelles) near Koro Toro. One site, KT 12 (15 degrees 58'10"N, 18 degrees 52'46"E) yielded an australopithecine mandible associated with a fauna biochronologically estimated to be 3.0-3.5 Myr old. Australopithecine species described since 1925 are known from southern Africa and from sites spread along the eastern Rift Valley from Tanzania to Ethiopia (Fig. 1). This new find from Chad, which is most similar in morphology to Australopithecus afarensis, documents the presence of an early hominid a considerable distance, 2,500 km, west of the Rift Valley. PMID:7477344

  18. Complete Genome Sequence of Rift Valley Fever Virus Strain Lunyo.

    PubMed

    Lumley, Sarah; Horton, Daniel L; Marston, Denise A; Johnson, Nicholas; Ellis, Richard J; Fooks, Anthony R; Hewson, Roger

    2016-04-14

    Using next-generation sequencing technologies, the first complete genome sequence of Rift Valley fever virus strain Lunyo is reported here. Originally reported as an attenuated antigenic variant strain from Uganda, genomic sequence analysis shows that Lunyo clusters together with other Ugandan isolates.

  19. Complete Genome Sequence of Rift Valley Fever Virus Strain Lunyo

    PubMed Central

    Horton, Daniel L.; Marston, Denise A.; Johnson, Nicholas; Ellis, Richard J.; Fooks, Anthony R.; Hewson, Roger

    2016-01-01

    Using next-generation sequencing technologies, the first complete genome sequence of Rift Valley fever virus strain Lunyo is reported here. Originally reported as an attenuated antigenic variant strain from Uganda, genomic sequence analysis shows that Lunyo clusters together with other Ugandan isolates. PMID:27081121

  20. Comparing Two Profiles: The Amazing Size of the Rift Valleys.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Housepian, Jean

    1983-01-01

    Describes an activity for grade 7-9 students previously introduced to topographic maps and profile lines. Two profiles of equal scale are used to help students appreciate the tremendous size of mid-ocean rift valleys. Procedures and examples of completed profiles are provided. (JN)

  1. Forecast and Outbreak of Rift valley fever in Sudan, 2007

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Background Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks occur during heavy rainfall in various sub-Saharan countries including Kenya, Somalia, and Tanzania and more recently in Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Given the wide geographic and ecological range of RVF virus, it is necessary to monitor large areas for condit...

  2. Development of a sheep challenge model for Rift Valley fever

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever is a zoonotic disease responsible for severe outbreaks in ruminant livestock characterized by mass abortion and high mortality rates in younger animals. The lack of a fully licensed vaccine in the US has spurred increased demand for a protective vaccine. Thus, development of a reli...

  3. Development of a sheep challenge model for Rift Valley fever

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic disease that causes severe epizootic disease in ruminants, characterized by mass abortion and high mortality rates in younger animals. The development of a reliable challenge model is an important prerequisite for evaluation of existing and novel vaccines. A stu...

  4. A Recombinant Rift Valley Fever Virus Glycoprotein Subunit Vaccine Confers Full Protection against Rift Valley Fever Challenge in Sheep

    PubMed Central

    Faburay, Bonto; Wilson, William C.; Gaudreault, Natasha N.; Davis, A. Sally; Shivanna, Vinay; Bawa, Bhupinder; Sunwoo, Sun Young; Ma, Wenjun; Drolet, Barbara S.; Morozov, Igor; McVey, D. Scott; Richt, Juergen A.

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic pathogen causing disease outbreaks in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. The virus has great potential for transboundary spread due to the presence of competent vectors in non-endemic areas. There is currently no fully licensed vaccine suitable for use in livestock or humans outside endemic areas. Here we report the evaluation of the efficacy of a recombinant subunit vaccine based on the RVFV Gn and Gc glycoproteins. In a previous study, the vaccine elicited strong virus neutralizing antibody responses in sheep and was DIVA (differentiating naturally infected from vaccinated animals) compatible. In the current efficacy study, a group of sheep (n = 5) was vaccinated subcutaneously with the glycoprotein-based subunit vaccine candidate and then subjected to heterologous challenge with the virulent Kenya-128B-15 RVFV strain. The vaccine elicited high virus neutralizing antibody titers and conferred complete protection in all vaccinated sheep, as evidenced by prevention of viremia, fever and absence of RVFV-associated histopathological lesions. We conclude that the subunit vaccine platform represents a promising strategy for the prevention and control of RVFV infections in susceptible hosts. PMID:27296136

  5. A Recombinant Rift Valley Fever Virus Glycoprotein Subunit Vaccine Confers Full Protection against Rift Valley Fever Challenge in Sheep.

    PubMed

    Faburay, Bonto; Wilson, William C; Gaudreault, Natasha N; Davis, A Sally; Shivanna, Vinay; Bawa, Bhupinder; Sunwoo, Sun Young; Ma, Wenjun; Drolet, Barbara S; Morozov, Igor; McVey, D Scott; Richt, Juergen A

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic pathogen causing disease outbreaks in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. The virus has great potential for transboundary spread due to the presence of competent vectors in non-endemic areas. There is currently no fully licensed vaccine suitable for use in livestock or humans outside endemic areas. Here we report the evaluation of the efficacy of a recombinant subunit vaccine based on the RVFV Gn and Gc glycoproteins. In a previous study, the vaccine elicited strong virus neutralizing antibody responses in sheep and was DIVA (differentiating naturally infected from vaccinated animals) compatible. In the current efficacy study, a group of sheep (n = 5) was vaccinated subcutaneously with the glycoprotein-based subunit vaccine candidate and then subjected to heterologous challenge with the virulent Kenya-128B-15 RVFV strain. The vaccine elicited high virus neutralizing antibody titers and conferred complete protection in all vaccinated sheep, as evidenced by prevention of viremia, fever and absence of RVFV-associated histopathological lesions. We conclude that the subunit vaccine platform represents a promising strategy for the prevention and control of RVFV infections in susceptible hosts. PMID:27296136

  6. An epidemic of Rift Valley fever in Egypt. 1. Diagnosis of Rift Valley fever in man.

    PubMed

    Imam, I Z; Darwish, M A; El-Karamany, R

    1979-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus was isolated from 53 of 56 sera collected from patients with a clinical picture of dengue-like illness during the peak of the epidemic of RVF in Egypt in the autumn of 1977. RVF virus was also isolated from the throat washings of two patients and the faeces of four, all of whom were positive for virus isolation from the serum. All the isolates were identified by the complement fixation (CF) test. Serological diagnosis of RVF, using paired sera from 16 patients, was made by both the haemagglutination-inhibition (HI) and CF tests. HI antibodies were demonstrated in all the acute sera, whereas CF antibodies, which seem to appear later, were detected in only seven acute and twelve convalescent sera. A longer period than the 12 days in this study must be allowed to elapse between the taking of the paired sera for a definite serological diagnosis to be obtained, especially when CF antibodies are taken into account.

  7. A Spatial Analysis of Rift Valley Fever Virus Seropositivity in Domestic Ruminants in Tanzania

    PubMed Central

    Sindato, Calvin; Pfeiffer, Dirk U.; Karimuribo, Esron D.; Mboera, Leonard E. G.; Rweyemamu, Mark M.; Paweska, Janusz T.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an acute arthropod-borne viral zoonotic disease primarily occurring in Africa. Since RVF-like disease was reported in Tanzania in 1930, outbreaks of the disease have been reported mainly from the eastern ecosystem of the Great Rift Valley. This cross-sectional study was carried out to describe the variation in RVF virus (RVFV) seropositivity in domestic ruminants between selected villages in the eastern and western Rift Valley ecosystems in Tanzania, and identify potential risk factors. Three study villages were purposively selected from each of the two Rift Valley ecosystems. Serum samples from randomly selected domestic ruminants (n = 1,435) were tested for the presence of specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) and M (IgM), using RVF enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay methods. Mixed effects logistic regression modelling was used to investigate the association between potential risk factors and RVFV seropositivity. The overall RVFV seroprevalence (n = 1,435) in domestic ruminants was 25.8% and speciesspecific seroprevalence was 29.7%, 27.7% and 22.0% in sheep (n = 148), cattle (n = 756) and goats (n = 531), respectively. The odds of seropositivity were significantly higher in animals sampled from the villages in the eastern than those in the western Rift Valley ecosystem (OR = 1.88, CI: 1.41, 2.51; p<0.001), in animals sampled from villages with soils of good than those with soils of poor water holding capacity (OR = 1.97; 95% CI: 1.58, 3.02; p< 0.001), and in animals which had been introduced than in animals born within the herd (OR = 5.08, CI: 2.74, 9.44; p< 0.001). Compared with animals aged 1–2 years, those aged 3 and 4–5 years had 3.40 (CI: 2.49, 4.64; p< 0.001) and 3.31 (CI: 2.27, 4.82, p< 0.001) times the odds of seropositivity. The findings confirm exposure to RVFV in all the study villages, but with a higher prevalence in the study villages from the eastern Rift Valley ecosystem. PMID:26162089

  8. Mesozoic and early Tertiary rift tectonics in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bosworth, William

    1992-08-01

    A complex history of crustal extension occurred in east and central Africa during the Mesozoic and early Tertiary. Beginning in the Late Jurassic, this resulted in a large system of rifts, the Central African rift system, that spanned from central Sudan to southern Kenya. Late Jurassic rifting is best documented in the White and Blue Nile rifts of the Sudan, and records east-west extension in half-graben that were connected by large-scale shear zones and pull-apart basins. Early Cretaceous rifting re-activated Jurassic basins and spread to the large South Sudan rifts and Anza rift in Kenya. By the Late Cretaceous, the extension direction shifted to the NE-SW, and the presently observed large-scale rift geometry was established. In the early Tertiary, some Mesozoic basins were again reactivated, while other regions underwent wrench faulting and basin inversion. The large number of basins preserved in the Central African rift system can be used to construct an evolutionary model of continental rift tectonics. Early phases of extension at low strains produced alternating half-graben/accommodation zone geometries similar to those observed in most young and active continental rifts. At higher strains, some border faults were abandoned so that through-going, simpler active fault systems could evolve. This is interpreted as representing a switch from complex, oppositely dipping detachment structures, with strike dimensions of 50-150 km, to regional detachment structures that continue for hundreds of kilometers parallel to the rift. This change in the type of detachment was accompanied by a shift in the position of the subsidence away from the breakaway to a position focused further within the regional upper plate. Non-rotational, high angle, normal faulting dominates in the development of these late basin geometries. Deciphering similar rift basin histories from passive continental margins may, in many cases, exceed the limits of available reflection seismic data. East

  9. Detection of Rift Valley fever viral activity in Kenya by satellite remote sensing imagery

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Linthicum, Kenneth J.; Bailey, Charles L.; Davies, F. Glyn; Tucker, Compton J.

    1987-01-01

    Data from the advanced very high resolution radiometer on board the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's polar-orbiting meteorological satellites have been used to infer ecological parameters associated with Rift Valley fever (RVF) viral activity in Kenya. An indicator of potential viral activity was produced from satellite data for two different ecological regions in Kenya, where RVF is enzootic. The correlation between the satellite-derived green vegetation index and the ecological parameters associated with RVF virus suggested that satellite data may become a forecasting tool for RVF in Kenya and, perhaps, in other areas of sub-Saharan Africa.

  10. Rift Valley Fever Outbreak with East-Central African Virus Lineage in Mauritania, 2003

    PubMed Central

    Faye, Ousmane; Diallo, Mawlouth; Diop, Djibril; Bezeid, O. Elmamy; Bâ, Hampathé; Niang, Mbayame; Dia, Ibrahima; Mohamed, Sid Ahmed Ould; Ndiaye, Kader; Diallo, Diawo; Ly, Peinda Ogo; Diallo, Boubacar; Nabeth, Pierre; Simon, François; Lô, Baïdy

    2007-01-01

    In October 2003, 9 human cases of hemorrhagic fever were reported in 3 provinces of Mauritania, West Africa. Test results showed acute Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) infection, and a field investigation found recent circulation of RVFV with a prevalence rate of 25.5% (25/98) and 4 deaths among the 25 laboratory-confirmed case-patients. Immunoglobulin M against RVFV was found in 46% (25/54) of domestic animals. RVFV was also isolated from the mosquito species Culex poicilipes. Genetic comparison of virion segments indicated little variation among the strains isolated. However, phylogenetic studies clearly demonstrated that these strains belonged to the East-Central African lineage for all segments. To our knowledge, this is the first time viruses of this lineage have been observed in an outbreak in West Africa. Whether these strains were introduced or are endemic in West Africa remains to be determined. PMID:18214173

  11. Rift Valley fever outbreak with East-Central African virus lineage in Mauritania, 2003.

    PubMed

    Faye, Ousmane; Diallo, Mawlouth; Diop, Djibril; Bezeid, O Elmamy; Bâ, Hampathé; Niang, Mbayame; Dia, Ibrahima; Mohamed, Sid Ahmed Ould; Ndiaye, Kader; Diallo, Diawo; Ly, Peinda Ogo; Diallo, Boubacar; Nabeth, Pierre; Simon, François; Lô, Baïdy; Diop, Ousmane Madiagne

    2007-07-01

    In October 2003, 9 human cases of hemorrhagic fever were reported in 3 provinces of Mauritania, West Africa. Test results showed acute Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) infection, and a field investigation found recent circulation of RVFV with a prevalence rate of 25.5% (25/98) and 4 deaths among the 25 laboratory-confirmed case-patients. Immunoglobulin M against RVFV was found in 46% (25/54) of domestic animals. RVFV was also isolated from the mosquito species Culex poicilipes. Genetic comparison of virion segments indicated little variation among the strains isolated. However, phylogenetic studies clearly demonstrated that these strains belonged to the East-Central African lineage for all segments. To our knowledge, this is the first time viruses of this lineage have been observed in an outbreak in West Africa. Whether these strains were introduced or are endemic in West Africa remains to be determined.

  12. Single-cycle replicable Rift Valley fever virus mutants as safe vaccine candidates.

    PubMed

    Terasaki, Kaori; Tercero, Breanna R; Makino, Shinji

    2016-05-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arbovirus circulating between ruminants and mosquitoes to maintain its enzootic cycle. Humans are infected with RVFV through mosquito bites or direct contact with materials of infected animals. The virus causes Rift Valley fever (RVF), which was first recognized in the Great Rift Valley of Kenya in 1931. RVF is characterized by a febrile illness resulting in a high rate of abortions in ruminants and an acute febrile illness, followed by fatal hemorrhagic fever and encephalitis in humans. Initially, the virus was restricted to the eastern region of Africa, but the disease has now spread to southern and western Africa, as well as outside of the African continent, e.g., Madagascar, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. There is a serious concern that the virus may spread to other areas, such as North America and Europe. As vaccination is an effective tool to control RVFV epidemics, formalin-inactivated vaccines and live-attenuated RVFV vaccines have been used in endemic areas. The formalin-inactivated vaccines require boosters for effective protection, whereas the live-attenuated vaccines enable the induction of protective immunity by a single vaccination. However, the use of live-attenuated RVFV vaccines for large human populations having a varied health status is of concern, because of these vaccines' residual neuro-invasiveness and neurovirulence. Recently, novel vaccine candidates have been developed using replication-defective RVFV that can undergo only a single round of replication in infected cells. The single-cycle replicable RVFV does not cause systemic infection in immunized hosts, but enables the conferring of protective immunity. This review summarizes the properties of various RVFV vaccines and recent progress on the development of the single-cycle replicable RVFV vaccines. PMID:26022573

  13. Kantis: A new Australopithecus site on the shoulders of the Rift Valley near Nairobi, Kenya.

    PubMed

    Mbua, Emma; Kusaka, Soichiro; Kunimatsu, Yutaka; Geraads, Denis; Sawada, Yoshihiro; Brown, Francis H; Sakai, Tetsuya; Boisserie, Jean-Renaud; Saneyoshi, Mototaka; Omuombo, Christine; Muteti, Samuel; Hirata, Takafumi; Hayashida, Akira; Iwano, Hideki; Danhara, Tohru; Bobe, René; Jicha, Brian; Nakatsukasa, Masato

    2016-05-01

    Most Plio-Pleistocene sites in the Gregory Rift Valley that have yielded abundant fossil hominins lie on the Rift Valley floor. Here we report a new Pliocene site, Kantis, on the shoulder of the Gregory Rift Valley, which extends the geographical range of Australopithecus afarensis to the highlands of Kenya. This species, known from sites in Ethiopia, Tanzania, and possibly Kenya, is believed to be adapted to a wide spectrum of habitats, from open grassland to woodland. The Kantis fauna is generally similar to that reported from other contemporaneous A. afarensis sites on the Rift Valley floor. However, its faunal composition and stable carbon isotopic data from dental enamel suggest a stronger C4 environment than that present at those sites. Although the Gregory Rift Valley has been the focus of paleontologists' attention for many years, surveys of the Rift shoulder may provide new perspective on African Pliocene mammal and hominin evolution. PMID:27178456

  14. Kantis: A new Australopithecus site on the shoulders of the Rift Valley near Nairobi, Kenya.

    PubMed

    Mbua, Emma; Kusaka, Soichiro; Kunimatsu, Yutaka; Geraads, Denis; Sawada, Yoshihiro; Brown, Francis H; Sakai, Tetsuya; Boisserie, Jean-Renaud; Saneyoshi, Mototaka; Omuombo, Christine; Muteti, Samuel; Hirata, Takafumi; Hayashida, Akira; Iwano, Hideki; Danhara, Tohru; Bobe, René; Jicha, Brian; Nakatsukasa, Masato

    2016-05-01

    Most Plio-Pleistocene sites in the Gregory Rift Valley that have yielded abundant fossil hominins lie on the Rift Valley floor. Here we report a new Pliocene site, Kantis, on the shoulder of the Gregory Rift Valley, which extends the geographical range of Australopithecus afarensis to the highlands of Kenya. This species, known from sites in Ethiopia, Tanzania, and possibly Kenya, is believed to be adapted to a wide spectrum of habitats, from open grassland to woodland. The Kantis fauna is generally similar to that reported from other contemporaneous A. afarensis sites on the Rift Valley floor. However, its faunal composition and stable carbon isotopic data from dental enamel suggest a stronger C4 environment than that present at those sites. Although the Gregory Rift Valley has been the focus of paleontologists' attention for many years, surveys of the Rift shoulder may provide new perspective on African Pliocene mammal and hominin evolution.

  15. Rift Valley fever virus (Bunyaviridae: Phlebovirus): an update on pathogenesis, molecular epidemiology, vectors, diagnostics and prevention

    PubMed Central

    Pepin, Michel; Bouloy, Michèle; Bird, Brian H.; Kemp, Alan; Paweska, Janusz

    2010-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is an arbovirus in the Bunyaviridae family that, from phylogenetic analysis, appears to have first emerged in the mid-19th century and was only identified at the begininning of the 1930s in the Rift Valley region of Kenya. Despite being an arbovirus with a relatively simple but temporally and geographically stable genome, this zoonotic virus has already demonstrated a real capacity for emerging in new territories, as exemplified by the outbreaks in Egypt (1977), Western Africa (1988) and the Arabian Peninsula (2000), or for re-emerging after long periods of silence as observed very recently in Kenya and South Africa. The presence of competent vectors in countries previously free of RVF, the high viral titres in viraemic animals and the global changes in climate, travel and trade all contribute to make this virus a threat that must not be neglected as the consequences of RVF are dramatic, both for human and animal health. In this review, we present the latest advances in RVF virus research. In spite of this renewed interest, aspects of the epidemiology of RVF virus are still not fully understood and safe, effective vaccines are still not freely available for protecting humans and livestock against the dramatic consequences of this virus. PMID:21188836

  16. DoD-GEIS Rift Valley Fever Monitoring and Prediction System as a Tool for Defense and US Diplomacy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anyamba, Assaf; Tucker, Compton J.; Linthicum, Kenneth J.; Witt, Clara J.; Gaydos, Joel C.; Russell, Kevin L.

    2011-01-01

    Over the last 10 years the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center's Global Emerging Infections Surveillance and Response System (GEIS) partnering with NASA'S Goddard Space Flight Center and USDA's USDA-Center for Medical, Agricultural & Veterinary Entomology established and have operated the Rift Valley fever Monitoring and Prediction System to monitor, predict and assess the risk of Rift Valley fever outbreaks and other vector-borne diseases over Africa and the Middle East. This system is built on legacy DoD basic research conducted by Walter Reed Army Institute of Research overseas laboratory (US Army Medical Research Unit-Kenya) and the operational satellite environmental monitoring by NASA GSFC. Over the last 10 years of operation the system has predicted outbreaks of Rift Valley fever in the Horn of Africa, Sudan, South Africa and Mauritania. The ability to predict an outbreak several months before it occurs provides early warning to protect deployed forces, enhance public health in concerned countries and is a valuable tool use.d by the State Department in US Diplomacy. At the international level the system has been used by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAD) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to support their monitoring, surveillance and response programs in the livestock sector and human health. This project is a successful testament of leveraging resources of different federal agencies to achieve objectives of force health protection, health and diplomacy.

  17. Isotopic Evidence for Neogene Hominid Paleoenvironments in the Kenya Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kingston, John D.; Marino, Bruno D.; Hill, Andrew

    1994-05-01

    Bipedality, the definitive characteristic of the earliest hominids, has been regarded as an adaptive response to a transition from forested to more-open habitats in East Africa sometime between 12 million and 5 million years ago. Analyses of the stable carbon isotopic composition (δ13C) of paleosol carbonate and organic matter from the Tugen Hills succession in Kenya indicate that a heterogeneous environment with a mix of C3 and C4 plants has persisted for the last 15.5 million years. Open grasslands at no time dominated this portion of the rift valley. The observed δ13C values offer no evidence for a shift from more-closed C3 environments to C4 grassland habitats. If hominids evolved in East Africa during the Late Miocene, they did so in an ecologically diverse setting.

  18. Isotopic evidence for neogene hominid paleoenvironments in the Kenya Rift Valley

    SciTech Connect

    Kingston, J.D.; Hill, A. ); Marino, B.D. )

    1994-05-13

    Bipedality, the definitive characteristic of the earliest hominids, has been regarded as an adaptive response to a transition from forested to more-open habitats in East Africa sometime between 12 million and 5 million years ago. Analyses of the stable carbon isotopic composition ([delta][sup 13]C) of paleosol carbonate and organic matter from the Tugen Hills succession in Kenya indicate that a heterogeneous environment with a mix of C3 and C4 plants has persisted for the last 15.5 million years. Open grasslands at no time dominated this portion of the rift valley. The observed [delta][sup 13]C values offer no evidence for a shift from more-closed C3 environments to C4 grasslands habitats. If hominids evolved in East Africa during the Late Miocene, they did so in an ecologically diverse setting.

  19. Towards a safe, effective vaccine for Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Labeaud, Desiree

    2010-11-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an important animal and human threat and leads to longstanding morbidity and mortality in susceptible hosts. Since no therapies currently exist to treat Rift Valley fever, it remains a public and animal health priority to develop safe, effective RVFV vaccines (whether for animals, humans, or both) that provide long-term protective immunity. In the evaluated article, Bhardwaj and colleagues describe the creation and testing of two successful vaccine strategies against RVFV, a DNA plasmid vaccine expressing Gn coupled to C3d, and an alpha-virus replicon vaccine expressing Gn protein. Both vaccines elicited strong neutralizing antibody responses, prevented morbidity and mortality in RVFV-challenged mice, and enabled protection of naive mice via passive antibody transfer from vaccinated mice. Both DNA and replicon RVFV vaccines have previously been shown to protect against RVFV challenge, but these results allow for direct comparison of the two methods and evaluation of a combined prime-boost method. The results also highlight the specific humoral and cell-mediated immune responses to vaccination.

  20. An epidemiological model of Rift Valley fever with spatial dynamics.

    PubMed

    Niu, Tianchan; Gaff, Holly D; Papelis, Yiannis E; Hartley, David M

    2012-01-01

    As a category A agent in the Center for Disease Control bioterrorism list, Rift Valley fever (RVF) is considered a major threat to the United States (USA). Should the pathogen be intentionally or unintentionally introduced to the continental USA, there is tremendous potential for economic damages due to loss of livestock, trade restrictions, and subsequent food supply chain disruptions. We have incorporated the effects of space into a mathematical model of RVF in order to study the dynamics of the pathogen spread as affected by the movement of humans, livestock, and mosquitoes. The model accounts for the horizontal transmission of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) between two mosquito and one livestock species, and mother-to-offspring transmission of virus in one of the mosquito species. Space effects are introduced by dividing geographic space into smaller patches and considering the patch-to-patch movement of species. For each patch, a system of ordinary differential equations models fractions of populations susceptible to, incubating, infectious with, or immune to RVFV. The main contribution of this work is a methodology for analyzing the likelihood of pathogen establishment should an introduction occur into an area devoid of RVF. Examples are provided for general and specific cases to illustrate the methodology.

  1. Development and evaluation of one-step rRT-PCR and immunohistochemical methods for detection of Rift Valley fever virus in biosafety level 2 diagnostic laboratories

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a zoonotic insect transmitted virus endemic to Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Infection causes abortions and high mortality in newborn ruminants with an overall human infection rate of <1%. The potential of RVFV as a bioterrorism agent and/or being accidentally i...

  2. Blood Meal Analysis of and Virus Detection in Mosquitoes Collected during a Rift Valley fever Epizootic/Epidemic: Implications for epidemic disease transmission dynamics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonosis of domestic ruminants in Africa. Bloodfed mosquitoes collected during the 2006-2007 RVF outbreak in Kenya were analyzed to determine the virus infection status and animal source of the bloodmeals. Bloodmeals from individual mosquito abdomens were screened for v...

  3. Aedes Mosquito Saliva Modulates Rift Valley Fever Virus Pathogenicity

    PubMed Central

    Le Coupanec, Alain; Babin, Divya; Fiette, Laurence; Jouvion, Grégory; Ave, Patrick; Misse, Dorothee; Bouloy, Michèle; Choumet, Valerie

    2013-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a severe mosquito-borne disease affecting humans and domestic ruminants. Mosquito saliva contains compounds that counteract the hemostatic, inflammatory, and immune responses of the host. Modulation of these defensive responses may facilitate virus infection. Indeed, Aedes mosquito saliva played a crucial role in the vector's capacity to effectively transfer arboviruses such as the Cache Valley and West Nile viruses. The role of mosquito saliva in the transmission of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) has not been investigated. Objective Using a murine model, we explored the potential for mosquitoes to impact the course of RVF disease by determining whether differences in pathogenesis occurred in the presence or absence of mosquito saliva and salivary gland extract. Methods C57BL/6NRJ male mice were infected with the ZH548 strain of RVFV via intraperitoneal or intradermal route, or via bites from RVFV-exposed mosquitoes. The virus titers in mosquitoes and mouse organs were determined by plaque assays. Findings After intraperitoneal injection, RVFV infection primarily resulted in liver damage. In contrast, RVFV infection via intradermal injection caused both liver and neurological symptoms and this route best mimicked the natural infection by mosquitoes. Co-injections of RVFV with salivary gland extract or saliva via intradermal route increased the mortality rates of mice, as well as the virus titers measured in several organs and in the blood. Furthermore, the blood cell counts of infected mice were altered compared to those of uninfected mice. Interpretation Different routes of infection determine the pattern in which the virus spreads and the organs it targets. Aedes saliva significantly increases the pathogenicity of RVFV. PMID:23785528

  4. Rift Valley fever virus MP-12 vaccine encoding Toscana virus NSs retains neuroinvasiveness in mice.

    PubMed

    Indran, Sabarish V; Lihoradova, Olga A; Phoenix, Inaia; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Kalveram, Birte; Head, Jennifer A; Tigabu, Bersabeh; Smith, Jennifer K; Zhang, Lihong; Juelich, Terry L; Gong, Bin; Freiberg, Alexander N; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2013-07-01

    Rift Valley fever is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease endemic to sub-Saharan Africa. Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV; genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae) causes high rates of abortion and fetal malformation in pregnant ruminants, and haemorrhagic fever, neurological disorders or blindness in humans. The MP-12 strain is a highly efficacious and safe live-attenuated vaccine candidate for both humans and ruminants. However, MP-12 lacks a marker to differentiate infected from vaccinated animals. In this study, we originally aimed to characterize the efficacy of a recombinant RVFV MP-12 strain encoding Toscana virus (TOSV) NSs gene in place of MP-12 NSs (rMP12-TOSNSs). TOSV NSs promotes the degradation of dsRNA-dependent protein kinase (PKR) and inhibits interferon-β gene up-regulation without suppressing host general transcription. Unexpectedly, rMP12-TOSNSs increased death in vaccinated outbred mice and inbred BALB/c or C57BL/6 mice. Immunohistochemistry showed diffusely positive viral antigens in the thalamus, hypothalamus and brainstem, including the medulla. No viral antigens were detected in spleen or liver, which is similar to the antigen distribution of moribund mice infected with MP-12. These results suggest that rMP12-TOSNSs retains neuroinvasiveness in mice. Our findings demonstrate that rMP12-TOSNSs causes neuroinvasion without any hepatic disease and will be useful for studying the neuroinvasion mechanism of RVFV and TOSV.

  5. The Rift Valley Fever virus protein NSm and putative cellular protein interactions

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever is an infectious viral disease and an emerging problem in many countries of Africa and on the Arabian Peninsula. The causative virus is predominantly transmitted by mosquitoes and high mortality and abortion rates characterize outbreaks in animals while symptoms ranging from mild to life-threatening encephalitis and hemorrhagic fever are noticed among infected humans. For a better prevention and treatment of the infection, an increased knowledge of the infectious process of the virus is required. The focus of this work was to identify protein-protein interactions between the non-structural protein (NSm), encoded by the M-segment of the virus, and host cell proteins. This study was initiated by screening approximately 26 million cDNA clones of a mouse embryonic cDNA library for interactions with the NSm protein using a yeast two-hybrid system. We have identified nine murine proteins that interact with NSm protein of Rift Valley Fever virus, and the putative protein-protein interactions were confirmed by growth selection procedures and β-gal activity measurements. Our results suggest that the cleavage and polyadenylation specificity factor subunit 2 (Cpsf2), the peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerase (cyclophilin)-like 2 protein (Ppil2), and the synaptosome-associated protein of 25 kDa (SNAP-25) are the most promising targets for the NSm protein of the virus during an infection. PMID:22838834

  6. The Rift Valley of African Plate in Elasto-Plastic Creeping over Magma Motion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, Shigehisa

    2016-04-01

    This is a brief note to a problem on the Rift Valley in the eastern Africa. It is said that this valley was formed in an age 20,000,000 years before present though the valley is yet continuing to move eastward at an annual rate of about 5 cm/year in a geographical trend. Adding to some of the scientists tell that the separation threat of the easternAfrica from the mother land of the Africa under the effect of African crust motion over the magma. However, it is now geological understanding that the land of the Africa has been kept its basic coastal configulation in geographic pattern since the time more than 20,000,000 years before present. Sothat, it is hard to consider the above noted African land separation by part could be in the next age in a time scale of 20,000,000 years. As far as, we concern the geographic data obtaoned by the ground based survey of the African typical mountain peaks, the highest mountain peak 5885m (in 1980) is for Kilimanjaro, Kibo Peak though one of the scientific almanacs tells us its peak height as 5890m (in 2009). As for the Mount Kenia, the peak height is as 5199m (in 1980) and 5200m(in 2009). At a glance, it looks to be a trend in altimetry of the African typical mountain. Now, what trends are noted for the peak heights could be taken to suggesting the geological activity on the earth surface to maintain in a spherical shape approximately on the orbit around the Sun. In these several ten years, the digitizing of the data has been promoted even for the topographic patterns on the earth though its time scaling is extremely short comparing to the geological time scaling. Now, it should be found what is effective to monitor any trends of the African crust in motion as well as variations of the mountain peaks.

  7. US-Africa collaborative research on incipient continental rift zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atekwana, E. A.

    2007-12-01

    Since 1999, we have been conducting research in Botswana in collaboration with colleagues at the University of Botswana (UB). Recently, we have expanded our research activities to include the University of Zambia (UNZA). The goal of the collaborative efforts center on investigating geologic processes operating during the initial stages of continental extension. During student training, US students partner with peers from UB and UNZA to conduct field-based research within a multi-disciplinary framework focused on investigating the interplay between neotectonics and surficial processes due to rifting. The student projects are designed to: 1) assess the role of pre-existing structures on rift basin development; 2) determine fault kinematics and direction of rift extension; 3) characterize the geometry of the basins; 4) assess current models for fault growth and propagation and linkage to form border faults; 5) investigate environmental change information preserved in rift basin sediments; 6) determine how magma below the rift basin affects surface water chemical properties; and 7) develop tectonic and geologic models for the evolution of rift basins during the incipient stages of continental extension. Our goal is to provide is to improve research and education in developing countries while providing talented and motivated US students with hands-on field research experience in near surface geophysical surveying, field geologic mapping, GPS mapping, and geochemical and hydrogeologic techniques necessary for addressing basic research questions in the geosciences, as well as resources exploration (e.g., hydrocarbon, water resources, mineral, geothermal, etc.). Our US students acquire an enriching cultural experience, make personal contacts, and build relationships that will form the core of future international research collaborations. At the same time, project activities introduce the African students to state-of the art geophysical equipment and research methodologies

  8. Concentration of Rift Valley fever and Chikungunya viruses by precipitation.

    PubMed

    Klein, F; Mahlandt, B G; Cockey, R R; Lincoln, R E

    1970-09-01

    Simple and efficient methods for concentrating Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus and chikungunya (CHIK) virus are described. Ammonium sulfate, potassium sulfate, or alcohol was used as a precipitating agent and the precipitate was resuspended to volumes suitable for further processing and purification. The methods permitted concentration of live RVF virus and CHIK virus about 100-fold with negligible losses of virus. RVF virus retained a high level of infectivity with potassium aluminum sulfate and alcohol, but CHIK virus retained a higher infectivity level with ammonium sulfate than with potassium aluminum sulfate. The data indicate that serum plays an important role in the concentration of both viruses, at least when the sulfate methods are used.

  9. The Risk of Nosocomial Transmission of Rift Valley Fever

    PubMed Central

    Al-Hamdan, Nasser A.; Panackal, Anil A.; Al Bassam, Tami H.; Alrabea, Abdullah; Al Hazmi, Mohammed; Al Mazroa, Yagoub; Al Jefri, Mohammed; Khan, Ali S.; Ksiazek, Thomas G.

    2015-01-01

    In 2000, we investigated the Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreak on the Arabian Peninsula—the first outside Africa—and the risk of nosocomial transmission. In a cross-sectional design, during the peak of the epidemic at its epicenter, we found four (0.6%) of 703 healthcare workers (HCWs) IgM seropositive but all with only community-associated exposures. Standard precautions are sufficient for HCWs exposed to known RVF patients, in contrast to other viral hemorrhagic fevers (VHF) such as Ebola virus disease (EVD) in which the route of transmission differs. Suspected VHF in which the etiology is uncertain should be initially managed with the most cautious infection control measures. PMID:26694834

  10. [Severe hemorrhagic forms of Rift Valley fever: about 5 cases].

    PubMed

    Salem, Mohamed Lemine Ould; Baba, Sidi El Wafi Ould; Fall-Malick, Fatimetou Zahra; Boushab, Boushab Mohamed; Ghaber, Sidi Mohamed; Mokhtar, Abdelwedoud

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an arbovirus caused by an RNA virus belonging to family Bunyaviridae (genus phlebovirus). It is a zoonosis that primarily affects animals but it also has the capacity to infect humans, either by handling meat, runts of sick animals or, indirectly, by the bite of infected mosquitoes (Aedes sp, Anopheles sp, Culex sp). In most cases, RVF infection in humans is asymptomatic, but it can also manifest as moderate febrile syndrome with a favorable outcome. However, some patients may develop hemorrhagic syndrome and/or neurological damages with a fatal evolution. We present a case study of the development of 5 patients with RVF associated with hemorrhagic fever syndrome admitted to the internal medicine department at National Hospital Center in Nouakchott (Mauritania), in October 2015. The outcome was favorable for two of the five patients. The other 3 died, two of hemorrhagic shock and one of septic shock. PMID:27642413

  11. Rift Valley Fever Outbreaks in Mauritania and Related Environmental Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Caminade, Cyril; Ndione, Jacques A.; Diallo, Mawlouth; MacLeod, Dave A.; Faye, Ousmane; Ba, Yamar; Dia, Ibrahima; Morse, Andrew P.

    2014-01-01

    Four large outbreaks of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) occurred in Mauritania in 1998, 2003, 2010 and 2012 which caused lots of animal and several human deaths. We investigated rainfall and vegetation conditions that might have impacted on RVF transmission over the affected regions. Our results corroborate that RVF transmission generally occurs during the months of September and October in Mauritania, similarly to Senegal. The four outbreaks were preceded by a rainless period lasting at least a week followed by heavy precipitation that took place during the second half of the rainy season. First human infections were generally reported three to five weeks later. By bridging the gap between meteorological forecasting centers and veterinary services, an early warning system might be developed in Senegal and Mauritania to warn decision makers and health services about the upcoming RVF risk. PMID:24413703

  12. [Fatal haemorrhagic rift valley fever: a case at Madagascar].

    PubMed

    Raveloson, N E; Ramorasata, J C; Rasolofohanitrininosy, R; Rakotoarivony, S T; Andrianjatovo, J J; Sztark, F

    2010-04-01

    Rift valley fever (RVF) is a viral zoonosis that can also infect humans. Haemorrhagic RVF is a severe potentially fatal form of the disease. Although haemorrhagic RVF accounts for only 1% of all infections, death occurs in up to 5% of cases. The purpose of this report is describe a severe case of haemorrhagic RVF observed in a 22-year-old cattle breeder admitted to the intensive care units of the Joseph Raseta Befelatanana University Hospitals in Antananarivo. The disease presented as an infectious syndrome but hemorrhagic manifestations developed early (day 2). They consisted of diffuse haemorrhage events (haemorrhagic vomit, gingival haemorrhage, skin haemorrhage, urinary haemorrhage, and haemorrhage on the venous puncture site). In spite of intensive care, haemorrhagic complications lead to death on day 4 of clinical evolution. Laboratory findings demonstrated alteration in liver function and coagulation disturbances. Multiple organ failure was also observed.

  13. Rift Valley fever during rainy seasons, Madagascar, 2008 and 2009.

    PubMed

    Andriamandimby, Soa Fy; Randrianarivo-Solofoniaina, Armand Eugène; Jeanmaire, Elisabeth M; Ravololomanana, Lisette; Razafimanantsoa, Lanto Tiana; Rakotojoelinandrasana, Tsanta; Razainirina, Josette; Hoffmann, Jonathan; Ravalohery, Jean-Pierre; Rafisandratantsoa, Jean-Théophile; Rollin, Pierre E; Reynes, Jean-Marc

    2010-06-01

    During 2 successive rainy seasons, January 2008 through May 2008 and November 2008 through March 2009, Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) caused outbreaks in Madagascar. Human and animal infections were confirmed on the northern and southern coasts and in the central highlands. Analysis of partial sequences from RVFV strains showed that all were similar to the strains circulating in Kenya during 2006-2007. A national cross-sectional serologic survey among slaughterhouse workers at high risk showed that RVFV circulation during the 2008 outbreaks included all of the Malagasy regions and that the virus has circulated in at least 92 of Madagascar's 111 districts. To better predict and respond to RVF outbreaks in Madagascar, further epidemiologic studies are needed, such as RVFV complete genome analysis, ruminant movement mapping, and surveillance implementation.

  14. Reassortment and distinct evolutionary dynamics of Rift Valley Fever virus genomic segments

    PubMed Central

    Freire, Caio C. M.; Iamarino, Atila; Soumaré, Peinda O. Ly; Faye, Ousmane; Sall, Amadou A.; Zanotto, Paolo M. A.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV) is a member of Bunyaviridae family that causes a febrile disease affecting mainly ruminants and occasionally humans in Africa, with symptoms that range from mid to severe. RVFV has a tri-segmented ssRNA genome that permits reassortment and could generate more virulent strains. In this study, we reveal the importance of reassortment for RVFV evolution using viral gene genealogy inference and phylodynamics. We uncovered seven events of reassortment that originated RVFV lineages with discordant origins among segments. Moreover, we also found that despite similar selection regimens, the three segments have distinct evolutionary dynamics; the longer segment L evolves at a significant lower rate. Episodes of discordance between population size estimates per segment also coincided with reassortment dating. Our results show that RVFV segments are decoupled enough to have distinct demographic histories and to evolve under different molecular rates. PMID:26100494

  15. Modelling Rift Valley fever (RVF) disease vector habitats using active and passive remote sensing systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ambrosia, Vincent G.; Linthicum, K. G.; Bailey, C. L.; Sebesta, P.

    1989-01-01

    The NASA Ames Ecosystem Science and Technology Branch and the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases are conducting research to detect Rift Valley fever (RVF) vector habitats in eastern Africa using active and passive remote-sensing. The normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) calculated from Landsat TM and SPOT data is used to characterize the vegetation common to the Aedes mosquito. Relationships have been found between the highest NDVI and the 'dambo' habitat areas near Riuru, Kenya on both wet and dry data. High NDVI values, when combined with the vegetation classifications, are clearly related to the areas of vector habitats. SAR data have been proposed for use during the rainy season when optical systems are of minimal use and the short frequency and duration of the optimum RVF mosquito habitat conditions necessitate rapid evaluation of the vegetation/moisture conditions; only then can disease potential be stemmed and eradication efforts initiated.

  16. Reassortment and distinct evolutionary dynamics of Rift Valley Fever virus genomic segments.

    PubMed

    Freire, Caio C M; Iamarino, Atila; Soumaré, Peinda O Ly; Faye, Ousmane; Sall, Amadou A; Zanotto, Paolo M A

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV) is a member of Bunyaviridae family that causes a febrile disease affecting mainly ruminants and occasionally humans in Africa, with symptoms that range from mid to severe. RVFV has a tri-segmented ssRNA genome that permits reassortment and could generate more virulent strains. In this study, we reveal the importance of reassortment for RVFV evolution using viral gene genealogy inference and phylodynamics. We uncovered seven events of reassortment that originated RVFV lineages with discordant origins among segments. Moreover, we also found that despite similar selection regimens, the three segments have distinct evolutionary dynamics; the longer segment L evolves at a significant lower rate. Episodes of discordance between population size estimates per segment also coincided with reassortment dating. Our results show that RVFV segments are decoupled enough to have distinct demographic histories and to evolve under different molecular rates. PMID:26100494

  17. Rift Valley Fever Risk Map Model and Seroprevalence in Selected Wild Ungulates and Camels from Kenya

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Britch, Seth C.; Binepal, Yatinder S.; Ruder, Mark G.; Kariithi, Henry M.; Linthicum, Kenneth J.; Anyamba, Assaf; Small, Jennifer L.; Tucker, Compton J.; Ateya, Leonard O.; Oriko, Abuu A.; Gacheru, Stephen; Wilson, William C.

    2013-01-01

    Since the first isolation of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in the 1930s, there have been multiple epizootics and epidemics in animals and humans in sub-Saharan Africa. Prospective climate-based models have recently been developed that flag areas at risk of RVFV transmission in endemic regions based on key environmental indicators that precede Rift Valley fever (RVF) epizootics and epidemics. Although the timing and locations of human case data from the 2006-2007 RVF outbreak in Kenya have been compared to risk zones flagged by the model, seroprevalence of RVF antibodies in wildlife has not yet been analyzed in light of temporal and spatial predictions of RVF activity. Primarily wild ungulate serum samples from periods before, during, and after the 2006-2007 RVF epizootic were analyzed for the presence of RVFV IgM and/or IgG antibody. Results show an increase in RVF seropositivity from samples collected in 2007 (31.8%), compared to antibody prevalence observed from 2000-2006 (3.3%). After the epizootic, average RVF seropositivity diminished to 5% in samples collected from 2008-2009. Overlaying maps of modeled RVF risk assessments with sampling locations indicated positive RVF serology in several species of wild ungulate in or near areas flagged as being at risk for RVF. Our results establish the need to continue and expand sero-surveillance of wildlife species Kenya and elsewhere in the Horn of Africa to further calibrate and improve the RVF risk model, and better understand the dynamics of RVFV transmission.

  18. Climate Change Affects the East African Rift Valley Lakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Reilly, C. M.; Plisnier, P.; Cohen, A. S.

    2004-12-01

    Over the last 100 years, air temperatures in eastern African have been warming consistent with the global average temperature increase. This has led to warmer water temperatures in the East African Rift Valley lakes, increasing the stability of the water column. Subsequently, there has been a reduction in the upwelling of deep nutrient-rich waters that are the primary source of nutrients for most of these lakes. There were decreases in surface water N and P and increases in the Si:P ratio over the past 70 years for Lakes Malawi, Tanganyika, Edward, and Albert. The lower nutrient concentrations in the surface waters were associated with reduced algal biomass and increased water clarity. The consistent, regional-scale changes among these lakes provide strong evidence that climate warming may be having a large negative affect on these unique tropical lakes. A decrease in primary productivity of 20% has been indicated for Lake Tanganyika, which would be associated with a 30% decrease in fisheries yields. The human implications of such subtle, but progressive, environmental changes are potentially dire in this densely populated region of the world, where these large lakes are an important nutritional and economic resource.

  19. An epizootic of Rift Valley fever in Egypt in 1997.

    PubMed

    Abd el-Rahim, I H; Abd el-Hakim, U; Hussein, M

    1999-12-01

    An epizootic of Rift Valley fever (RVF) occurred in Egypt between April and August 1997. The signs among infected cattle and sheep were high fever, icterus, bloody diarrhoea and abortion. Aborted sheep foetuses and sera from the affected herds were collected in the Aswan and Assiut Provinces, Upper Egypt, for virological and serological examination. A cytopathic effect was detected in Vero cell cultures 48 h after inoculation with the foetal liver and spleen suspensions. The same suspensions caused paralysis and mortalities two to three days post intracerebral injection in mice. The isolated virus was identified using an agar gel precipitation test (AGPT) and a direct fluorescent antibody technique. Serological examination revealed that all tested sheep (57) and cattle (93) gave positive results to serological tests, using a complement fixation (CF), serum neutralisation (SN) and indirect immunofluorescence assay; while only 48 (84.2%) out of 57 sheep sera and 69 (74.2%) out of 93 cattle sera gave positive results using an AGPT. Titration of the serum samples indicated that SN is more sensitive than CF. Importation of infected ruminants, especially camels from the Sudan, is the principal source of infection. Aswan, the nearest Egyptian province to the Sudan, is the focus of RVF virus infection in Egypt. As a result of high insect populations, the epizootics of RVF have usually occurred during the summer in Egypt. Reoccurrence of epizootics from time to time indicates failure of the applied RVF vaccination programme in Egypt.

  20. Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection in Golden Syrian Hamsters

    PubMed Central

    Scharton, Dionna; Van Wettere, Arnaud J.; Bailey, Kevin W.; Vest, Zachary; Westover, Jonna B.; Siddharthan, Venkatraman; Gowen, Brian B.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a formidable pathogen that causes severe disease and abortion in a variety of livestock species and a range of disease in humans that includes hemorrhagic fever, fulminant hepatitis, encephalitis and blindness. The natural transmission cycle involves mosquito vectors, but exposure can also occur through contact with infected fluids and tissues. The lack of approved antiviral therapies and vaccines for human use underlies the importance of small animal models for proof-of-concept efficacy studies. Several mouse and rat models of RVFV infection have been well characterized and provide useful systems for the study of certain aspects of pathogenesis, as well as antiviral drug and vaccine development. However, certain host-directed therapeutics may not act on mouse or rat pathways. Here, we describe the natural history of disease in golden Syrian hamsters challenged subcutaneously with the pathogenic ZH501 strain of RVFV. Peracute disease resulted in rapid lethality within 2 to 3 days of RVFV challenge. High titer viremia and substantial viral loads were observed in most tissues examined; however, histopathology and immunostaining for RVFV antigen were largely restricted to the liver. Acute hepatocellular necrosis associated with a strong presence of viral antigen in the hepatocytes indicates that fulminant hepatitis is the likely cause of mortality. Further studies to assess the susceptibility and disease progression following respiratory route exposure are warranted. The use of the hamsters to model RVFV infection is suitable for early stage antiviral drug and vaccine development studies. PMID:25607955

  1. [Rift Valley Fever: veterinary aspects and impact for human health].

    PubMed

    Cêtre-Sossah, C; Albina, E

    2009-08-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an arboviral zoonosis affecting a wide range of animal species as well as humans. Clinical incidence in domestic ruminants is high with infection causing abortions in pregnant animals and high mortality rates in newborns. In humans, clinical disease appears in about 50% of infected individuals. Human illness is characterized by dengue-like symptoms with severe complications including encephalitis, retinitis, hemorrhagic fever and death occurring in 1 to 3% of cases. During epidemic outbreaks, transmission between animals or from animals to humans is mainly by direct contact with infected biological material. Under these conditions, mosquito transmission probably plays a greater role in maintaining the enzootic cycle and initiating epizootic and epidemic outbreaks during the periods of heavy rainfall. The last epidemic outbreak of RVF in Kenya, Somalia, Tanzania and Sudan in 2006-2007 killed more than 4,000 ruminants and 600 humans. After confirmed diagnosis of one human case in 2007 in Comoros, an epidemiological survey was carried out in ruminant livestock in Mayotte. Results indicated that the RVF virus has been circulating on the island since 2005. In addition, serum samples collected from patients presenting dengue-like symptoms confirmed approximately 10 cases of human infection in 2007-2008. These results suggest low-level circulation of the RVF virus in Mayotte with weak impact on human and animal health. An assessment of future risk for the island is presented.

  2. Rift Valley fever epizootic in the central highlands of Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Morvan, J; Rollin, P E; Laventure, S; Rakotoarivony, I; Roux, J

    1992-01-01

    Between February and April 1991, unusual numbers of bovine abortion around Antananarivo (central highlands, Madagascar) were reported by official veterinary services. Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus isolations were made from sixteen aborted foetuses and one dead calf in different foci. Using monoclonal antibodies, the isolated viruses were found to be different from the 1979 RVF strains isolated in Madagascar from mosquitoes and human laboratory infection, and closer to African RVF strains. In a bovine population--previously characterized by a negative or very low RVF antibody prevalence--a high prevalence of IgM antibodies (264/994: 26.5% positive) was revealed; the IgM prevalence in recently aborting females varied from 40 to 91%. Among 994 human sera tested by IgG-IFA (immunofluorescent antibody assay) and IgM ELISA, 8.2% and 4.5%, respectively, proved positive. A total of 11,371 mosquitoes (61% Culex antennatus) were collected in the epizootic areas and tested without any virus isolation. Extensive studies were conducted to determine the geographical extension and the impact of this epidemic on the highly susceptible livestock and human populations.

  3. Rift Valley fever on the east coast of Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Morvan, J; Saluzzo, J F; Fontenille, D; Rollin, P E; Coulanges, P

    1991-01-01

    In March 1990, a Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) outbreak was suspected in the district of Fenerive on the east coast of Madagascar after an abnormally high incidence of abortions and disease in livestock. Sera from humans and cattle were tested for RVFV antibodies by immunofluorescence assay (IFA) and ELISA-IgM capture. Sera and mosquitoes collected in the same area were tested for virus isolation by tissue culture and suckling mouse intracerebral inoculation, and for antigen detection by an ELISA antigen capture assay. Among cattle from the area, RVFV antibody prevalence was 58.6% by IFA and 29.6% by ELISA-IgM. In contrast, human populations in the same area had a lower RVFV antibody prevalence, with 8.01% IFA and 5.4% IgM-positive sera. No RVFV antigen was detected and virus isolation was unsuccessful from the sera and mosquito pools tested. Different hypotheses concerning the emergence and diffusion of RVFV in this area and the occurrence of the outbreak are discussed.

  4. Kanda fault: A major seismogenic element west of the Rukwa Rift (Tanzania, East Africa)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vittori, Eutizio; Delvaux, Damien; Kervyn, François

    1997-09-01

    The NW-SE trending Rukwa Rift, part of the East African Rift System, links the approximately N-S oriented Tanganyika and Nyassa (Malawi) depressions. The rift has a complex half-graben structure, generally interpreted as the result of normal and strike-slip faulting. Morphological and structural data (e.g. fault scarps, faceted spurs, tilting of Quaternary continental deposits, volcanism, seismicity) indicate Late Quaternary activity within the rift. In 1910 an earthquake of M = 7.4 (historically the largest felt in Africa) struck the Rukwa region. The epicentre was located near the Kanda fault, which affects the Ufipa plateau, separating the Rukwa depression from the south-Tanganyika basin. The geomorphic expression of the Kanda fault is a prominent fresh-looking scarp more than 180 km long, from Tunduma to north of Sumbawanga, that strikes roughly NW-SE, and dips constantly northeast. No evidence for horizontal slip was observed. Generally, the active faulting affects a very narrow zone, and is only locally distributed over several subparallel scarps. The height of the scarp progressively decreases towards the northwest, from about 40-50 m to a few metres north of Sumbawanga. Faulted lacustrine deposits exposed in a road cut near Kaengesa were dated as 8340 ± 700 and 13 600 ± 1240 radiocarbon years. These low-energy deposits now hang more than 15 m above the present-day valley floor, suggesting rapid uplift during the Holocene. Due to its high rate of activity in very recent times, the Kanda Fault could have produced the 1910 earthquake. Detailed paleoseismological studies are used to characterize its recent history. In addition, the seismic hazard posed by this fault, which crosses the fast growing town of Sumbawanga, must be seriously considered in urban planning.

  5. Continental breakup in Africa: From superplume to rifting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hammond, J. O.; Kendall, J. M.; Bastow, I. D.; Stuart, G. W.; Keir, D.; Ayele, A.; Ebinger, C. J.

    2010-12-01

    The low seismic velocities that underlie the East African continent are a ubiquitous feature of global tomographic images, and can readily explain both observed plateau uplift and the volcanic Cenozoic geological record in the region. However, knowledge of the morphology of the African Superplume, and the nature of the mantle flow-field remain incomplete. Over the last decade East Africa has seen many deployments of seismic stations, with the aim of understanding continental breakup in the region. We have combined data from 5 of these experiments, to enable us to resolve high resolution models of upper mantle P- and S- wave velocities, and seismic anisotropy extending from the Red Sea to Kenya. The tomographic inversions highlight a sheet like upwelling beneath this whole region. It is oriented SW-NE and extends from at least the transition zone to the crust. This is most likely associated with upwelling material associated with the African superplume. In the uppermost 100 km, strong P- and S- wave low velocity anomalies underlie the most recent rift related volcanism and are likely associated with high temperatures and partial melt. High quality SKS splitting results, from a variety of back azimuths, reveal depth variations in anisotropy beneath large parts of Ethiopia. The lower layer parallels the SW-NE trend of the low velocity anomaly, suggesting an LPO fabric due to mantle flow. The upper layer parallels structural features at the surface, including aligned melt in the crust/lithosphere at the rift axis, and Pan-African fabrics in regions not characterised by Quaternary volcanism. These results suggest that thermal instabilities arising from upwelling material provides heat for melting and uplift, but rifting may follow pre-existing weaknesses in the lithosphere.

  6. Seismic monitoring of the Olkaria Geothermal area, Kenya Rift valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simiyu, Silas M.; Keller, G. Randy

    2000-01-01

    Seismic monitoring of the Olkaria Geothermal area in the southern Rift Valley region of Kenya has been carried out since 1985. The initial purpose of this effort was to determine the background level of seismicity before full exploitation of the geothermal resource was started. This monitoring began with one seismic station. However, since May 1996, a seismic network comprising six stations was operated and focused mainly on the East Production Field. During the 5 months of network recording up to mid-September 1996, more than 460 local events originating within the Olkaria Geothermal area ( Ts- Tp<5 s) were recorded, out of which 123 were well-located. Also, 62 events were recorded at regional distances (5 s< Ts- Tp<40 s), and 44 events at teleseismic distance ( Ts- Tp>40 s). During this period, the local microseismicity was found to be continuous with swarms occurring every 4-5 days. Duration magnitudes based on the coda length did not exceed 3.0. Preliminary spectral analysis shows three kinds of seismic signals, with only the first type displaying well-defined P- and S-phases. The seismicity is mainly concentrated in the central area of the recording network, and the linear alignments in the epicenters are striking. A prominent alignment occurs along the Ololbutot fault zone extending from the northern end of the greater Olkaria volcanic complex to the south near the southern terminus of Hell's gorge. Two other prominent alignments occur along NW-SE trends that coincide with fault zones which have been detected by geological and gravity studies. Consequently, they are interpreted to be associated with fluid movement in the geothermal field. These preliminary results suggest that seismic monitoring will be useful to both monitor the field during production and to help site additional wells.

  7. Curcumin Inhibits Rift Valley Fever Virus Replication in Human Cells*

    PubMed Central

    Narayanan, Aarthi; Kehn-Hall, Kylene; Senina, Svetlana; Lundberg, Lindsay; Van Duyne, Rachel; Guendel, Irene; Das, Ravi; Baer, Alan; Bethel, Laura; Turell, Michael; Hartman, Amy Lynn; Das, Bhaskar; Bailey, Charles; Kashanchi, Fatah

    2012-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arbovirus that is classified as a select agent, an emerging infectious virus, and an agricultural pathogen. Understanding RVFV-host interactions is imperative to the design of novel therapeutics. Here, we report that an infection by the MP-12 strain of RVFV induces phosphorylation of the p65 component of the NFκB cascade. We demonstrate that phosphorylation of p65 (serine 536) involves phosphorylation of IκBα and occurs through the classical NFκB cascade. A unique, low molecular weight complex of the IKK-β subunit can be observed in MP-12-infected cells, which we have labeled IKK-β2. The IKK-β2 complex retains kinase activity and phosphorylates an IκBα substrate. Inhibition of the IKK complex using inhibitors impairs viral replication, thus alluding to the requirement of an active IKK complex to the viral life cycle. Curcumin strongly down-regulates levels of extracellular infectious virus. Our data demonstrated that curcumin binds to and inhibits kinase activity of the IKK-β2 complex in infected cells. Curcumin partially exerts its inhibitory influence on RVFV replication by interfering with IKK-β2-mediated phosphorylation of the viral protein NSs and by altering the cell cycle of treated cells. Curcumin also demonstrated efficacy against ZH501, the fully virulent version of RVFV. Curcumin treatment down-regulated viral replication in the liver of infected animals. Our data point to the possibility that RVFV infection may result in the generation of novel versions of host components (such as IKK-β2) that, by virtue of altered protein interaction and function, qualify as unique therapeutic targets. PMID:22847000

  8. Evaporation Estimation of Rift Valley Lakes: Comparison of Models

    PubMed Central

    Melesse, Assefa M.; Abtew, Wossenu; Dessalegne, Tibebe

    2009-01-01

    Evapotranspiration (ET) accounts for a substantial amount of the water flux in the arid and semi-arid regions of the World. Accurate estimation of ET has been a challenge for hydrologists, mainly because of the spatiotemporal variability of the environmental and physical parameters governing the latent heat flux. In addition, most available ET models depend on intensive meteorological information for ET estimation. Such data are not available at the desired spatial and temporal scales in less developed and remote parts of the world. This limitation has necessitated the development of simple models that are less data intensive and provide ET estimates with acceptable level of accuracy. Remote sensing approach can also be applied to large areas where meteorological data are not available and field scale data collection is costly, time consuming and difficult. In areas like the Rift Valley regions of Ethiopia, the applicability of the Simple Method (Abtew Method) of lake evaporation estimation and surface energy balance approach using remote sensing was studied. The Simple Method and a remote sensing-based lake evaporation estimates were compared to the Penman, Energy balance, Pan, Radiation and Complementary Relationship Lake Evaporation (CRLE) methods applied in the region. Results indicate a good correspondence of the models outputs to that of the above methods. Comparison of the 1986 and 2000 monthly lake ET from the Landsat images to the Simple and Penman Methods show that the remote sensing and surface energy balance approach is promising for large scale applications to understand the spatial variation of the latent heat flux. PMID:22303142

  9. Rift Valley fever outbreak--Kenya, November 2006-January 2007.

    PubMed

    2007-02-01

    In mid-December 2006, several unexplained fatalities associated with fever and generalized bleeding were reported to the Kenya Ministry of Health (KMOH) from Garissa District in North Eastern Province (NEP). By December 20, a total of 11 deaths had been reported. Of serum samples collected from the first 19 patients, Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus RNA or immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibodies against RVF virus were found in samples from 10 patients; all serum specimens were negative for yellow fever, Ebola, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, and dengue viruses. The outbreak was confirmed by isolation of RVF virus from six of the specimens. Humans can be infected with RVF virus from bites of mosquitoes or other arthropod vectors that have fed on animals infected with RVF virus, or through contact with viremic animals, particularly livestock. Reports of livestock deaths and unexplained animal abortions in NEP provided further evidence of an RVF outbreak. On December 20, an investigation was launched by KMOH, the Kenya Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program (FELTP), the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI), the Walter Reed Project of the U.S. Army Medical Research Unit, CDC-Kenya's Global Disease Detection Center, and other partners, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). This report describes the findings from that initial investigation and the control measures taken in response to the RVF outbreak, which spread to multiple additional provinces and districts, resulting in 404 cases with 118 deaths as of January 25, 2007.

  10. The 2007 Rift Valley Fever Outbreak in Sudan

    PubMed Central

    Hassan, Osama Ahmed; Ahlm, Clas; Sang, Rosemary; Evander, Magnus

    2011-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a neglected, emerging, mosquito-borne disease with severe negative impact on human and animal health and economy. RVF is caused by RVF virus (RVFV) affecting humans and a wide range of animals. The virus is transmitted through bites from mosquitoes and exposure to viremic blood, body fluids, or tissues of infected animals. During 2007 a large RVF outbreak occurred in Sudan with a total of 747 confirmed human cases including 230 deaths (case fatality 30.8%); although it has been estimated 75,000 were infected. It was most severe in White Nile, El Gezira, and Sennar states near to the White Nile and the Blue Nile Rivers. Notably, RVF was not demonstrated in livestock until after the human cases appeared and unfortunately, there are no records or reports of the number of affected animals or deaths. Ideally, animals should serve as sentinels to prevent loss of human life, but the situation here was reversed. Animal contact seemed to be the most dominant risk factor followed by animal products and mosquito bites. The Sudan outbreak followed an unusually heavy rainfall in the country with severe flooding and previous studies on RVF in Sudan suggest that RVFV is endemic in parts of Sudan. An RVF outbreak results in human disease, but also large economic loss with an impact beyond the immediate influence on the directly affected agricultural producers. The outbreak emphasizes the need for collaboration between veterinary and health authorities, entomologists, environmental specialists, and biologists, as the best strategy towards the prevention and control of RVF. PMID:21980543

  11. Contrasting modes of rifting: The Benue Trough and Cameroon Volcanic Line, West Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okereke, C. S.

    1988-08-01

    The Benue trough of west Africa is commonly believed to be a rift feature that originated in the Cretaceous at about the time that Africa and South America began to separate. Bouguer gravity and available geological data in the trough indicate that its formation was probably the result of regional horizontal stresses in the lithosphere, causing crustal extension and surface subsidence. By contrast, the data for the adjoining Cameroon volcanic line suggests that the associated tensional stresses relate to mantle upwarp causing thinning of the lithosphere and regional crustal uplift similar to that associated with the Kenya rift. Thus the association of passive and active rifts seen in the Afro-Arabia rift system is also a feature of the Cretaceous rift system in west Africa.

  12. Arabidopsis thaliana plants expressing Rift Valley fever virus antigens: Mice exhibit systemic immune responses as the result of oral administration of the transgenic plants.

    PubMed

    Kalbina, Irina; Lagerqvist, Nina; Moiane, Bélisario; Ahlm, Clas; Andersson, Sören; Strid, Åke; Falk, Kerstin I

    2016-11-01

    The zoonotic Rift Valley fever virus affects livestock and humans in Africa and on the Arabian Peninsula. The economic impact of this pathogen due to livestock losses, as well as its relevance to public health, underscores the importance of developing effective and easily distributed vaccines. Vaccines that can be delivered orally are of particular interest. Here, we report the expression in transformed plants (Arabidopsis thaliana) of Rift Valley fever virus antigens. The antigens used in this study were the N protein and a deletion mutant of the Gn glycoprotein. Transformed lines were analysed for specific mRNA and protein content by RT-PCR and Western blotting, respectively. Furthermore, the plant-expressed antigens were evaluated for their immunogenicity in mice fed the transgenic plants. After oral intake of fresh transgenic plant material, a proportion of the mice elicited specific IgG antibody responses, as compared to the control animals that were fed wild-type plants and of which none sero-converted. Thus, we show that transgenic plants can be readily used to express and produce Rift Valley Fever virus proteins, and that the plants are immunogenic when given orally to mice. These are promising findings and provide a basis for further studies on edible plant vaccines against the Rift Valley fever virus.

  13. Seroprevalence of Rift Valley fever virus in sheep and goats in Zambézia, Mozambique

    PubMed Central

    Blomström, Anne-Lie; Scharin, Isabelle; Stenberg, Hedvig; Figueiredo, Jaquline; Nhambirre, Ofélia; Abilio, Ana; Berg, Mikael; Fafetine, José

    2016-01-01

    Background The Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a vector-borne virus that causes disease in ruminants, but it can also infect humans. In humans, the infection can be asymptomatic but can also lead to illness, ranging from a mild disease with fever, headache and muscle pain to a severe disease with encephalitis and haemorrhagic fever. In rare cases, death can occur. In infected animals, influenza-like symptoms can occur, and abortion and mortality in young animals are indicative of RVFV infection. Since the initial outbreak in Kenya in the 1930s, the virus has become endemic to most of sub-Saharan Africa. In 2000, the virus appeared in Yemen and Saudi Arabia; this was the first outbreak of RVF outside of Africa. Rift Valley fever epidemics are often connected to heavy rainfall, leading to an increased vector population and spread of the virus to animals and/or humans. However, the virus needs to be maintained during the inter-epidemic periods. In this study, we investigated the circulation of RVFV in small ruminants (goats and sheep) in Zambézia, Mozambique, an area with a close vector/wildlife/livestock/human interface. Materials and methods Between September and October 2013, 181 sheep and 187 goat blood samples were collected from eight localities in the central region of Zambézia, Mozambique. The samples were analysed for the presence of antibodies against RVFV using a commercial competitive ELISA. Results and discussion The overall seroprevalence was higher in sheep (44.2%) than goats (25.1%); however, there was a high variation in seroprevalence between different localities. The data indicate an increased seroprevalence for sheep compared to 2010, when a similar study was conducted in this region and in overlapping villages. No noticeable health problems in the herds were reported. Conclusions This study shows an inter-epidemic circulation of RVFV in small ruminants in Zambézia, Mozambique. Neither outbreaks of RVF nor typical clinical signs of RVFV have

  14. A network-based meta-population approach to model Rift Valley fever epidemics.

    PubMed

    Xue, Ling; Scott, H Morgan; Cohnstaedt, Lee W; Scoglio, Caterina

    2012-08-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) has been expanding its geographical distribution with important implications for both human and animal health. The emergence of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in the Middle East, and its continuing presence in many areas of Africa, has negatively impacted both medical and veterinary infrastructures and human morbidity, mortality, and economic endpoints. Furthermore, worldwide attention should be directed towards the broader infection dynamics of RVFV, because suitable host, vector and environmental conditions for additional epidemics likely exist on other continents; including Asia, Europe and the Americas. We propose a new compartmentalized model of RVF and the related ordinary differential equations to assess disease spread in both time and space; with the latter driven as a function of contact networks. Humans and livestock hosts and two species of vector mosquitoes are included in the model. The model is based on weighted contact networks, where nodes of the networks represent geographical regions and the weights represent the level of contact between regional pairings for each set of species. The inclusion of human, animal, and vector movements among regions is new to RVF modeling. The movement of the infected individuals is not only treated as a possibility, but also an actuality that can be incorporated into the model. We have tested, calibrated, and evaluated the model using data from the recent 2010 RVF outbreak in South Africa as a case study; mapping the epidemic spread within and among three South African provinces. An extensive set of simulation results shows the potential of the proposed approach for accurately modeling the RVF spreading process in additional regions of the world. The benefits of the proposed model are twofold: not only can the model differentiate the maximum number of infected individuals among different provinces, but also it can reproduce the different starting times of the outbreak in multiple locations

  15. Rift Valley lake fish and shellfish provided brain-specific nutrition for early Homo.

    PubMed

    Broadhurst, C L; Cunnane, S C; Crawford, M A

    1998-01-01

    An abundant, balanced dietary intake of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids is an absolute requirement for sustaining the very rapid expansion of the hominid cerebral cortex during the last one to two million years. The brain contains 600 g lipid/kg, with a long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid profile containing approximately equal proportions of arachidonic acid and docosahexaenoic acid. Long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid deficiency at any stage of fetal and/or infant development can result in irreversible failure to accomplish specific components of brain growth. For the past fifteen million years, the East African Rift Valley has been a unique geological environment which contains many enormous freshwater lakes. Paleoanthropological evidence clearly indicates that hominids evolved in East Africa, and that early Homo inhabited the Rift Valley lake shores. Although earlier hominid species migrated to Eurasia, modern Homo sapiens is believed to have originated in Africa between 100 and 200 thousand years ago, and subsequently migrated throughout the world. A shift in the hominid resource base towards more high-quality foods occurred approximately two million years ago; this was accompanied by an increase in relative brain size and a shift towards modern patterns of fetal and infant development. There is evidence for both meat and fish scavenging, although sophisticated tool industries and organized hunting had not yet developed. The earliest occurrences of modern H. sapiens and sophisticated tool technology are associated with aquatic resource bases. Tropical freshwater fish and shellfish have long-chain polyunsaturated lipid ratios more similar to that of the human brain than any other food source known. Consistent consumption of lacustrine foods could have provided a means of initiating and sustaining cerebral cortex growth without an attendant increase in body mass. A modest intake of fish and shellfish (6-12% total dietary energy intake) can provide more

  16. The Pongola structure of southeastern Africa - The world's oldest preserved rift?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burke, K.; Kidd, W. S. F.; Kusky, T. M.

    1985-01-01

    Rocks of the Pongola Supergroup form an elongate belt in the Archean Kaapvaal Craton of southern Africa. Because these rocks exhibit many features that are characteristic of rocks deposited in continental rifts, including rapid lateral variations in thickness and character of sediments, volcanic rocks that are bimodal in silica content, coarse, basement derived conglomerates and thick sequences of shallow water sedimentary facies associations, it is suggested that the Pongola Supergroup was deposited in such a rift. The age of these rocks (approximately 3.0 Ga) makes the Pongola structure the world's oldest well-preserved rift so far recognized, and comparison of the Pongola Rift with other rifts formed more recently in earth history reveals striking similarities, suggesting that the processes that formed this rift were not significantly different from those that form continental rifts today.

  17. Evidence for Circulation of the Rift Valley Fever Virus among Livestock in the Union of Comoros

    PubMed Central

    Soulé, Miradje; Faharoudine, Abdourahime; Foray, Coralie; Olive, Marie-Marie; Maquart, Marianne; Soulaimane, Abdouroihamane; Madi Kassim, Ahmed; Cêtre-Sossah, Catherine; Cardinale, Eric

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arthropod-borne phlebovirus reported to be circulating in most parts of Africa. Since 2009, RVFV has been suspected of continuously circulating in the Union of Comoros. To estimate the incidence of RVFV antibody acquisition in the Comorian ruminant population, 191 young goats and cattle were selected in six distinct zones and sampled periodically from April 2010 to August 2011. We found an estimated incidence of RVFV antibody acquisition of 17.5% (95% confidence interval (CI): [8.9–26.1]) with a significant difference between islands (8.2% in Grande Comore, 72.3% in Moheli and 5.8% in Anjouan). Simultaneously, a longitudinal entomological survey was conducted and ruminant trade-related information was collected. No RVFV RNA was detected out of the 1,568 blood-sucking caught insects, including three potential vectors of RVFV mosquito species. Our trade survey suggests that there is a continuous flow of live animals from eastern Africa to the Union of Comoros and movements of ruminants between the three Comoro islands. Finally, a cross-sectional study was performed in August 2011 at the end of the follow-up. We found an estimated RVFV antibody prevalence of 19.3% (95% CI: [15.6%–23.0%]). Our findings suggest a complex RVFV epidemiological cycle in the Union of Comoros with probable inter-islands differences in RVFV circulation patterns. Moheli, and potentially Anjouan, appear to be acting as endemic reservoir of infection whereas RVFV persistence in Grande Comore could be correlated with trade in live animals with the eastern coast of Africa. More data are needed to estimate the real impact of the disease on human health and on the national economy. PMID:25078616

  18. Widespread Rift Valley Fever Emergence in Senegal in 2013–2014

    PubMed Central

    Sow, Abdourahmane; Faye, Ousmane; Ba, Yamar; Diallo, Diawo; Fall, Gamou; Faye, Oumar; Bob, Ndeye Sakha; Loucoubar, Cheikh; Richard, Vincent; Dia, Anta Tal; Diallo, Mawlouth; Malvy, Denis; Sall, Amadou Alpha

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), which caused epizootics and epidemics among human and livestock populations, occurred in Senegal in 2013–2014. A multidisciplinary field investigation was carried out in 3 regions of Senegal. We found 11 confirmed human cases of Rift Valley fever, including severe cases with encephalitis and retinitis, 1 pool of mosquito (Aedes ochraceus), and 52 animals tested positive for the disease. Symptoms such as encephalitis and macular retinitis were the most severe cases reported so far in Senegal. The outbreak was widespread due to animals' movements, leading to the largest RVF outbreak in Senegal in terms of geographic spreading and reaching areas that never reported RVF activity previously. PMID:27704007

  19. A model for the three-dimensional evolution of continental rift basins, north-east Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bosworth, William

    1994-12-01

    Large areas of north-east Africa were dominated by regional extension in the Late Phanerozoic. Widespread rifting occurred in the Late Jurassic, with regional extension culminating in the Cretaceous and resulting in the greatest areal extent and degree of interconnection of the west, central and north African rift systems. Basin reactivation continued in the Paleocene and Eocene and new rifts probably formed in the Red Sea and western Kenya. In the Oligocene and Early Miocene, rifts in Kenya, Ethiopia and the Red Sea linked and expanded to form the new east African rift system. This complex history of rifting resulted in failed rift basins with low to high strain geometries, a range of associated volcanism and varying degrees of interaction with older structures. One system, the Red Sea rift, has partially attained active seafloor spreading. From a comparison of these basins, a general model of three-dimensional rift evolution is proposed. Asymmetrical crustal geometries dominated the early phases of these basins, accompanied by low angle normal faulting that has been observed at least locally in outcrop. As rifting progressed, the original fault and basin forms were modified to produce larger, more through-going structures. Some basins were abandoned, others experienced reversals in regional dip and, in general, extension and subsidence became focused along narrower zones near the rift axes. The final transition to oceanic spreading was accomplished in the Red Sea by a change to high angle, planar normal faulting and diffuse dike injection, followed by the organization of an axial magma chamber.

  20. The transmission potential of Rift Valley fever virus among livestock in the Netherlands: a modelling study

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Abstracts Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a zoonotic vector-borne infection and causes a potentially severe disease. Many mammals are susceptible to infection including important livestock species. Although currently confined to Africa and the near-East, this disease causes concern in countries in temperate climates where both hosts and potential vectors are present, such as the Netherlands. Currently, an assessment of the probability of an outbreak occurring in this country is missing. To evaluate the transmission potential of RVFV, a mathematical model was developed and used to determine the initial growth and the Floquet ratio, which are indicators of the probability of an outbreak and of persistence in a periodic changing environment caused by seasonality. We show that several areas of the Netherlands have a high transmission potential and risk of persistence of the infection. Counter-intuitively, these are the sparsely populated livestock areas, due to the high vector-host ratios in these areas. Culex pipiens s.l. is found to be the main driver of the spread and persistence, because it is by far the most abundant mosquito. Our investigation underscores the importance to determine the vector competence of this mosquito species for RVFV and its host preference. PMID:23876054

  1. Serologic evidence of exposure to Rift Valley fever virus detected in Tunisia

    PubMed Central

    Bosworth, A.; Ghabbari, T.; Dowall, S.; Varghese, A.; Fares, W.; Hewson, R.; Zhioua, E.; Chakroun, M.; Tiouiri, H.; Ben Jemaa, M.; Znazen, A.; Letaief, A.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFv) is capable of causing dramatic outbreaks amongst economically important animal species and is capable of causing severe symptoms and mortality in humans. RVFv is known to circulate widely throughout East Africa; serologic evidence of exposure has also been found in some northern African countries, including Mauritania. This study aimed to ascertain whether RVFv is circulating in regions beyond its known geographic range. Samples from febrile patients (n = 181) and nonfebrile healthy agricultural and slaughterhouse workers (n = 38) were collected during the summer of 2014 and surveyed for exposure to RVFv by both serologic tests and PCR. Of the 219 samples tested, 7.8% of nonfebrile participants showed immunoglobulin G reactivity to RVFv nucleoprotein and 8.3% of febrile patients showed immunoglobulin M reactivity, with the latter samples indicating recent exposure to the virus. Our results suggest an active circulation of RVFv and evidence of human exposure in the population of Tunisia. PMID:26740887

  2. Serologic evidence of exposure to Rift Valley fever virus detected in Tunisia.

    PubMed

    Bosworth, A; Ghabbari, T; Dowall, S; Varghese, A; Fares, W; Hewson, R; Zhioua, E; Chakroun, M; Tiouiri, H; Ben Jemaa, M; Znazen, A; Letaief, A

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFv) is capable of causing dramatic outbreaks amongst economically important animal species and is capable of causing severe symptoms and mortality in humans. RVFv is known to circulate widely throughout East Africa; serologic evidence of exposure has also been found in some northern African countries, including Mauritania. This study aimed to ascertain whether RVFv is circulating in regions beyond its known geographic range. Samples from febrile patients (n = 181) and nonfebrile healthy agricultural and slaughterhouse workers (n = 38) were collected during the summer of 2014 and surveyed for exposure to RVFv by both serologic tests and PCR. Of the 219 samples tested, 7.8% of nonfebrile participants showed immunoglobulin G reactivity to RVFv nucleoprotein and 8.3% of febrile patients showed immunoglobulin M reactivity, with the latter samples indicating recent exposure to the virus. Our results suggest an active circulation of RVFv and evidence of human exposure in the population of Tunisia.

  3. Aerosolized rift valley fever virus causes fatal encephalitis in african green monkeys and common marmosets.

    PubMed

    Hartman, Amy L; Powell, Diana S; Bethel, Laura M; Caroline, Amy L; Schmid, Richard J; Oury, Tim; Reed, Douglas S

    2014-02-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a veterinary and human disease in Africa and the Middle East. The causative agent, RVF virus (RVFV), can be naturally transmitted by mosquito, direct contact, or aerosol. We sought to develop a nonhuman primate (NHP) model of severe RVF in humans to better understand the pathogenesis of RVF and to use for evaluation of medical countermeasures. NHP from four different species were exposed to aerosols containing RVFV. Both cynomolgus and rhesus macaques developed mild fevers after inhalation of RVFV, but no other clinical signs were noted and no macaque succumbed to RVFV infection. In contrast, both marmosets and African green monkeys (AGM) proved susceptible to aerosolized RVF virus. Fever onset was earlier with the marmosets and had a biphasic pattern similar to what has been reported in humans. Beginning around day 8 to day 10 postexposure, clinical signs consistent with encephalitis were noted in both AGM and marmosets; animals of both species succumbed between days 9 and 11 postexposure. Marmosets were susceptible to lower doses of RVFV than AGM. Histological examination confirmed viral meningoencephalitis in both species. Hematological analyses indicated a drop in platelet counts in both AGM and marmosets suggestive of thrombosis, as well as leukocytosis that consisted mostly of granulocytes. Both AGM and marmosets would serve as useful models of aerosol infection with RVFV.

  4. Rift Valley Fever Virus Epidemic in Kenya, 2006/2007: The Entomologic Investigations

    PubMed Central

    Sang, Rosemary; Kioko, Elizabeth; Lutomiah, Joel; Warigia, Marion; Ochieng, Caroline; O'Guinn, Monica; Lee, John S.; Koka, Hellen; Godsey, Marvin; Hoel, David; Hanafi, Hanafi; Miller, Barry; Schnabel, David; Breiman, Robert F.; Richardson, Jason

    2010-01-01

    In December 2006, Rift Valley fever (RVF) was diagnosed in humans in Garissa Hospital, Kenya and an outbreak reported affecting 11 districts. Entomologic surveillance was performed in four districts to determine the epidemic/epizootic vectors of RVF virus (RVFV). Approximately 297,000 mosquitoes were collected, 164,626 identified to species, 72,058 sorted into 3,003 pools and tested for RVFV by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Seventy-seven pools representing 10 species tested positive for RVFV, including Aedes mcintoshi/circumluteolus (26 pools), Aedes ochraceus (23 pools), Mansonia uniformis (15 pools); Culex poicilipes, Culex bitaeniorhynchus (3 pools each); Anopheles squamosus, Mansonia africana (2 pools each); Culex quinquefasciatus, Culex univittatus, Aedes pembaensis (1 pool each). Positive Ae. pembaensis, Cx. univittatus, and Cx. bitaeniorhynchus was a first time observation. Species composition, densities, and infection varied among districts supporting hypothesis that different mosquito species serve as epizootic/epidemic vectors of RVFV in diverse ecologies, creating a complex epidemiologic pattern in East Africa. PMID:20682903

  5. Rift Valley fever virus epidemic in Kenya, 2006/2007: the entomologic investigations.

    PubMed

    Sang, Rosemary; Kioko, Elizabeth; Lutomiah, Joel; Warigia, Marion; Ochieng, Caroline; O'Guinn, Monica; Lee, John S; Koka, Hellen; Godsey, Marvin; Hoel, David; Hanafi, Hanafi; Miller, Barry; Schnabel, David; Breiman, Robert F; Richardson, Jason

    2010-08-01

    In December 2006, Rift Valley fever (RVF) was diagnosed in humans in Garissa Hospital, Kenya and an outbreak reported affecting 11 districts. Entomologic surveillance was performed in four districts to determine the epidemic/epizootic vectors of RVF virus (RVFV). Approximately 297,000 mosquitoes were collected, 164,626 identified to species, 72,058 sorted into 3,003 pools and tested for RVFV by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Seventy-seven pools representing 10 species tested positive for RVFV, including Aedes mcintoshi/circumluteolus (26 pools), Aedes ochraceus (23 pools), Mansonia uniformis (15 pools); Culex poicilipes, Culex bitaeniorhynchus (3 pools each); Anopheles squamosus, Mansonia africana (2 pools each); Culex quinquefasciatus, Culex univittatus, Aedes pembaensis (1 pool each). Positive Ae. pembaensis, Cx. univittatus, and Cx. bitaeniorhynchus was a first time observation. Species composition, densities, and infection varied among districts supporting hypothesis that different mosquito species serve as epizootic/epidemic vectors of RVFV in diverse ecologies, creating a complex epidemiologic pattern in East Africa.

  6. Mapping a Major Gene for Resistance to Rift Valley Fever Virus in Laboratory Rats.

    PubMed

    Busch, Catherine M; Callicott, Ralph J; Peters, Clarence J; Morrill, John C; Womack, James E

    2015-01-01

    The Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV) presents an epidemic and epizootic threat in sub-Saharan Africa, Egypt, and the Arabian Peninsula, and has furthermore recently gained attention as a potential weapon of bioterrorism due to its ability to infect both livestock and humans. Inbred rat strains show similar characteristic responses to the disease as humans and livestock, making them a suitable model species. Previous studies had indicated differences in susceptibility to RVFV hepatic disease among various rat strains, including a higher susceptibility of Wistar-Furth (WF) compared to a more resistant Lewis (LEW) strain. Further study revealed that this resistance trait exhibits the pattern of a major dominant gene inherited in Mendelian fashion. A genome scan of a congenic WF.LEW strain, created from the susceptible WF and resistant LEW strains and itself resistant to infection with RVFV, revealed 2 potential regions for the location of the gene, 1 on chromosome 3 and the other on chromosome 9. Through backcrossing of WF.LEW rats to WF rats, genotyping offspring using SNPs and microsatellites, and viral challenges of 3 N1 litters, we have mapped the gene to the distal end of chromosome 3. PMID:26546799

  7. Inflammatory Biomarkers Associated with Lethal Rift Valley Fever Encephalitis in the Lewis Rat Model

    PubMed Central

    Caroline, Amy L.; Kujawa, Michael R.; Oury, Tim D.; Reed, Douglas S.; Hartman, Amy L.

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an emerging viral disease that causes significant human and veterinary illness in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Encephalitis is one of the severe complications arising from RVF virus (RVFV) infection of people, and the pathogenesis of this form of RVF is completely unknown. We use a novel reproducible encephalitic disease model in rats to identify biomarkers of lethal infection. Lewis rats were infected with RVFV strain ZH501 by aerosol exposure, then sacrificed daily to determine the course of infection and evaluation of clinical, virological, and immunological parameters. Weight loss, fever, and clinical signs occurred during the last 1–2 days prior to death. Prior to onset of clinical indications of disease, rats displayed marked granulocytosis and thrombocytopenia. In addition, high levels of inflammatory chemokines (MCP-1, MCS-F, Gro/KC, RANTES, and IL-1β) were detected first in serum (3–5 dpi) followed by brain (5–7 dpi). The results of this study are consistent with clinical data from human RVF patients and validate Lewis rats as an appropriate small animal model for RVF encephalitis. The biomarkers we identified here will be useful in future studies evaluating the efficacy of novel vaccines and therapeutics. PMID:26779164

  8. Data-Driven Modeling to Assess Receptivity for Rift Valley Fever Virus

    PubMed Central

    Barker, Christopher M.; Niu, Tianchan; Reisen, William K.; Hartley, David M.

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV) is an enzootic virus that causes extensive morbidity and mortality in domestic ruminants in Africa, and it has shown the potential to invade other areas such as the Arabian Peninsula. Here, we develop methods for linking mathematical models to real-world data that could be used for continent-scale risk assessment given adequate data on local host and vector populations. We have applied the methods to a well-studied agricultural region of California with 1 million dairy cattle, abundant and competent mosquito vectors, and a permissive climate that has enabled consistent transmission of West Nile virus and historically other arboviruses. Our results suggest that RVFV outbreaks could occur from February–November, but would progress slowly during winter–early spring or early fall and be limited spatially to areas with early increases in vector abundance. Risk was greatest in summer, when the areas at risk broadened to include most of the dairy farms in the study region, indicating the potential for considerable economic losses if an introduction were to occur. To assess the threat that RVFV poses to North America, including what-if scenarios for introduction and control strategies, models such as this one should be an integral part of the process; however, modeling must be paralleled by efforts to address the numerous remaining gaps in data and knowledge for this system. PMID:24244769

  9. The Proto-Indian Ocean and a probable paleozoic/mesozoic triradial rift system in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cannon, R. T.; Simiyu Siambi, W. M. N.; Karanja, F. M.

    1981-02-01

    established until the displacement of Madagascar away from Africa, probably in the Cretaceous. Accepting the above northern position of Madagascar, the writers also postulate that in East Africa the fault-bounded Karroo depositional basins (troughs) were located within a major triradial rift system extending from Lake Malawi at least as far as eastern Kenya (some 1600 km). This rift system, if valid, was established within Gondwanaland over a period ˜100 m.y. in the Paleozoic/Mesozoic (pre-breakup) in marked contrast to the East African Rift System (classical rift valleys) which is mainly a Cainozoic phenomenon (post-breakup). It is, therefore, considered that there is a fundamental difference in origin between the two rift systems.

  10. Potential for mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) from Florida to transmit rift valley fever virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We evaluated 8 species of mosquitoes collected in Florida to determine which of these should be targeted for control should Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) be detected in North America. Female mosquitoes that had fed on adult hamsters inoculated with RVFV were incubated for 7-21 d at 26°C, allowed to...

  11. Mosquito host choices on livestock amplifiers of Rift Valley fever virus in Kenya

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Animal hosts may vary in their attraction and acceptability as components of the host location process for assessing biting rates of vectors and risk of exposure to pathogens. However, these parameters remain poorly understood for mosquito vectors of the Rift Valley fever (RVF), an arboviral disease...

  12. USDA, ARS, ABDRL Research on Countermeasures for Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The United State Department of Agriculture, Agriculture Research Service has recently established research program to address countermeasures for of Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus (RVFV). The recent outbreak in Kenya, Tanzania and Somalia demonstrates the impact this virus can have on human and live...

  13. Effect of environmental temperature on the vector competence of mosquitoes for Rift Valley fever virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Environmental temperature has been shown to affect the ability of mosquitoes to transmit numerous arboviruses and for Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in particular. We evaluated the effect of incubation temperatures ranging from 14-26ºC on infection, dissemination, and transmission rates for Culex ta...

  14. Utility of Antibody Avidity for Rift Valley Fever Virus Vaccine Potency and Immunogenicity Studies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Disease outbreaks caused by arthropod-borne animal viruses (arboviruses) resulting in significant livestock and economic losses world-wide appear to be increasing. Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is an important arbovirus that causes lethal disease in cattle, camels, sheep and goats in sub-Saharan Afr...

  15. Potential for Psorophora columbiae and Psorophora ciliata mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) to transmit Rift Valley fever virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) continues to pose a threat to much of the world. Unlike many arboviruses, numerous mosquito species have been associated with RVFV in nature, and many species have been demonstrated as competent vectors in the laboratory. In this study, we evaluated two field-collect...

  16. Factors Affecting the Ability of American Mosquitoes to Transmit Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The recent outbreaks of disease caused by Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in Kenya, Mauritania, Yemen, Tanzania, Somalia, and Madagascar indicate the potential for RVFV to cause severe disease in both humans and domestic animals and its potential to be introduced into new areas, including North Ameri...

  17. Potential for North American Mosquitoes to Transmit Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The recent outbreaks of disease caused by Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in Kenya, Mauritania, Yemen, Tanzania, Somalia, and Madagascar indicate the potential for RVFV to cause severe disease in both humans and domestic animals and its potential to be introduced into new areas, including North Ameri...

  18. Potential for North American mosquitoes to transmit Rift Valley fever virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The recent outbreaks of disease caused by Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in Kenya, Mauritania, Yemen, Tanzania, Somalia, and Madagascar indicate the potential for RVFV to cause severe disease in both humans and domestic animals and its potential to be introduced into new areas, possibly even North A...

  19. Rift Valley Fever Virus among Wild Ruminants, Etosha National Park, Namibia, 2011

    PubMed Central

    Aschenborn, Ortwin; Pinoni, Chiara; Di Gialleonardo, Luigina; Maseke, Adrianatus; Bortone, Grazia; Polci, Andrea; Scacchia, Massimo; Molini, Umberto; Monaco, Federica

    2016-01-01

    After a May 2011 outbreak of Rift Valley fever among livestock northeast of Etosha National Park, Namibia, wild ruminants in the park were tested for the virus. Antibodies were detected in springbok, wildebeest, and black-faced impala, and viral RNA was detected in springbok. Seroprevalence was high, and immune response was long lasting. PMID:26692385

  20. 77 FR 68783 - Prospective Grant of Exclusive License: Veterinary Vaccines for Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-11-16

    ...: Veterinary Vaccines for Rift Valley Fever Virus AGENCY: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC... use of veterinary vaccines, to practice the inventions listed in the patent applications referred to.... Technology: The technology allows for the generation of precisely defined attenuated vaccine constructs...

  1. Rift Valley Fever Virus among Wild Ruminants, Etosha National Park, Namibia, 2011.

    PubMed

    Capobianco Dondona, Andrea; Aschenborn, Ortwin; Pinoni, Chiara; Di Gialleonardo, Luigina; Maseke, Adrianatus; Bortone, Grazia; Polci, Andrea; Scacchia, Massimo; Molini, Umberto; Monaco, Federica

    2016-01-01

    After a May 2011 outbreak of Rift Valley fever among livestock northeast of Etosha National Park, Namibia, wild ruminants in the park were tested for the virus. Antibodies were detected in springbok, wildebeest, and black-faced impala, and viral RNA was detected in springbok. Seroprevalence was high, and immune response was long lasting.

  2. Development of a Rift Valley fever virus viremia challenge model in sheep and goats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift valley fever virus (RVFV), a member of the family Bunyaviridae, causes severe to fatal disease in newborn ruminants, as well as abortions in pregnant animals; both preventable by vaccination. Availability of a challenge model is a pre-requisite for vaccine efficacy trials. Several modes of ino...

  3. Experimental infection of calves by two genetically-distinct strains of rift valley fever virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recent outbreaks of Rift Valley fever in ruminant livestock, characterized by mass abortion and high mortality rates in neonates, have raised international interest in improving vaccine control strategies. Previously we developed a reliable challenge model for sheep that improves the evaluation of ...

  4. Pupils' Environmental Awareness and Knowledge: A Springboard for Action in Primary Schools in Kenya's Rift Valley

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mutisya, Sammy M.; Barker, Miles

    2011-01-01

    This study was carried out with 276 standard eight pupils in eleven primary schools in the rural town of Narok in Kenya's Rift Valley. It evaluated their awareness of key environmental issues in their local area and their knowledge about the causes, effects and solutions pertaining to these environmental issues. A descriptive research design was…

  5. Modelling the effects of seasonality and socioeconomic impact on the transmission of rift valley Fever virus.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Yanyu; Beier, John C; Cantrell, Robert Stephen; Cosner, Chris; DeAngelis, Donald L; Ruan, Shigui

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an important mosquito-borne viral zoonosis in Africa and the Middle East that causes human deaths and significant economic losses due to huge incidences of death and abortion among infected livestock. Outbreaks of RVF are sporadic and associated with both seasonal and socioeconomic effects. Here we propose an almost periodic three-patch model to investigate the transmission dynamics of RVF virus (RVFV) among ruminants with spatial movements. Our findings indicate that, in Northeastern Africa, human activities, including those associated with the Eid al Adha feast, along with a combination of climatic factors such as rainfall level and hydrological variations, contribute to the transmission and dispersal of the disease pathogen. Moreover, sporadic outbreaks may occur when the two events occur together: 1) abundant livestock are recruited into areas at risk from RVF due to the demand for the religious festival and 2) abundant numbers of mosquitoes emerge. These two factors have been shown to have impacts on the severity of RVF outbreaks. Our numerical results present the transmission dynamics of the disease pathogen over both short and long periods of time, particularly during the festival time. Further, we investigate the impact on patterns of disease outbreaks in each patch brought by festival- and seasonal-driven factors, such as the number of livestock imported daily, the animal transportation speed from patch to patch, and the death rate induced by ceremonial sacrifices. In addition, our simulations show that when the time for festival preparation starts earlier than usual, the risk of massive disease outbreaks rises, particularly in patch 3 (the place where the religious ceremony will be held).

  6. Modelling the Effects of Seasonality and Socioeconomic Impact on the Transmission of Rift Valley Fever Virus

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Yanyu; Beier, John C.; Cantrell, Robert Stephen; Cosner, Chris; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Ruan, Shigui

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an important mosquito-borne viral zoonosis in Africa and the Middle East that causes human deaths and significant economic losses due to huge incidences of death and abortion among infected livestock. Outbreaks of RVF are sporadic and associated with both seasonal and socioeconomic effects. Here we propose an almost periodic three-patch model to investigate the transmission dynamics of RVF virus (RVFV) among ruminants with spatial movements. Our findings indicate that, in Northeastern Africa, human activities, including those associated with the Eid al Adha feast, along with a combination of climatic factors such as rainfall level and hydrological variations, contribute to the transmission and dispersal of the disease pathogen. Moreover, sporadic outbreaks may occur when the two events occur together: 1) abundant livestock are recruited into areas at risk from RVF due to the demand for the religious festival and 2) abundant numbers of mosquitoes emerge. These two factors have been shown to have impacts on the severity of RVF outbreaks. Our numerical results present the transmission dynamics of the disease pathogen over both short and long periods of time, particularly during the festival time. Further, we investigate the impact on patterns of disease outbreaks in each patch brought by festival- and seasonal-driven factors, such as the number of livestock imported daily, the animal transportation speed from patch to patch, and the death rate induced by ceremonial sacrifices. In addition, our simulations show that when the time for festival preparation starts earlier than usual, the risk of massive disease outbreaks rises, particularly in patch 3 (the place where the religious ceremony will be held). PMID:25569474

  7. Rift Valley Fever Virus Circulating among Ruminants, Mosquitoes and Humans in the Central African Republic

    PubMed Central

    Nakouné, Emmanuel; Kamgang, Basile; Berthet, Nicolas; Manirakiza, Alexandre; Kazanji, Mirdad

    2016-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes a viral zoonosis, with discontinuous epizootics and sporadic epidemics, essentially in East Africa. Infection with this virus causes severe illness and abortion in sheep, goats, and cattle as well as other domestic animals. Humans can also be exposed through close contact with infectious tissues or by bites from infected mosquitoes, primarily of the Aedes and Culex genuses. Although the cycle of RVFV infection in savannah regions is well documented, its distribution in forest areas in central Africa has been poorly investigated. Methodology/Principal Findings To evaluate current circulation of RVFV among livestock and humans living in the Central African Republic (CAR), blood samples were collected from sheep, cattle, and goats and from people at risk, such as stock breeders and workers in slaughterhouses and livestock markets. The samples were tested for anti-RVFV immunoglobulin M (IgM) and immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies. We also sequenced the complete genomes of two local strains, one isolated in 1969 from mosquitoes and one isolated in 1985 from humans living in forested areas. The 1271 animals sampled comprised 727 cattle, 325 sheep, and 219 goats at three sites. The overall seroprevalence of anti-RVFV IgM antibodies was 1.9% and that of IgG antibodies was 8.6%. IgM antibodies were found only during the rainy season, but the frequency of IgG antibodies did not differ significantly by season. No evidence of recent RVFV infection was found in 335 people considered at risk; however, 16.7% had evidence of past infection. Comparison of the nucleotide sequences of the strains isolated in the CAR with those isolated in other African countries showed that they belonged to the East/Central African cluster. Conclusion and significance This study confirms current circulation of RVFV in CAR. Further studies are needed to determine the potential vectors involved and the virus reservoirs. PMID:27760144

  8. Modelling the effects of seasonality and socioeconomic impact on the transmission of rift valley Fever virus.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Yanyu; Beier, John C; Cantrell, Robert Stephen; Cosner, Chris; DeAngelis, Donald L; Ruan, Shigui

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an important mosquito-borne viral zoonosis in Africa and the Middle East that causes human deaths and significant economic losses due to huge incidences of death and abortion among infected livestock. Outbreaks of RVF are sporadic and associated with both seasonal and socioeconomic effects. Here we propose an almost periodic three-patch model to investigate the transmission dynamics of RVF virus (RVFV) among ruminants with spatial movements. Our findings indicate that, in Northeastern Africa, human activities, including those associated with the Eid al Adha feast, along with a combination of climatic factors such as rainfall level and hydrological variations, contribute to the transmission and dispersal of the disease pathogen. Moreover, sporadic outbreaks may occur when the two events occur together: 1) abundant livestock are recruited into areas at risk from RVF due to the demand for the religious festival and 2) abundant numbers of mosquitoes emerge. These two factors have been shown to have impacts on the severity of RVF outbreaks. Our numerical results present the transmission dynamics of the disease pathogen over both short and long periods of time, particularly during the festival time. Further, we investigate the impact on patterns of disease outbreaks in each patch brought by festival- and seasonal-driven factors, such as the number of livestock imported daily, the animal transportation speed from patch to patch, and the death rate induced by ceremonial sacrifices. In addition, our simulations show that when the time for festival preparation starts earlier than usual, the risk of massive disease outbreaks rises, particularly in patch 3 (the place where the religious ceremony will be held). PMID:25569474

  9. Modelling the effects of seasonality and socioeconomic impact on the transmission of Rift Valley fever virus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Xiao, Yanyu; Beier, John C.; Cantrell, Robert Stephen; Cosner, Chris; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Ruan, Shigui

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an important mosquito-borne viral zoonosis in Africa and the Middle East that causes human deaths and significant economic losses due to huge incidences of death and abortion among infected livestock. Outbreaks of RVF are sporadic and associated with both seasonal and socioeconomic effects. Here we propose an almost periodic three-patch model to investigate the transmission dynamics of RVF virus (RVFV) among ruminants with spatial movements. Our findings indicate that, in Northeastern Africa, human activities, including those associated with the Eid al Adha feast, along with a combination of climatic factors such as rainfall level and hydrological variations, contribute to the transmission and dispersal of the disease pathogen. Moreover, sporadic outbreaks may occur when the two events occur together: 1) abundant livestock are recruited into areas at risk from RVF due to the demand for the religious festival and 2) abundant numbers of mosquitoes emerge. These two factors have been shown to have impacts on the severity of RVF outbreaks. Our numerical results present the transmission dynamics of the disease pathogen over both short and long periods of time, particularly during the festival time. Further, we investigate the impact on patterns of disease outbreaks in each patch brought by festival- and seasonal-driven factors, such as the number of livestock imported daily, the animal transportation speed from patch to patch, and the death rate induced by ceremonial sacrifices. In addition, our simulations show that when the time for festival preparation starts earlier than usual, the risk of massive disease outbreaks rises, particularly in patch 3 (the place where the religious ceremony will be held).

  10. Evidence of rift valley fever seroprevalence in the Sahrawi semi-nomadic pastoralist system, Western Sahara

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The increasing global importance of Rift Valley fever (RVF) is clearly demonstrated by its geographical expansion. The presence of a wide range of host and vector species, and the epidemiological characteristics of RVF, have led to concerns that epidemics will continue to occur in previously unaffected regions of Africa. The proximity of the Sahrawi territories of Western Sahara to endemic countries, such as Mauritania, Senegal, and Mali with periodic isolation of virus and serological evidence of RVF, and the intensive livestock trade in the region results in a serious risk of RVF spread in the Sahrawi territories, and potentially from there to the Maghreb and beyond. A sero-epidemiological survey was conducted in the Saharawi territories between March and April 2008 to investigate the possible presence of the RVF virus (RVFV) and associated risk factors. A two-stage cluster sampling design was used, incorporating 23 sampling sites. Results A total of 982 serum samples was collected from 461 sheep, 463 goats and 58 camels. Eleven samples (0.97%) tested positive for IgG against the RVFV. There were clusters of high seroprevalence located mostly in the Tifariti (7.69%) and Mehaires (7.14%) regions, with the Tifariti event having been found in one single flock (4/26 positive animals). Goats and older animals were at a significantly increased risk being seropositive (p = 0.007 and p = 0.007, respectively). Conclusion The results suggest potential RVF activity in the study area, where intense livestock movement and trade with neighbouring countries might be considered as a primary determinant in the spread of the disease. The importance of a continuous field investigation is reinforced, in light of the risk of RVF expansion to historically unaffected regions of Africa. PMID:24758592

  11. Comparison of Rift Valley fever virus replication in North American livestock and wildlife cell lines

    PubMed Central

    Gaudreault, Natasha N.; Indran, Sabarish V.; Bryant, P. K.; Richt, Juergen A.; Wilson, William C.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes disease outbreaks across Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, resulting in high morbidity and mortality among young domestic livestock, frequent abortions in pregnant animals, and potentially severe or fatal disease in humans. The possibility of RVFV spreading to the United States or other countries worldwide is of significant concern to animal and public health, livestock production, and trade. The mechanism for persistence of RVFV during inter-epidemic periods may be through mosquito transovarial transmission and/or by means of a wildlife reservoir. Field investigations in endemic areas and previous in vivo studies have demonstrated that RVFV can infect a wide range of animals, including indigenous wild ruminants of Africa. Yet no predominant wildlife reservoir has been identified, and gaps in our knowledge of RVFV permissive hosts still remain. In North America, domestic goats, sheep, and cattle are susceptible hosts for RVFV and several competent vectors exist. Wild ruminants such as deer might serve as a virus reservoir and given their abundance, wide distribution, and overlap with livestock farms and human populated areas could represent an important risk factor. The objective of this study was to assess a variety of cell lines derived from North American livestock and wildlife for susceptibility and permissiveness to RVFV. Results of this study suggest that RVFV could potentially replicate in native deer species such as white-tailed deer, and possibly a wide range of non-ruminant animals. This work serves to guide and support future animal model studies and risk model assessment regarding this high-consequence zoonotic pathogen. PMID:26175725

  12. Comparison of Rift Valley fever virus replication in North American livestock and wildlife cell lines.

    PubMed

    Gaudreault, Natasha N; Indran, Sabarish V; Bryant, P K; Richt, Juergen A; Wilson, William C

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes disease outbreaks across Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, resulting in high morbidity and mortality among young domestic livestock, frequent abortions in pregnant animals, and potentially severe or fatal disease in humans. The possibility of RVFV spreading to the United States or other countries worldwide is of significant concern to animal and public health, livestock production, and trade. The mechanism for persistence of RVFV during inter-epidemic periods may be through mosquito transovarial transmission and/or by means of a wildlife reservoir. Field investigations in endemic areas and previous in vivo studies have demonstrated that RVFV can infect a wide range of animals, including indigenous wild ruminants of Africa. Yet no predominant wildlife reservoir has been identified, and gaps in our knowledge of RVFV permissive hosts still remain. In North America, domestic goats, sheep, and cattle are susceptible hosts for RVFV and several competent vectors exist. Wild ruminants such as deer might serve as a virus reservoir and given their abundance, wide distribution, and overlap with livestock farms and human populated areas could represent an important risk factor. The objective of this study was to assess a variety of cell lines derived from North American livestock and wildlife for susceptibility and permissiveness to RVFV. Results of this study suggest that RVFV could potentially replicate in native deer species such as white-tailed deer, and possibly a wide range of non-ruminant animals. This work serves to guide and support future animal model studies and risk model assessment regarding this high-consequence zoonotic pathogen. PMID:26175725

  13. Biologically Informed Individual-Based Network Model for Rift Valley Fever in the US and Evaluation of Mitigation Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Scoglio, Caterina M.

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic disease endemic in sub-Saharan Africa with periodic outbreaks in human and animal populations. Mosquitoes are the primary disease vectors; however, Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) can also spread by direct contact with infected tissues. The transmission cycle is complex, involving humans, livestock, and multiple species of mosquitoes. The epidemiology of RVFV in endemic areas is strongly affected by climatic conditions and environmental variables. In this research, we adapt and use a network-based modeling framework to simulate the transmission of RVFV among hypothetical cattle operations in Kansas, US. Our model considers geo-located livestock populations at the individual level while incorporating the role of mosquito populations and the environment at a coarse resolution. Extensive simulations show the flexibility of our modeling framework when applied to specific scenarios to quantitatively evaluate the efficacy of mosquito control and livestock movement regulations in reducing the extent and intensity of RVF outbreaks in the United States. PMID:27662585

  14. The Environmental Settings of Homo-Sapience Dispersal and the Neolithic Revolution in the Dead Sea - Red Sea Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stein, M.

    2014-12-01

    The Dead Sea-Red Sea Rift accommodated climatic and historic events that have fundamentally influenced the evolution of hominids. Among these developments, the Homo-Sapience (HS) dispersal "out of Africa" and the "Neolithic Revolution (NR)" represent major benchmarks. These developments occurred during the last interglacial and the post-glacial periods when the Red Sea - Levant region was overall arid. Nevertheless, wetter intervals prevailed within these arid periods, allowed the human culture development. The information on these wetter periods is stored in the sedimentary archives that were formed in the Rift. Lake Lisan that expanded all over the Dead Sea- Jordan- Kinnarot basin during the last glacial period retreated and contracted when the ice receded at the northern latitudes. At ~ 14-13 ka BP the lake dropped abruptly and deposited thick sequences of halite. Subsequently, terra rossa soil was re-mobilized from the Judea Mountains and accumulated along the Jordan Valley comprising the Fazael Fm. This soil and the availability of water in the Jordan Valley allow the establishment of the early agriculture settlements of Jericho, Gilgal and Fazael (at ~10-9 ka BP, the "peak" of sapropel S1, when enhance flow of Nile waters arrived to the Mediterranean). During the last interglacial HS dispersal occurs along the Red Sea- Jordan Valley corridor. Evidence for periods of wetness in this rather hyperarid region comes from fringing coral reefs along the Red Sea- Gulf of Aqaba shores, speleothems and travertines in the southern Negev desert -Arava valley and from lake sediments that were recently drilled at the deepest floor of the Dead Sea. All inventories indicate interval of enhanced wetness at ~ 128-122 ka BP, when sapropel S5 occurred. Thus, it appears that the periods of sapropels S1 and S5 were favorite for human culture development along the Red Sea - Jordan rift valley. Nevertheless, these human-development periods terminated abruptly at ~118-116 ka BP and

  15. Post Rift Evolution of the Indian Margin of Southern Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baby, Guillaume; Guillocheau, François; Robin, Cécile; Dall'asta, Massimo

    2016-04-01

    The objective of this study is to discuss the evolution of the South African Plateau along the Indian margin of Southern Africa. Since the classical works of A. du Toit and L.C. King and the improvement of thermochronological methods and numerical models, the question of the uplift of South African Plateau was highly debated with numerous scenarios: early Cretaceous at time of rifting (Van der Beek et al., J.Geophys.Res., 2002), late Cretaceous (Braun et al., Solid Earth, 2014), late Cenozoic (Burke & Gunnell, Geol.Soc.of America, 2008). Limited attention has been paid on the constraints provided by the offshore stratigraphic record of the surrounding margins. The objective of our study is to integrate onshore and offshore data (seismic profiles and industrial wells) to (1) analyse the infill of the whole margin (21°S to 31°S) from its hinterland to the distal deep water basin, (2) to constrain and quantify the vertical movements. We discuss the impact on accommodation and sediments partitioning, and their significance on South African Plateau uplift history. 1. Sedimentary basins of the Indian margin of Southern Africa are related to the break-up of Gondwana during late Jurassic, resulting in rifts and flexural basins. First marine incursions started during early Cretaceous times (oldest marine outcropping sediments are of Barremian age ~128 Ma). The region developed as a normal continental shelf at the Aptian-Albian transition (~113 Ma). 2. The Cretaceous geological history of the basins is characterized by differential uplift and subsidence of the basement, controlled by structures inherited from break up. As example, major early Cretaceous depocenters of the margin are located on the north of Save-Limpopo uplift (Forster, Paleogography, Paleoclimatology, Paleoecology, 1975) showing an eastward drainage pattern, maybe related to a proto Limpopo drainage. Those observations suggest that the escarpment bordering the Bushveld depression is an old relief inherited

  16. Culex pipiens, an Experimental Efficient Vector of West Nile and Rift Valley Fever Viruses in the Maghreb Region

    PubMed Central

    Amraoui, Fadila; Krida, Ghazi; Bouattour, Ali; Rhim, Adel; Daaboub, Jabeur; Harrat, Zoubir; Boubidi, Said-Chawki; Tijane, Mhamed; Sarih, Mhammed; Failloux, Anna-Bella

    2012-01-01

    West Nile fever (WNF) and Rift Valley fever (RVF) are emerging diseases causing epidemics outside their natural range of distribution. West Nile virus (WNV) circulates widely and harmlessly in the old world among birds as amplifying hosts, and horses and humans as accidental dead-end hosts. Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) re-emerges periodically in Africa causing massive outbreaks. In the Maghreb, eco-climatic and entomologic conditions are favourable for WNV and RVFV emergence. Both viruses are transmitted by mosquitoes belonging to the Culex pipiens complex. We evaluated the ability of different populations of Cx. pipiens from North Africa to transmit WNV and the avirulent RVFV Clone 13 strain. Mosquitoes collected in Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia during the summer 2010 were experimentally infected with WNV and RVFV Clone 13 strain at titers of 107.8 and 108.5 plaque forming units/mL, respectively. Disseminated infection and transmission rates were estimated 14–21 days following the exposure to the infectious blood-meal. We show that 14 days after exposure to WNV, all mosquito st developed a high disseminated infection and were able to excrete infectious saliva. However, only 69.2% of mosquito strains developed a disseminated infection with RVFV Clone 13 strain, and among them, 77.8% were able to deliver virus through saliva. Thus, Cx. pipiens from the Maghreb are efficient experimental vectors to transmit WNV and to a lesser extent, RVFV Clone 13 strain. The epidemiologic importance of our findings should be considered in the light of other parameters related to mosquito ecology and biology. PMID:22693557

  17. The Epidemiology of Rift Valley Fever in Mayotte: Insights and Perspectives from 11 Years of Data.

    PubMed

    Métras, Raphaëlle; Cavalerie, Lisa; Dommergues, Laure; Mérot, Philippe; Edmunds, W John; Keeling, Matt J; Cêtre-Sossah, Catherine; Cardinale, Eric

    2016-06-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic arboviral disease that is a threat to human health, animal health and production, mainly in Sub-Saharan Africa. RVF virus dynamics have been poorly studied due to data scarcity. On the island of Mayotte in the Indian Ocean, off the Southeastern African coast, RVF has been present since at least 2004. Several retrospective and prospective serological surveys in livestock have been conducted over eleven years (2004-15). These data are collated and presented here. Temporal patterns of seroprevalence were plotted against time, as well as age-stratified seroprevalence. Results suggest that RVF was already present in 2004-07. An epidemic occurred between 2008 and 2010, with IgG and IgM peak annual prevalences of 36% in 2008-09 (N = 142, n = 51, 95% CI [17-55]) and 41% (N = 96, n = 39, 95% CI [25-56]), respectively. The virus seems to be circulating at a low level since 2011, causing few new infections. In 2015, about 95% of the livestock population was susceptible (IgG annual prevalence was 6% (N = 584, n = 29, 95% CI [3-10])). Monthly rainfall varied a lot (2-540mm), whilst average temperature remained high with little variation (about 25-30°C). This large dataset collected on an insular territory for more than 10 years, suggesting a past epidemic and a current inter-epidemic period, represents a unique opportunity to study RVF dynamics. Further data collection and modelling work may be used to test different scenarios of animal imports and rainfall pattern that could explain the observed epidemiological pattern and estimate the likelihood of a potential re-emergence. PMID:27331402

  18. Seroprevalence of Infections with Dengue, Rift Valley Fever and Chikungunya Viruses in Kenya, 2007

    PubMed Central

    Ochieng, Caroline; Ahenda, Petronella; Vittor, Amy Y.; Nyoka, Raymond; Gikunju, Stella; Wachira, Cyrus; Waiboci, Lilian; Umuro, Mamo; Kim, Andrea A.; Nderitu, Leonard; Juma, Bonventure; Montgomery, Joel M.; Breiman, Robert F.; Fields, Barry

    2015-01-01

    Arthropod-borne viruses are a major constituent of emerging infectious diseases worldwide, but limited data are available on the prevalence, distribution, and risk factors for transmission in Kenya and East Africa. In this study, we used 1,091 HIV-negative blood specimens from the 2007 Kenya AIDS Indicator Survey (KAIS 2007) to test for the presence of IgG antibodies to dengue virus (DENV), chikungunya virus (CHIKV) and Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV).The KAIS 2007 was a national population-based survey conducted by the Government of Kenya to provide comprehensive information needed to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Antibody testing for arboviruses was performed on stored blood specimens from KAIS 2007 through a two-step sandwich IgG ELISA using either commercially available kits or CDC-developed assays. Out of the 1,091 samples tested, 210 (19.2%) were positive for IgG antibodies against at least one of the three arboviruses. DENV was the most common of the three viruses tested (12.5% positive), followed by RVFV and CHIKV (4.5% and 0.97%, respectively). For DENV and RVFV, the participant’s province of residence was significantly associated (P≤.01) with seropositivity. Seroprevalence of DENV and RVFV increased with age, while there was no correlation between province of residence/age and seropositivity for CHIKV. Females had twelve times higher odds of exposure to CHIK as opposed to DENV and RVFV where both males and females had the same odds of exposure. Lack of education was significantly associated with a higher odds of previous infection with either DENV or RVFV (p <0.01). These data show that a number of people are at risk of arbovirus infections depending on their geographic location in Kenya and transmission of these pathogens is greater than previously appreciated. This poses a public health risk, especially for DENV. PMID:26177451

  19. Structure of the Rift Valley fever virus nucleocapsid protein reveals another architecture for RNA encapsidation

    SciTech Connect

    Raymond, Donald D.; Piper, Mary E.; Gerrard, Sonja R.; Smith, Janet L.

    2010-07-13

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a negative-sense RNA virus (genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae) that infects livestock and humans and is endemic to sub-Saharan Africa. Like all negative-sense viruses, the segmented RNA genome of RVFV is encapsidated by a nucleocapsid protein (N). The 1.93-{angstrom} crystal structure of RVFV N and electron micrographs of ribonucleoprotein (RNP) reveal an encapsidated genome of substantially different organization than in other negative-sense RNA virus families. The RNP polymer, viewed in electron micrographs of both virus RNP and RNP reconstituted from purified N with a defined RNA, has an extended structure without helical symmetry. N-RNA species of {approx}100-kDa apparent molecular weight and heterogeneous composition were obtained by exhaustive ribonuclease treatment of virus RNP, by recombinant expression of N, and by reconstitution from purified N and an RNA oligomer. RNA-free N, obtained by denaturation and refolding, has a novel all-helical fold that is compact and well ordered at both the N and C termini. Unlike N of other negative-sense RNA viruses, RVFV N has no positively charged surface cleft for RNA binding and no protruding termini or loops to stabilize a defined N-RNA oligomer or RNP helix. A potential protein interaction site was identified in a conserved hydrophobic pocket. The nonhelical appearance of phlebovirus RNP, the heterogeneous {approx}100-kDa N-RNA multimer, and the N fold differ substantially from the RNP and N of other negative-sense RNA virus families and provide valuable insights into the structure of the encapsidated phlebovirus genome.

  20. The Epidemiology of Rift Valley Fever in Mayotte: Insights and Perspectives from 11 Years of Data

    PubMed Central

    Métras, Raphaëlle; Cavalerie, Lisa; Dommergues, Laure; Mérot, Philippe; Edmunds, W. John; Keeling, Matt J.; Cêtre-Sossah, Catherine; Cardinale, Eric

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic arboviral disease that is a threat to human health, animal health and production, mainly in Sub-Saharan Africa. RVF virus dynamics have been poorly studied due to data scarcity. On the island of Mayotte in the Indian Ocean, off the Southeastern African coast, RVF has been present since at least 2004. Several retrospective and prospective serological surveys in livestock have been conducted over eleven years (2004–15). These data are collated and presented here. Temporal patterns of seroprevalence were plotted against time, as well as age-stratified seroprevalence. Results suggest that RVF was already present in 2004–07. An epidemic occurred between 2008 and 2010, with IgG and IgM peak annual prevalences of 36% in 2008–09 (N = 142, n = 51, 95% CI [17–55]) and 41% (N = 96, n = 39, 95% CI [25–56]), respectively. The virus seems to be circulating at a low level since 2011, causing few new infections. In 2015, about 95% of the livestock population was susceptible (IgG annual prevalence was 6% (N = 584, n = 29, 95% CI [3–10])). Monthly rainfall varied a lot (2–540mm), whilst average temperature remained high with little variation (about 25–30°C). This large dataset collected on an insular territory for more than 10 years, suggesting a past epidemic and a current inter-epidemic period, represents a unique opportunity to study RVF dynamics. Further data collection and modelling work may be used to test different scenarios of animal imports and rainfall pattern that could explain the observed epidemiological pattern and estimate the likelihood of a potential re-emergence. PMID:27331402

  1. The Epidemiology of Rift Valley Fever in Mayotte: Insights and Perspectives from 11 Years of Data.

    PubMed

    Métras, Raphaëlle; Cavalerie, Lisa; Dommergues, Laure; Mérot, Philippe; Edmunds, W John; Keeling, Matt J; Cêtre-Sossah, Catherine; Cardinale, Eric

    2016-06-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic arboviral disease that is a threat to human health, animal health and production, mainly in Sub-Saharan Africa. RVF virus dynamics have been poorly studied due to data scarcity. On the island of Mayotte in the Indian Ocean, off the Southeastern African coast, RVF has been present since at least 2004. Several retrospective and prospective serological surveys in livestock have been conducted over eleven years (2004-15). These data are collated and presented here. Temporal patterns of seroprevalence were plotted against time, as well as age-stratified seroprevalence. Results suggest that RVF was already present in 2004-07. An epidemic occurred between 2008 and 2010, with IgG and IgM peak annual prevalences of 36% in 2008-09 (N = 142, n = 51, 95% CI [17-55]) and 41% (N = 96, n = 39, 95% CI [25-56]), respectively. The virus seems to be circulating at a low level since 2011, causing few new infections. In 2015, about 95% of the livestock population was susceptible (IgG annual prevalence was 6% (N = 584, n = 29, 95% CI [3-10])). Monthly rainfall varied a lot (2-540mm), whilst average temperature remained high with little variation (about 25-30°C). This large dataset collected on an insular territory for more than 10 years, suggesting a past epidemic and a current inter-epidemic period, represents a unique opportunity to study RVF dynamics. Further data collection and modelling work may be used to test different scenarios of animal imports and rainfall pattern that could explain the observed epidemiological pattern and estimate the likelihood of a potential re-emergence.

  2. Seroprevalence of Infections with Dengue, Rift Valley Fever and Chikungunya Viruses in Kenya, 2007.

    PubMed

    Ochieng, Caroline; Ahenda, Petronella; Vittor, Amy Y; Nyoka, Raymond; Gikunju, Stella; Wachira, Cyrus; Waiboci, Lilian; Umuro, Mamo; Kim, Andrea A; Nderitu, Leonard; Juma, Bonventure; Montgomery, Joel M; Breiman, Robert F; Fields, Barry

    2015-01-01

    Arthropod-borne viruses are a major constituent of emerging infectious diseases worldwide, but limited data are available on the prevalence, distribution, and risk factors for transmission in Kenya and East Africa. In this study, we used 1,091 HIV-negative blood specimens from the 2007 Kenya AIDS Indicator Survey (KAIS 2007) to test for the presence of IgG antibodies to dengue virus (DENV), chikungunya virus (CHIKV) and Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV).The KAIS 2007 was a national population-based survey conducted by the Government of Kenya to provide comprehensive information needed to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Antibody testing for arboviruses was performed on stored blood specimens from KAIS 2007 through a two-step sandwich IgG ELISA using either commercially available kits or CDC-developed assays. Out of the 1,091 samples tested, 210 (19.2%) were positive for IgG antibodies against at least one of the three arboviruses. DENV was the most common of the three viruses tested (12.5% positive), followed by RVFV and CHIKV (4.5% and 0.97%, respectively). For DENV and RVFV, the participant's province of residence was significantly associated (P≤.01) with seropositivity. Seroprevalence of DENV and RVFV increased with age, while there was no correlation between province of residence/age and seropositivity for CHIKV. Females had twelve times higher odds of exposure to CHIK as opposed to DENV and RVFV where both males and females had the same odds of exposure. Lack of education was significantly associated with a higher odds of previous infection with either DENV or RVFV (p <0.01). These data show that a number of people are at risk of arbovirus infections depending on their geographic location in Kenya and transmission of these pathogens is greater than previously appreciated. This poses a public health risk, especially for DENV.

  3. Characterizing the effect of Bortezomib on Rift Valley Fever Virus multiplication.

    PubMed

    Keck, Forrest; Amaya, Moushimi; Kehn-Hall, Kylene; Roberts, Brian; Bailey, Charles; Narayanan, Aarthi

    2015-08-01

    Rift Valley Fever Virus (RVFV) belongs to the family Bunyaviridae and is a known cause of epizootics and epidemics in Africa and the Middle East. With no FDA approved therapeutics available to treat RVFV infection, understanding the interactions between the virus and the infected host is crucial to developing novel therapeutic strategies. Here, we investigated the requirement of the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) for the establishment of a productive RVFV infection. It was previously shown that the UPS plays a central role in RVFV multiplication involving degradation of PKR and p62 subunit of TFIIH. Using the FDA-approved proteasome inhibitor Bortezomib, we observed robust inhibition of intracellular and extracellular viral loads. Bortezomib treatment did not affect the nuclear/cytoplasmic distribution of the non-structural S-segment protein (NSs); however, the ability of NSs to form nuclear filaments was abolished as a result of Bortezomib treatment. In silico ubiquitination prediction analysis predicted that known NSs interactors (SAP30, YY1, and mSin3A) have multiple putative ubiquitination sites, while NSs itself was not predicted to be ubiquitinated. Immunoprecipitation studies indicated a decrease in interaction between SAP30 - NSs, and mSin3A - NSs in the context of Bortezomib treatment. This decrease in association between SAP30 - NSs also correlated with a decrease in the ubiquitination status of SAP30 with Bortezomib treatment. Bortezomib treatment, however, resulted in increased ubiquitination of mSin3A, suggesting that Bortezomib dynamically affects the ubiquitination status of host proteins that interact with NSs. Finally, we observed that expression of interferon beta (IFN-β) was increased in Bortezomib treated cells which indicated that the cellular antiviral mechanism was revived as a result of treatment and may contribute to control of viral multiplication.

  4. Seismic Migration Imaging of the Lithosphere beneath the Afar Rift System, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, T. T. Y.; Chen, C. W.; Rychert, C.; Harmon, N.

    2015-12-01

    The Afar Rift system in east Africa is an ideal natural laboratory for investigating the incipient continental rifting, an essential component of plate tectonics. The Afar Rift is situated at the triple junction of three rifts, namely the southern Red Sea Rift, Gulf of Aden Rift and Main Ethiopian Rift (MER). The ongoing continental rifting at Afar transitions to seafloor spreading toward the southern Red Sea. The tectonic evolution of Afar is thought to be influenced by a mantle plume, but how the plume affects and interacts with the Afar lithosphere remains elusive. In this study, we use array seismic data to produce high-resolution migration images of the Afar lithosphere from scattered teleseismic wavefields to shed light on the lithospheric structure and associated tectonic processes. Our preliminary results indicate the presence of lithospheric seismic discontinuities with depth variation across the Afar region. Beneath the MER axis, we detect a pronounced discontinuity at 55 km depth, characterized by downward fast-to-slow velocity contrast, which appears to abruptly deepen to 75 km depth to the northern flank of MER. This discontinuity may be interpreted as the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary. Beneath the Ethiopian Plateau, on the other hand, a dipping structure with velocity increase is identified at 70-90 km depth. Further synthesis of observations from seismic tomography, receiver functions, and seismic anisotropy in the Afar region will offer better understanding of tectonic significance of the lithospheric discontinuities.

  5. Astronomically forced climate change in the Kenyan Rift Valley 2.7-2.55 Ma: implications for the evolution of early hominin ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Kingston, John D; Deino, Alan L; Edgar, Robert K; Hill, Andrew

    2007-11-01

    Global climate change, linked to astronomical forcing factors, has been implicated in faunal evolutionary change in equatorial Africa, including the origin and diversification of hominin lineages. Empirical terrestrial data demonstrating that orbital forcing has a significant effect, or is detectable, at early hominin sites in equatorial continental interiors during the Pliocene, however, remain limited. Sedimentation patterns in the Baringo Basin within the Central Kenyan Rift Valley between ca. 2.7 and 2.55 Ma, controlled by climatic factors, provide a detailed paleoenvironmental record spanning 35 fossil vertebrate localities, including three hominin sites. The succession includes a sequence of diatomites that record rhythmic cycling of major freshwater lake systems consistent with approximately 23-kyr Milankovitch precessional periodicity. The temporal framework of shifting precipitation patterns, relative to Pliocene insolation curves, implicate African monsoonal climatic control and indicate that climatic fluctuations in Rift Valley ecosystems were paced by global climatic change documented in marine cores. These data provide direct evidence of orbitally mediated environmental change at Pliocene Rift Valley hominin fossil localities, providing a unique opportunity to assess the evolutionary effect of short-term climatic flux on late Pliocene East African terrestrial communities.

  6. Sedimentary deposits in response to rift geometry in Malawi, Africa

    SciTech Connect

    Bishop, M.G. )

    1991-03-01

    Sedimentary deposits of the Malawi continental rift basin are a direct result of topography and tectonics unique to rift structure. Recent models describe rifts as asymmetric half-graben connected in series by transfer of accommodation zones. Half-graben consist of roughly parallel, tilted fault blocks stepping up from the bounding fault zone where maximum subsidence occurs. The rift becomes a local baselevel and depocenter as regional drainage is shed away by the rift shoulders. Most of the sediments are derived locally due to internal drainage of connected basins, individual basins, and individual fault blocks. The patterns of sedimentation and facies associations depend on structural position at both fault block and half-graben scales. Drainage is directed and dammed by tilted fault blocks. Forward-tilted fault blocks form basinward-thickening sediment wedges filled with facies of axial fluvial systems, alluvial fault-scarp fans, and ponded swamp and lake deposits. These deposits are asymmetrically shifted toward the controlling fault and onlap the upthrown side of the block, ordinarily the site of erosion or nondeposition. Rivers entering the lake on back tilted fault blocks form large deltas resulting in basinward fining and thinning sediment wedges. Lacustrine, nearshore, shoreline, and lake shore plain deposits over multiple fault blocks record lake levels, water chemistry, and tectonic episodes. Tectonic movement periodically changes the basin depth, configuration, and baselevel. This movement results in widespread unconformities deposition and reworking of sediments within the rift.

  7. Serological surveillance studies confirm the Rift Valley fever virus free status in South Korea.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyun Joo; Park, Jee-Yong; Jeoung, Hye-Young; Yeh, Jung-Yong; Cho, Yun-Sang; Choi, Jeong-Soo; Lee, Ji-Youn; Cho, In-Soo; Yoo, Han-Sang

    2015-10-01

    Rift Valley fever is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease of domestic ruminants. This disease causes abortions in pregnant animals, and it has a high mortality rate in newborn animals. Recently, a Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) outbreak in the Arabian Peninsula increased its potential spread to new regions worldwide. In non-endemic or disease-free countries, early detection and surveillance are important for preventing the introduction of RVFV. In this study, a serological surveillance was conducted to detect antibodies against RVFV. A total of 2382 serum samples from goats and cattle were randomly collected from nine areas in South Korea from 2011 to 2013. These samples were tested for antibodies against RVFV, using commercial ELISA kits. None of the goats and cattle were positive for antibodies against RVFV. This finding suggests that this disease is not present in South Korea, and furthermore presents the evidence of the RVFV-free status of this country.

  8. Rift Valley fever and a new paradigm of research and development for zoonotic disease control.

    PubMed

    Dar, Osman; McIntyre, Sabrina; Hogarth, Sue; Heymann, David

    2013-02-01

    Although Rift Valley fever is a disease that, through its wider societal effects, disproportionately affects vulnerable communities with poor resilience to economic and environmental challenge, Rift Valley fever virus has since its discovery in 1931 been neglected by major global donors and disease control programs. We describe recent outbreaks affecting humans and animals and discuss the serious socioeconomic effects on the communities affected and the slow pace of development of new vaccines. We also discuss the mixed global response, which has largely been fueled by the classification of the virus as a potential bioterrorism agent and its potential to migrate beyond its traditional eastern African boundaries. We argue for a refocus of strategy with increased global collaboration and a greater sense of urgency and investment that focuses on an equity-based approach in which funding and research are prioritized by need, inspired by principles of equity and social justice.

  9. Marburg, Ebola and Rift Valley Fever virus antibodies in East African primates.

    PubMed

    Johnson, B K; Gitau, L G; Gichogo, A; Tukei, P M; Else, J G; Suleman, M A; Kimani, R; Sayer, P D

    1982-01-01

    Sera from 464 primates held at four institutes in Kenya were tested by indirect immunofluorescence for the presence of antibodies against Marburg, Ebola, Congo haemorrhagic fever, Rift Valley fever and Lassa viruses. Four of 136 vervet monkeys were positive for Marburg virus antibodies and three of 184 baboons had antibodies against Ebola virus. One baboon was positive for Marburg virus antibodies. Two vervet monkeys, three baboons and one grivet monkey (of 56 tested) had antibodies against Rift Valley fever virus. No Congo or Lassa virus antibodies were detected. A sample of 88 sera of more arboreal primates (Sykes, blue and colobus monkeys) were negative against all five antigens, as were sera from 58 staff members of the institutes who worked with or near the animals.

  10. Rift Valley fever virus: A review of diagnosis and vaccination, and implications for emergence in Europe.

    PubMed

    Mansfield, Karen L; Banyard, Ashley C; McElhinney, Lorraine; Johnson, Nicholas; Horton, Daniel L; Hernández-Triana, Luis M; Fooks, Anthony R

    2015-10-13

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne virus, and is the causative agent of Rift Valley fever (RVF), a zoonotic disease characterised by an increased incidence of abortion or foetal malformation in ruminants. Infection in humans can also lead to clinical manifestations that in severe cases cause encephalitis or haemorrhagic fever. The virus is endemic throughout much of the African continent. However, the emergence of RVFV in the Middle East, northern Egypt and the Comoros Archipelago has highlighted that the geographical range of RVFV may be increasing, and has led to the concern that an incursion into Europe may occur. At present, there is a limited range of veterinary vaccines available for use in endemic areas, and there is no licensed human vaccine. In this review, the methods available for diagnosis of RVFV infection, the current status of vaccine development and possible implications for RVFV emergence in Europe, are discussed.

  11. Rift Valley Fever and a New Paradigm of Research and Development for Zoonotic Disease Control

    PubMed Central

    McIntyre, Sabrina; Hogarth, Sue; Heymann, David

    2013-01-01

    Although Rift Valley fever is a disease that, through its wider societal effects, disproportionately affects vulnerable communities with poor resilience to economic and environmental challenge, Rift Valley fever virus has since its discovery in 1931 been neglected by major global donors and disease control programs. We describe recent outbreaks affecting humans and animals and discuss the serious socioeconomic effects on the communities affected and the slow pace of development of new vaccines. We also discuss the mixed global response, which has largely been fueled by the classification of the virus as a potential bioterrorism agent and its potential to migrate beyond its traditional eastern African boundaries. We argue for a refocus of strategy with increased global collaboration and a greater sense of urgency and investment that focuses on an equity-based approach in which funding and research are prioritized by need, inspired by principles of equity and social justice. PMID:23347653

  12. Rift Valley fever and a new paradigm of research and development for zoonotic disease control.

    PubMed

    Dar, Osman; McIntyre, Sabrina; Hogarth, Sue; Heymann, David

    2013-02-01

    Although Rift Valley fever is a disease that, through its wider societal effects, disproportionately affects vulnerable communities with poor resilience to economic and environmental challenge, Rift Valley fever virus has since its discovery in 1931 been neglected by major global donors and disease control programs. We describe recent outbreaks affecting humans and animals and discuss the serious socioeconomic effects on the communities affected and the slow pace of development of new vaccines. We also discuss the mixed global response, which has largely been fueled by the classification of the virus as a potential bioterrorism agent and its potential to migrate beyond its traditional eastern African boundaries. We argue for a refocus of strategy with increased global collaboration and a greater sense of urgency and investment that focuses on an equity-based approach in which funding and research are prioritized by need, inspired by principles of equity and social justice. PMID:23347653

  13. The impact of climate change on the epidemiology and control of Rift Valley fever.

    PubMed

    Martin, V; Chevalier, V; Ceccato, P; Anyamba, A; De Simone, L; Lubroth, J; de La Rocque, S; Domenech, J

    2008-08-01

    Climate change is likely to change the frequency of extreme weather events, such as tropical cyclones, floods, droughts and hurricanes, and may destabilise and weaken the ecosystem services upon which human society depends. Climate change is also expected to affect animal, human and plant health via indirect pathways: it is likely that the geography of infectious diseases and pests will be altered, including the distribution of vector-borne diseases, such as Rift Valley fever, yellow fever, malaria and dengue, which are highly sensitive to climatic conditions. Extreme weather events might then create the necessary conditions for Rift Valley fever to expand its geographical range northwards and cross the Mediterranean and Arabian seas, with an unexpected impact on the animal and human health of newly affected countries. Strengthening global, regional and national early warning systems is crucial, as are co-ordinated research programmes and subsequent prevention and intervention measures.

  14. Role of mass wasting processes in the modification of oceanic rift valley morphology

    SciTech Connect

    Keith, D.J.; Fox, P.J.; Karson, J. A.

    1985-01-01

    During the last eight years field investigations using the high resolution capabilities of submersibles and deep-towed cameras have been conducted along the rift valley of the Mid-Cayman Rise, the western and eastern intersections of the Kane Transform Fault and the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and the eastern intersection of the Oceanographer Transform Fault. These 3 sites are representative of the range of tectonic environments which are characteristic of slowly accreting plate boundaries. Photographic and observational data collected from within these natural laboratories reveal important geomorphic information concerning the temporal and spatial evolution of volcanic constructional and fault-bounded terrain in response to mass wasting processes. The results of this investigation indicate that sedimentary processes significantly influence the development of oceanic lithosphere soon after its creation and continues to do so with increasing geologic age out to approximately 2 m.y. The data indicate that the rift valley floor distal from transform faults is dominated by a hummocky, volcanic morphology that is rapidly degraded by hyaloclastic mass wasting activity. With the evolution of the rift walls into the rift mountains, photographic data indicates that the processes associated with dislodgement and gravitational transport do not cease to operate but work much more infrequently relative to the tectonically active lower slopes.

  15. A Hierarchical Network Approach for Modeling Rift Valley Fever Epidemics with Applications in North America

    PubMed Central

    Xue, Ling; Cohnstaedt, Lee W.; Scott, H. Morgan; Scoglio, Caterina

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever is a vector-borne zoonotic disease which causes high morbidity and mortality in livestock. In the event Rift Valley fever virus is introduced to the United States or other non-endemic areas, understanding the potential patterns of spread and the areas at risk based on disease vectors and hosts will be vital for developing mitigation strategies. Presented here is a general network-based mathematical model of Rift Valley fever. Given a lack of empirical data on disease vector species and their vector competence, this discrete time epidemic model uses stochastic parameters following several PERT distributions to model the dynamic interactions between hosts and likely North American mosquito vectors in dispersed geographic areas. Spatial effects and climate factors are also addressed in the model. The model is applied to a large directed asymmetric network of 3,621 nodes based on actual farms to examine a hypothetical introduction to some counties of Texas, an important ranching area in the United States of America. The nodes of the networks represent livestock farms, livestock markets, and feedlots, and the links represent cattle movements and mosquito diffusion between different nodes. Cattle and mosquito (Aedes and Culex) populations are treated with different contact networks to assess virus propagation. Rift Valley fever virus spread is assessed under various initial infection conditions (infected mosquito eggs, adults or cattle). A surprising trend is fewer initial infectious organisms result in a longer delay before a larger and more prolonged outbreak. The delay is likely caused by a lack of herd immunity while the infection expands geographically before becoming an epidemic involving many dispersed farms and animals almost simultaneously. Cattle movement between farms is a large driver of virus expansion, thus quarantines can be efficient mitigation strategy to prevent further geographic spread. PMID:23667453

  16. Tectonostratigraphic development of the Interior Sudan rifts, Central Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McHargue, Tim R.; Heidrick, Tom L.; Livingston, Jack E.

    1992-10-01

    In the Muglad, Melut and Blue Nile rift basins of Interior Sudan three major episodes of rifting, concomitant subsidence and nonmarine/nonvolcanic sedimentation are recognized. These three rifting cycles, which spanned 140 to 95 Ma (Fl), 95 to 65 Ma (F2), and 65 to 30 Ma (F3), resulted in the accumulation of up to 5400, 4200 and 5400 m of sediments, respectively. In the Muglad Basin, the best known and largest of the Sudan rift basins, each rifting cycle consists of (1) a basal sandstone unit (at least near rift margins), that is followed by (2) an upward coarsening section of lacustrine shale grading through marginal lacustrine mudstone and sandstone into fluvial mudstone and sandstone, and (3) a capping blanket of fluvial and alluvial sandstone. The shale-dominated portions of these cycles were deposited in a closed-drainage basin during active faulting. The fluvial and alluvial blanket sands were deposited in an open-drainage basin during the thermal sag phase following each tectonic cycle. The Early Cretaceous F1 intracontinental rifts of Interior Sudan were linked to major rifts/spreading centres in the Proto-South Atlantic by the dextral WSW-trending Central African Shear Zone and to the Indian Ocean via the NW-trending Anza rift in Kenya. In the Muglad Basin, F1 deformation involved high strain rates, rapid syn-rift crustal stretching and subsidence, and the formation of deep, fault-bounded tensional and transtensional pull-apart basins. During the F2 and F3 deformations, the rates of subsidence and stretching were much lower and were focused within smaller geographic areas. Structural elements include asymmetric half-grabens and less common full-grabens with central highs. The three superimposed tectonic episodes resulted in the subsidence of NNW- to NW-trending rift sub-basins; this gave rise to a wide variety of normal fault geometries, displacements, and growth histories. Planar domino-style and listric normal F1 fault arrays are modeled. The rotated F1

  17. Kinematics of the Ethiopian Rift and Absolute motion of Africa and Somalia Plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh, A. A.; Cuffaro, M.; Doglioni, C.

    2013-12-01

    The Ethiopian Rift (ER), in the northern part of East African Rift System (EARS), forms a boundary zone accommodating differential motion between Africa and Somalia Plates. Its orientation was influenced by the inherited Pan-African collisional system and related lithospheric fabric. We present the kinematics of ER derived from compilation of geodetic velocities, focal mechanism inversions, structural data analysis, and construction of geological profiles. GPS velocity field shows a systematic eastward magnitude increase in NE direction in the central ER. In the same region, incremental extensional strain axes recorded by earthquake focal mechanism and fault slip inversion show ≈N1000E orientation. This deviation between GPS velocity trajectories and orientation of incremental extensional strain is developed due to left lateral transtensional deformation. This interpretation is consistent with the en-échelon pattern of tensional and transtensional faults, the distribution of the volcanic centers, and the asymmetry of the rift itself. Small amount of vertical axis blocks rotation, sinistral strike slip faults and dyke intrusions in the rift accommodate the transtensional deformation. We analyzed the kinematics of ER relative to Deep and Shallow Hot Spot Reference Frames (HSRF). Comparison between the two reference frames shows different kinematics in ER and also Africa and Somalia plate motion both in magnitude and direction. Plate spreading direction in shallow HSRF (i.e. the source of the plumes locates in the asthenosphere) and the trend of ER deviate by about 27°. Shearing and extension across the plate boundary zone contribute both to the style of deformation and overall kinematics in the rift. We conclude that the observed long wavelength kinematics and tectonics are consequences of faster SW ward motion of Africa than Somalia in the shallow HSRF. This reference frame seems more consistent with the geophysical and geological constraints in the Rift. The

  18. Rift valley Fever in Kruger national park: do buffalo play a role in the inter-epidemic circulation of virus?

    PubMed

    Beechler, B R; Bengis, R; Swanepoel, R; Paweska, J T; Kemp, A; van Vuren, P Jansen; Joubert, J; Ezenwa, V O; Jolles, A E

    2015-02-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic mosquito-borne virus disease of livestock and wild ruminants that has been identified as a risk for international spread. Typically, the disease occurs in geographically limited outbreaks associated with high rainfall events and can cause massive losses of livestock. It is unclear how RVF virus persists during inter-epidemic periods but cryptic cycling of the virus in wildlife populations may play a role. We investigated the role that free-living African buffalo (Syncerus caffer caffer) might play in inter-epidemic circulation of the virus and looked for geographic, age and sex patterns of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) infection in African buffalo. Buffalo serum samples were collected (n = 1615) in Kruger National Park (KNP), South Africa, during a period of 1996-2007 and tested for antibodies to RVF. We found that older animals were more likely to be seropositive for anti-RVFV antibody than younger animals, but sex was not correlated with the likelihood of being anti-RVFV antibody positive. We also found geographic variation within KNP; herds in the south were more likely to have acquired anti-RVFV antibody than herds farther north - which could be driven by host or vector ecology. In all years of the study between 1996 and 2007, we found young buffalo (under 2 years of age) that were seropositive for anti-RVFV antibody, with prevalence ranging between 0 and 27% each year, indicating probable circulation. In addition, we also conducted a 4-year longitudinal study on 227 initially RVFV seronegative buffalo to look for evidence of seroconversion outside known RVF outbreaks within our study period (2008-2012). In the longitudinal study, we found five individuals that seroconverted from anti-RVFV antibody negative to anti-RVFV antibody positive, outside of any detected outbreak. Overall, our results provide evidence of long-term undetected circulation of RVFV in the buffalo population.

  19. Comprehensive Phylogenetic Reconstructions of Rift Valley Fever Virus: The 2010 Northern Mauritania Outbreak in the Camelus dromedarius Species

    PubMed Central

    Lo, Modou M.; Thiongane, Yaya; Diop, Mariame; Isselmou, Katia; Doumbia, Baba; Baba, Mohammed Ould; El Arbi, Ahmed S.; Lancelot, Renaud; Kane, Y.; Albina, Emmanuel; Cêtre-Sossah, Catherine

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Rift valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne disease of domestic and wild ruminants caused by RVF virus (RVFV), a phlebovirus (Bunyaviridae). RVF is widespread in Sub-Saharan Africa. In September of 2010, an RVF outbreak occurred in northern Mauritania involving mass abortions in small ruminants and camels (Camelus dromedarius) and at least 63 human clinical cases, including 13 deaths. In camels, serological prevalence was 27.5–38.5% (95% confidence interval, n=279). For the first time, clinical signs other than abortions were reported in this species, including hemorrhagic septicemia and severe respiratory distress in animals. We assessed the presence of RVFV in camel sera sampled during this outbreak and generated whole-genome sequences of RVFV to determine the possible origin of this RVFV strain. Phylogenetic analyses suggested a shared ancestor between the Mauritania 2010 strain and strains from Zimbabwe (2269, 763, and 2373), Kenya (155_57 and 56IB8), South Africa (Kakamas, SA75 and SA51VanWyck), Uganda (Entebbe), and other strains linked to the 1987 outbreak of RVF in Mauritania (OS1, OS3, OS8, and OS9). PMID:25514121

  20. Inter-epidemic and between-season persistence of rift valley fever: vertical transmission or cryptic cycling?

    PubMed

    Manore, C A; Beechler, B R

    2015-02-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an emerging zoonotic mosquito-borne infectious disease that has been identified as a risk for spread to other continents and can cause mass livestock mortality. In equatorial Africa, outbreaks of RVF are associated with high rainfall, when vector populations are at their highest. It is, however, unclear how RVF virus persists during the inter-epidemic periods and between seasons. Understanding inter-epidemic persistence as well as the role of vectors and hosts is paramount to creating effective management programmes for RVF control. We created a mathematical model for the spread of RVF and used the model to explore different scenarios of persistence including vertical transmission and alternate wildlife hosts, with a case study on buffalo in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Our results suggest that RVF persistence is a delicate balance between numerous species of susceptible hosts, mosquito species, vertical transmission and environmental stochasticity. Further investigations should not focus on a single species, but should instead consider a myriad of susceptible host species when seeking to understand disease dynamics.

  1. Statistical Modeling of the Abundance of Vectors of West African Rift Valley Fever in Barkédji, Senegal

    PubMed Central

    Talla, Cheikh; Diallo, Diawo; Dia, Ibrahima; Ba, Yamar; Ndione, Jacques-André; Sall, Amadou Alpha; Morse, Andy; Diop, Aliou; Diallo, Mawlouth

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever is an emerging mosquito-borne disease that represents a threat to human and animal health. The exophilic and exophagic behavior of the two main vector in West Africa (Aedes vexans and Culex poicilipes), adverse events post-vaccination, and lack of treatment, render ineffective the disease control. Therefore it is essential to develop an information system that facilitates decision-making and the implementation of adaptation strategies. In East Africa, RVF outbreaks are linked with abnormally high rainfall, and can be predicted up to 5 months in advance by modeling approaches using climatic and environmental parameters. However, the application of these models in West Africa remains unsatisfactory due to a lack of data for animal and human cases and differences in the dynamics of the disease emergence and the vector species involved in transmission. Models have been proposed for West Africa but they were restricted to rainfall impact analysis without a spatial dimension. In this study, we developed a mixed Bayesian statistical model to evaluate the effects of climatic and ecological determinants on the spatiotemporal dynamics of the two main vectors. Adult mosquito abundance data were generated from July to December every fortnight in 2005–2006 at 79 sites, including temporary ponds, bare soils, shrubby savannah, wooded savannah, steppes, and villages in the Barkédji area. The results demonstrate the importance of environmental factors and weather conditions for predicting mosquito abundance. The rainfall and minimum temperature were positively correlated with the abundance of Cx. poicilipes, whereas the maximum temperature had negative effects. The rainfall was negatively correlated with the abundance of Ae. vexans. After combining land cover classes, weather conditions, and vector abundance, our model was used to predict the areas and periods with the highest risks of vector pressure. This information could support decision-making to improve

  2. Statistical modeling of the abundance of vectors of West African Rift Valley fever in Barkédji, Senegal.

    PubMed

    Talla, Cheikh; Diallo, Diawo; Dia, Ibrahima; Ba, Yamar; Ndione, Jacques-André; Sall, Amadou Alpha; Morse, Andy; Diop, Aliou; Diallo, Mawlouth

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever is an emerging mosquito-borne disease that represents a threat to human and animal health. The exophilic and exophagic behavior of the two main vector in West Africa (Aedes vexans and Culex poicilipes), adverse events post-vaccination, and lack of treatment, render ineffective the disease control. Therefore it is essential to develop an information system that facilitates decision-making and the implementation of adaptation strategies. In East Africa, RVF outbreaks are linked with abnormally high rainfall, and can be predicted up to 5 months in advance by modeling approaches using climatic and environmental parameters. However, the application of these models in West Africa remains unsatisfactory due to a lack of data for animal and human cases and differences in the dynamics of the disease emergence and the vector species involved in transmission. Models have been proposed for West Africa but they were restricted to rainfall impact analysis without a spatial dimension. In this study, we developed a mixed Bayesian statistical model to evaluate the effects of climatic and ecological determinants on the spatiotemporal dynamics of the two main vectors. Adult mosquito abundance data were generated from July to December every fortnight in 2005-2006 at 79 sites, including temporary ponds, bare soils, shrubby savannah, wooded savannah, steppes, and villages in the Barkédji area. The results demonstrate the importance of environmental factors and weather conditions for predicting mosquito abundance. The rainfall and minimum temperature were positively correlated with the abundance of Cx. poicilipes, whereas the maximum temperature had negative effects. The rainfall was negatively correlated with the abundance of Ae. vexans. After combining land cover classes, weather conditions, and vector abundance, our model was used to predict the areas and periods with the highest risks of vector pressure. This information could support decision-making to improve RVF

  3. Current kinematics and dynamics of Africa and the East African Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stamps, D. S.; Flesch, L. M.; Calais, E.; Ghosh, A.

    2014-06-01

    Although the East African Rift System (EARS) is an archetype continental rift, the forces driving its evolution remain debated. Some contend buoyancy forces arising from gravitational potential energy (GPE) gradients within the lithosphere drive rifting. Others argue for a major role of the diverging mantle flow associated with the African Superplume. Here we quantify the forces driving present-day continental rifting in East Africa by (1) solving the depth averaged 3-D force balance equations for 3-D deviatoric stress associated with GPE, (2) inverting for a stress field boundary condition that we interpret as originating from large-scale mantle tractions, (3) calculating dynamic velocities due to lithospheric buoyancy forces, lateral viscosity variations, and velocity boundary conditions, and (4) calculating dynamic velocities that result from the stress response of horizontal mantle tractions acting on a viscous lithosphere in Africa and surroundings. We find deviatoric stress associated with lithospheric GPE gradients are ˜8-20 MPa in EARS, and the minimum deviatoric stress resulting from basal shear is ˜1.6 MPa along the EARS. Our dynamic velocity calculations confirm that a force contribution from GPE gradients alone is sufficient to drive Nubia-Somalia divergence and that additional forcing from horizontal mantle tractions overestimates surface kinematics. Stresses from GPE gradients appear sufficient to sustain present-day rifting in East Africa; however, they are lower than the vertically integrated strength of the lithosphere along most of the EARS. This indicates additional processes are required to initiate rupture of continental lithosphere, but once it is initiated, lithospheric buoyancy forces are enough to maintain rifting.

  4. The Importance of Magmatic Fluids in Continental Rifting in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muirhead, J.; Kattenhorn, S. A.; Ebinger, C. J.; Lee, H.; Fischer, T. P.; Roecker, S. W.; Kianji, G.

    2015-12-01

    The breakup of strong continental lithosphere requires more than far-field tectonic forces. Growing evidence for early-stage cratonic rift zones points to the importance of heat, magma and volatile transfer in driving lithospheric strength reduction. The relative contributions of these processes are fundamental to our understanding of continental rifting. We present a synthesis of results from geological, geochemical and geophysical studies in one of the most seismically and volcanically active sectors of the East African Rift (Kenya-Tanzania border) to investigate the role of fluids during early-stage rifting (<10 Ma). Xenolith data indicate that rifting initiated in initially thick lithosphere. Diffuse soil CO2 flux maxima occur in the vicinity of faults, with carbon isotope values exhibiting a mantle-derived signature. These faults feed aligned sets of hydrothermal springs, which have N2-He-Ar relative abundances also indicating a mantle-derived source. Geochemical and surface faulting information are integrated with subsurface imaging and fault kinematic data derived from the 38-station CRAFTI broadband seismic array. Teleseismic and abundant local earthquakes enable assessment of the state-of-stress and b-values as a function of depth. High Vp/Vs ratios and tomographic imaging suggest the presence of fluids in the crust, with high pore fluid pressures driving failure at lower tectonic stress. Together, these cross-disciplinary data provide compelling evidence that early-stage rifting in East Africa is assisted by fluids exsolved from deep magma bodies, some of which are imaged in the lower crust. We assert that the flux of deep magmatic fluids during rift initiation plays a key role in weakening lithosphere and localizing strain. High surface gas fluxes, fault-fed hydrothermal springs and persistent seismicity highlight the East African Rift as the ideal natural laboratory for investigating fluid-driven faulting processes in extensional tectonic environments.

  5. Tectonic and climatic control on evolution of rift lakes in the Central Kenya Rift, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergner, A. G. N.; Strecker, M. R.; Trauth, M. H.; Deino, A.; Gasse, F.; Blisniuk, P.; Dühnforth, M.

    2009-12-01

    The long-term histories of the neighboring Nakuru-Elmenteita and Naivasha lake basins in the Central Kenya Rift illustrate the relative importance of tectonic versus climatic effects on rift-lake evolution and the formation of disparate sedimentary environments. Although modern climate conditions in the Central Kenya Rift are very similar for these basins, hydrology and hydrochemistry of present-day lakes Nakuru, Elmenteita and Naivasha contrast dramatically due to tectonically controlled differences in basin geometries, catchment size, and fluvial processes. In this study, we use eighteen 14C and 40Ar/ 39Ar dated fluvio-lacustrine sedimentary sections to unravel the spatiotemporal evolution of the lake basins in response to tectonic and climatic influences. We reconstruct paleoclimatic and ecological trends recorded in these basins based on fossil diatom assemblages and geologic field mapping. Our study shows a tendency towards increasing alkalinity and shrinkage of water bodies in both lake basins during the last million years. Ongoing volcano-tectonic segmentation of the lake basins, as well as reorganization of upstream drainage networks have led to contrasting hydrologic regimes with adjacent alkaline and freshwater conditions. During extreme wet periods in the past, such as during the early Holocene climate optimum, lake levels were high and all basins evolved toward freshwater systems. During drier periods some of these lakes revert back to alkaline conditions, while others maintain freshwater characteristics. Our results have important implications for the use and interpretation of lake sediment as climate archives in tectonically active regions and emphasize the need to deconvolve lacustrine records with respect to tectonics versus climatic forcing mechanisms.

  6. Mosquitoes and the Environment in Nile Delta Villages with Previous Rift Valley Fever Activity.

    PubMed

    Zayed, Abdelbaset B; Britch, Seth C; Soliman, Mohamed I; Linthicum, Kenneth J

    2015-06-01

    Egypt is affected by serious human and animal mosquito-borne diseases such as Rift Valley fever (RVF). We investigated how potential RVF virus mosquito vector populations are affected by environmental conditions in the Nile Delta region of Egypt by collecting mosquitoes and environmental data from 3 key governorates before and after 2012 seasonal flooding. We found that environmental effects varied among species, life stages, pre- and postflood groupings, and geographic populations of the same species, and that mosquito community composition could change after flooding. Our study provides preliminary data for modeling mosquitoes and mosquito-borne diseases in the Nile Delta region.

  7. Mosquitoes and the Environment in Nile Delta Villages with Previous Rift Valley Fever Activity.

    PubMed

    Zayed, Abdelbaset B; Britch, Seth C; Soliman, Mohamed I; Linthicum, Kenneth J

    2015-06-01

    Egypt is affected by serious human and animal mosquito-borne diseases such as Rift Valley fever (RVF). We investigated how potential RVF virus mosquito vector populations are affected by environmental conditions in the Nile Delta region of Egypt by collecting mosquitoes and environmental data from 3 key governorates before and after 2012 seasonal flooding. We found that environmental effects varied among species, life stages, pre- and postflood groupings, and geographic populations of the same species, and that mosquito community composition could change after flooding. Our study provides preliminary data for modeling mosquitoes and mosquito-borne diseases in the Nile Delta region. PMID:26181689

  8. Chronology of volcanism and rift basin propagation - Rungwe volcanic province, East Africa

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ebinger, C. J.; Deino, A. L.; Drake, R. E.; Tesha, A. L.

    1989-01-01

    The spatial and temporal development of along-axis segmentation in youthful continental rifts was investigated using the results of field, remote sensing, and K-Ar geochronology studies conducted in four (Rukwa, Songwe, Usangu, and Karonga) rift basins within the Rungwe volcanic province in East Africa. Results indicated that the Rukwa and Karonga border fault segments formed between 7.25 and 5 m.y. ago, the Usangu border fault segment developed between 3 and 2 m.y. ago, and subsidence along the Songwe border fault segment had occurred by 0.5 Ma. It is shown that individual basins developed diachronously, each following a similar sequence: (1) initial border fault development; (2) asymmetric basin subsidence/flank uplift and the development of monoclines opposite the border faults; and (3) continued subsidence and tilting along intrabasinal faults with flexural upwarping of the rift flanks, enhancing basinal asymmetries.

  9. Volcanic rocks and processes of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge rift valley near 36 ° 49′ N

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hekinian, R.; Moore, J.G.; Bryan, W.B.

    1976-01-01

    The above relations indicate that the diverse lava types were erupted from a shallow, zoned magma chamber from fissures distributed over the width of the inner rift valley and elongate parallel to it. Differentiation was accomplished by cooling and crystallization of plagioclase, olivine, and clinopyroxene toward the margins of the chamber. The centrally located hills were built by the piling up of frequent eruption of mainly primitive lavas which also are the youngest flows. In contrast smaller and less frequent eruptions of more differentiated lavas were exposed on both sides of the rift valley axis.

  10. New studies of post-Pleistocene human skeletal remains from the Rift Valley, Kenya.

    PubMed

    Rightmire, G P

    1975-05-01

    Prehistoric human crania from Bromhead's Site, Willey's Kopje, Makalia Burial Site, Nakuru, and other localities in the Eastern Rift Valley of Kenya are reassessed using measurements and a multivariate statistical approach. Materials available for comparison include series of Bushman and Hottentot crania. South and East African Negroes, and Egyptians. Up to 34 cranial measurements taken on these series are utilized to construct three multiple discriminant frameworks, each of which can assign modern individuals to a correct group with considerable accuracy. When the prehistoric crania are classified with the help of these discriminants, results indicate that several of the skulls are best grouped with modern Negroes. This is especially clear in the case of individuals from Bromhead's Site, Willey's Kopje, and Nakuru, and the evidence hardly suggests post-Pleistocene domination of the Rift and surrounding territory by "Mediterranean" Caucasoids, as has been claimed. Recent linguistic and archaeological findings are also reviewed, and these seem to support application of the term Nilotic Negro to the early Rift populations.

  11. Finite-element modelling of the structure and evolution of the South Kenya Rift, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gölke, Matthias; Mechie, James

    1994-09-01

    A finite-element (FE) model was used in this study to investigate the intraplate rifting process in south Kenya, East Africa. The rifting model shows that the important factors influencing the amount of shoulder uplift and rift subsidence include the horizontal deviatoric extensional stresses, the viscosity of the lower crust, and the dimension and density contrast of the low-velocity upper-mantle anomaly. Thus, for instance, a reduced lower-crust viscosity as well as an increased extensional far-field stress favours the subsidence of the rift basin. In turn, for a reduced lower-crust viscosity, the magnitude of the applied extensional stress should be reduced in order to end up with the same topography of the rifted area as can be obtained with a more viscous lower crust combined with a relatively high extensional far-field stress. In addition, it also became obvious that the uplift of the crust-mantle boundary beneath the rift depends predominantly on the size and density contrast of the upper-mantle anomaly. An increased density contrast between the upper-mantle anomaly and normal mantle results in increased buoyancy forces thus producing an increased uplift of the crust-mantle boundary. In turn, in order to avoid too large values for the surface topography, a reduced lower-crust viscosity in the order of η = 10 21 Pa s is required. Models without an upper-mantle low-density anomaly have resulted in crustal thickening beneath the rift and not in crustal thinning. In accordance with the geological field evidence, we have modelled the evolution of the South Kenya Rift in two stages. In the first stage, from 16 to 10 Ma ago, a broad regional uplift of a few hundred metres produced by a relatively small but broad low-density upper-mantle anomaly was accompanied by an insignificant amount of faulting. In the second stage, from 10 Ma ago to the present day, significant faulting accompanied by the buoyancy effects of a larger, low-density, low-velocity upper

  12. Correlative Gene Expression to Protective Seroconversion in Rift Valley Fever Vaccinates

    PubMed Central

    Laughlin, Richard C.; Drake, Kenneth L.; Morrill, John C.; Adams, L. Garry

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever Virus (RVFV), a negative-stranded RNA virus, is the etiological agent of the vector-borne zoonotic disease, Rift Valley fever (RVF). In both humans and livestock, protective immunity can be achieved through vaccination. Earlier and more recent vaccine trials in cattle and sheep demonstrated a strong neutralizing antibody and total IgG response induced by the RVF vaccine, authentic recombinant MP-12 (arMP-12). From previous work, protective immunity in sheep and cattle vaccinates normally occurs from 7 to 21 days after inoculation with arMP-12. While the serology and protective response induced by arMP-12 has been studied, little attention has been paid to the underlying molecular and genetic events occurring prior to the serologic immune response. To address this, we isolated RNA from whole blood of vaccinated calves over a time course of 21 days before and after vaccination with arMP-12. The time course RNAs were sequenced by RNASeq and bioinformatically analyzed. Our results revealed time-dependent activation or repression of numerous gene ontologies and pathways related to the vaccine induced immune response and its regulation. Additional bioinformatic analyses identified a correlative relationship between specific host immune response genes and protective immunity prior to the detection of protective serum neutralizing antibody responses. These results contribute an important proof of concept for identifying molecular and genetic components underlying the immune response to RVF vaccination and protection prior to serologic detection. PMID:26783758

  13. Large mammals from the Upper Neopleistocene reference sections in the Tunka rift valley, southwestern Baikal Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shchetnikov, A. A.; Klementiev, A. M.; Filinov, I. A.; Semeney, E. Yu.

    2015-03-01

    This work presents the data on new finds of fossil macrotheriofauna in the reference sections of the Upper Neopleistocene sediments in the Tunka rift valley (southwestern Baikal Region). The osteological material of a number of Late Neopleistocene mammals including extinct species rare for the Baikal region such as Crocuta spelaea, Panthera spelaea, and Spirocerus kiakhtensis (?) was directly dated with a radiocarbon (AMS) method. The obtained 14C data (18000-35000 years) allow one to rejuvenate significantly the upper limit of the common age interval of habitat of these animals in southern part of Eastern Siberia. Cave hyena and spiral-horned antelope lived in the Tunka rift valley in the Baikal region in Late Kargino time (37-24 ka), and cave lion survived the maximum in the Sartan cryochron in the region (21-20 ka). The study of collected paleontological collections provides a basis for selection of independent Kargino (MIS 3) faunal assemblages to use them for regional biostratigraphic analysis of Pleistocene deposits. Radiocarbon age dating of samples allows one to attribute confidently all paleofaunal remains available to the second half of the Late Pleistocene.

  14. Hot Spot Induced Cenozoic Volcanism in the Upper Rajang Valley, Sarawak - Is Borneo Rifting?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taib, N.

    2010-12-01

    The Upper Rajang Valley covers a large area in the northern interior of the island of Borneo, in the Malaysian state of Sarawak . It is underlain by the Cretaceous to Late Eocene deep to shallow marine sediments of the Rajang Group. Within this area are several Cenozoic volcanic edifices, which to date have been sparsely studied. Two distinct episodes of volcanism are recognized - the first, dated early Eocene, consists of K-rich basalts, and is represented by the Bukit Mersing volcanics, which were erupted conformably onto deep water turbidites of the Rajang Group. The second, far more extensive, is dated Pliocene to Quaternary, and is bimodal, consisting mainly of early dacite and rhyodacite tuffs, with a smaller amount of later basalt, forming several volcanic plateaus and massifs (Hose Mountains, Usun Apau, Linau-Balui, Nieuwenhuis Mountains and others). They lie unconformably over pre-Miocene sediments, the Linau-Balui basalts having been erupted onto Quaternary river terraces. Mantle-normalized REE and incompatible trace element spider plots reveal that the Bukit Mersing basalts have geochemical affinity with Oceanic Island Basalts (OIB) and rift basalts, being enriched in LREEs and Most Incompatible Elements, and no Eu anomaly. Preliminary trace element data for several basalt samples from Usun Apau also show Oceanic Island/Rift affinity. Bimodal volcanism is most often associated with rift environments. Efforts are being made to radiometrically date the volcanics, in part to determine the possibility of future eruptions. The Upper Rajang Valley is remote, covered in tropical rainforest and is very sparsely populated. At this time, there is no information concerning signs of imminent volcanism, such as hot springs and microseismicity.

  15. The geochemistry of groundwater resources in the Jordan Valley: The impact of the Rift Valley brines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Farber, E.; Vengosh, A.; Gavrieli, I.; Marie, A.; Bullen, T.D.; Mayer, B.; Polak, A.; Shavit, U.

    2007-01-01

    The chemical composition of groundwater in the Jordan Valley, along the section between the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea, is investigated in order to evaluate the origin of the groundwater resources and, in particular, to elucidate the role of deep brines on the chemical composition of the regional groundwater resources in the Jordan Valley. Samples were collected from shallow groundwater in research boreholes on two sites in the northern and southern parts of the Jordan Valley, adjacent to the Jordan River. Data is also compiled from previous published studies. Geochemical data (e.g., Br/Cl, Na/Cl and SO4/Cl ratios) and B, O, Sr and S isotopic compositions are used to define groundwater groups, to map their distribution in the Jordan valley, and to evaluate their origin. The combined geochemical tools enabled the delineation of three major sources of solutes that differentially affect the quality of groundwater in the Jordan Valley: (1) flow and mixing with hypersaline brines with high Br/Cl (>2 ?? 10-3) and low Na/Cl (<0.8) ratios; (2) dissolution of highly soluble salts (e.g., halite, gypsum) in the host sediments resulting in typically lower Br/Cl signal (<2 ?? 10-3); and (3) recharge of anthropogenic effluents, primarily derived from evaporated agricultural return flow that has interacted (e.g., base-exchange reactions) with the overlying soil. It is shown that shallow saline groundwaters influenced by brine mixing exhibit a north-south variation in their Br/Cl and Na/Cl ratios. This chemical trend was observed also in hypersaline brines in the Jordan valley, which suggests a local mixing process between the water bodies. ?? 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. The Olorgesailie Drilling Project (ODP): a high-resolution drill core record from a hominin site in the East African Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dommain, R.; Potts, R.; Behrensmeyer, A. K.; Deino, A. L.

    2014-12-01

    The East African rift valley contains an outstanding record of hominin fossils that document human evolution over the Plio-Pleistocene when the global and regional climate and the rift valley itself changed markedly. The sediments of fossil localities typically provide, however, only short time windows into past climatic and environmental conditions. Continuous, long-term terrestrial records are now becoming available through core drilling to help elucidate the paleoenvironmental context of human evolution. Here we present a 500,000 year long high-resolution drill core record obtained from a key fossil and archeological site - the Olorgesailie Basin in the southern Kenya Rift Valley, well known for its sequence of archeological and faunal sites for the past 1.2 million years. In 2012 two drill cores (54 and 166 m long) were collected in the Koora Plain just south of Mt. Olorgesailie as part of the Olorgesailie Drilling Project (ODP) to establish a detailed climate and ecological record associated with the last evidence of Homo erectus in Africa, the oldest transition of Acheulean to Middle Stone Age technology, and large mammal species turnover, all of which are documented in the Olorgesailie excavations. The cores were sampled at the National Lacustrine Core Facility. More than 140 samples of tephra and trachytic basement lavas have led to high-precision 40Ar/39Ar dating. The cores are being analyzed for a suite of paleoclimatic and paleoecological proxies such as diatoms, pollen, fungal spores, phytoliths, ostracodes, carbonate isotopes, leaf wax biomarkers, charcoal, and clay mineralogy. Sedimentological analyses, including lithological descriptions, microscopic smear slide analysis (242 samples), and grain-size analysis, reveal a highly variable sedimentary sequence of deep lake phases with laminated sediments, diatomites, shallow lake and near shore phases, fluvial deposits, paleosols, interspersed carbonate layers, and abundant volcanic ash deposits. Magnetic

  17. Transmission Dynamics of Rift Valley Fever Virus: Effects of Live and Killed Vaccines on Epizootic Outbreaks and Enzootic Maintenance.

    PubMed

    Chamchod, Farida; Cosner, Chris; Cantrell, R Stephen; Beier, John C; Ruan, Shigui

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arthropod-borne viral pathogen that causes significant morbidity and mortality in small ruminants throughout Africa and the Middle East. Due to the sporadic and explosive nature of RVF outbreaks, vaccination has proved challenging to reduce RVFV infection in the ruminant population. Currently, there are two available types of vaccines, live and killed, in endemic areas. In this study, two mathematical models have been developed to explore the impact of live and killed vaccines on the transmission dynamics of RVFV. We demonstrate in general that vaccination helps reduce the severity of RVF outbreaks and that less delay in implementation and more vaccination attempts and effective vaccines can reduce the outbreak magnitude and the endemic number of RVFV. However, an introduction of a number of ruminants vaccinated by live vaccines in RVFV-free areas may cause an outbreak and RVFV may become endemic if there is sustained use of live vaccines. Other factors that are the important determinants of RVF outbreaks include: unsustained vaccination programs, recruitment of susceptible ruminants, and the seasonal abundance of mosquitoes. PMID:26869999

  18. Transmission Dynamics of Rift Valley Fever Virus: Effects of Live and Killed Vaccines on Epizootic Outbreaks and Enzootic Maintenance

    PubMed Central

    Chamchod, Farida; Cosner, Chris; Cantrell, R. Stephen; Beier, John C.; Ruan, Shigui

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arthropod-borne viral pathogen that causes significant morbidity and mortality in small ruminants throughout Africa and the Middle East. Due to the sporadic and explosive nature of RVF outbreaks, vaccination has proved challenging to reduce RVFV infection in the ruminant population. Currently, there are two available types of vaccines, live and killed, in endemic areas. In this study, two mathematical models have been developed to explore the impact of live and killed vaccines on the transmission dynamics of RVFV. We demonstrate in general that vaccination helps reduce the severity of RVF outbreaks and that less delay in implementation and more vaccination attempts and effective vaccines can reduce the outbreak magnitude and the endemic number of RVFV. However, an introduction of a number of ruminants vaccinated by live vaccines in RVFV-free areas may cause an outbreak and RVFV may become endemic if there is sustained use of live vaccines. Other factors that are the important determinants of RVF outbreaks include: unsustained vaccination programs, recruitment of susceptible ruminants, and the seasonal abundance of mosquitoes. PMID:26869999

  19. Detection of avian influenza viruses in wild waterbirds in the Rift Valley of Kenya using fecal sampling.

    PubMed

    Ofula, Victor O; Franklin, Alan B; Root, J Jeffrey; Sullivan, Heather J; Gichuki, Patrick; Makio, Albina; Bulimo, Wallace; Abong'o, Bernard O; Muchai, Muchane; Schnabel, David

    2013-06-01

    Highly pathogenic avian influenza virus A/H5N1 has been reported in 11 African countries. Migratory waterbirds have the potential of introducing A/H5N1 into east Africa through the Rift Valley of Kenya. We present the results of a wild bird surveillance system for A/H5N1 and other avian influenza viruses based on avian fecal sampling in Kenya. We collected 2630 fecal samples in 2008. Viral RNA was extracted from pools of 3-5 fecal samples and analyzed for presence of avian influenza virus RNA by real-time RT-PCR. Twelve (2.3%) of the 516 sample pools were positive for avian influenza virus RNA, 2 of which were subtyped as H4N6 viruses. This is the first report of avian influenza virus in wild birds in Kenya. This study demonstrates the success of this approach in detecting avian influenza virus in wild birds and represents an efficient surveillance system for avian influenza virus in regions with limited resources.

  20. Arsenic exposure of rural populations from the Rift Valley of Ethiopia as monitored by keratin in toenails.

    PubMed

    Merola, R Brittany; Kravchenko, Julia; Rango, Tewodros; Vengosh, Avner

    2014-01-01

    Arsenic (As) contamination of drinking water is a worldwide phenomenon whose effect among vulnerable and rural communities in the Rift Valley of Ethiopia in eastern Africa is not well studied. This study examines As exposure and bioaccumulation from drinking water by monitoring human keratin in the form of toenails from exposed populations. Groundwater samples from drinking water wells (n=34) were collected along with toenail samples (n=58) from local communities and were analyzed for trace metals including As by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Of the total number of wells tested, 53% had As level above the WHO maximum contamination level of 10 p.p.b. Arsenic in toenails was significantly correlated to corresponding drinking water (r=0.72; R(2)=0.52; P<0.001). This correlation improves for drinking water with As concentrations above 2 p.p.b. (r=0.74; R(2)=0.54; P<0.001). Male minors (<18 years old) were found to have greater nail-As concentrations compared with adults consuming equal amounts of As (P<0.05). Estimated As dose specifically from drinking water sources was also associated with nail concentrations (P<0.01). We suggest that As measurement in nails could be a reliable method for detecting As exposure in residents living in rural areas.

  1. Human Dispersals Along the African Rift Valley in the Late Quaternary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tryon, C. A.; Faith, J. T.; Peppe, D. J.

    2014-12-01

    Climate- and tectonic-driven environmental dynamics of the East African Rift System (EARS) during the Quaternary played an important role in the demographic history of early Homo sapiens, including expansions of modern humans across and out of Africa. Human forager population size, geographic range, and behaviors such as hunting strategies and residential mobility likely varied in response to changes in the local and regional environment. Throughout the Quaternary, floral and faunal change was linked at least in part to variations in moisture availability, temperature, and atmospheric CO2, which in addition to uplift and faulting, contributed to the expansion and contraction of a number of large lakes that served as biogeographic barriers to many taxa. This is particularly clear for the Lake Victoria basin, where biogeographic, geological, and paleontological evidence documents repeated expansion and contraction of the ranges of species in response to lake level and vegetation change. Across much of eastern Africa, the topography of the rift facilitated north-south dispersals, the timing of which may have depended in part on the expansion and contraction of the equatorial forest belt. Dispersal potential likely increased during the more arid periods of the late Quaternary, when the roles of lakes and forests as dispersal barriers was reduced and the extent of low net primary productivity dry grasslands increased, the latter requiring large home ranges for human foragers, conditions suitable for range expansions within H. sapiens.

  2. The Salton Seismic Imaging Project: Tomographic characterization of a sediment-filled rift valley and adjacent ranges, southern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davenport, K.; Hole, J. A.; Stock, J. M.; Fuis, G. S.; Carrick, E.; Tikoff, B.

    2011-12-01

    The Salton Trough in Southern California represents the northernmost rift of the Gulf of California extensional system. Relative motion between the Pacific and North American plates is accommodated by continental rifting in step-over zones between the San Andreas, Imperial, and Cerro Prieto transform faults. Rapid sedimentation from the Colorado River has isolated the trough from the southern portion of the Gulf of California, progressively filling the subsiding rift basin. Based on data from previous seismic surveys, the pre-existing continent has ruptured completely, and a new ~22 km thick crust has been created entirely by sedimentation overlying rift-related magmatism. The MARGINS, EarthScope, and USGS-funded Salton Seismic Imaging Project (SSIP) was designed to investigate the nature of this new crust, the ongoing process of continental rifting, and associated earthquake hazards. SSIP, acquired in March 2011, comprises 7 lines of onshore seismic refraction / wide-angle reflection data, 2 lines of refraction / reflection data in the Salton Sea, and a line of broadband stations. This presentation focuses on the refraction / wide-angle reflection line across the Imperial Valley, extending ~220 km across California from Otay Mesa, near Tijuana, to the Colorado River. The data from this line includes seventeen 100-160 kg explosive shots and receivers at 100 m spacing across the Imperial Valley to constrain the structure of the Salton Trough rift basin, including the Imperial Fault. Eight larger shots (600-920 kg) at 20-35 km spacing and receivers at 200-500 m spacing extend the line across the Peninsular Ranges and the Chocolate Mountains. These data will contrast the structure of the rift to that of the surrounding crust and provide constraints on whole-crust and uppermost mantle structure. Preliminary work has included tomographic inversion of first-arrival travel times across the Valley, emphasizing a minimum-structure approach to create a velocity model of the

  3. Assessment and recommendations for two sites with active and potential aquaculture production in Rift Valley and Coast Provinces, Kenya

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Kenya has a long history of local fish consumption. The population in the Lake Victoria area (Rift Valley Province) Northwest of Nairobi and coastal communities (Coast Province) have historically included fish in their diet. Migration from villages to urban areas and increasing commerce has created ...

  4. Efficacy of a recombinant Rift Valley fever virus MP-12 with NSm deletion as a vaccine candidate in sheep

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a mosquito-borne virus in the Bunyaviridae family and Phlebovirus genus, causes RVF, a disease of ruminants and man, endemic in Sub-Saharan African countries. However, outbreaks in Yemen and Saudi Arabia demonstrate the ability for RVFV to spread into virgin territory...

  5. Remote Sensing Contributions to Prediction and Risk Assessment of Natural Diasters Caused by Large Scale Rift Valley fever Outbreaks

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Remotely sensed vegetation measurements for the last 30 years combined with other climate data sets such as rainfall and sea surface temperatures have come to play an important role in the study of the ecology of vector-borne diseases. We show that episodic outbreaks of Rift Valley fever are influen...

  6. Serological Evidence of Rift Valley Fever Virus Circulation in Domestic Cattle and African Buffalo in Northern Botswana (2010–2011)

    PubMed Central

    Jori, Ferran; Alexander, Kathleen A.; Mokopasetso, Mokganedi; Munstermann, Suzanne; Moagabo, Keabetswe; Paweska, Janusz T.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is endemic in many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and is responsible for severe outbreaks in livestock characterized by a sudden onset of abortions and high neonatal mortality. During the last decade, several outbreaks have occurred in Southern Africa, with a very limited number of cases reported in Botswana. To date, published information on the occurrence of RVF in wild and domestic animals from Botswana is very scarce and outdated, despite being critical to national and regional disease control. To address this gap, 863 cattle and 150 buffalo sampled at the interface between livestock areas and the Chobe National Park (CNP) and the Okavango Delta (OD) were screened for the presence of RVF virus (RVFV) neutralizing antibodies. Antibodies were detected in 5.7% (n = 863), 95% confidence intervals (CI) (4.3–7.5%) of cattle and 12.7% (n = 150), 95% CI (7.8–19.5%) of buffalo samples. The overall prevalence was significantly higher (p = 0.0016) for buffalo [12.7%] than for cattle [5.7%]. Equally, when comparing RVF seroprevalence in both wildlife areas for all pooled bovid species, it was significantly higher in CNP than in OD (9.5 vs. 4%, respectively; p = 0.0004). Our data provide the first evidence of wide circulation of RVFV in both buffalo and cattle populations in Northern Botswana and highlight the need for further epidemiological and ecological investigations on RVF at the wildlife–livestock–human interface in this region. PMID:26664990

  7. Serological Evidence of Rift Valley Fever Virus Circulation in Domestic Cattle and African Buffalo in Northern Botswana (2010-2011).

    PubMed

    Jori, Ferran; Alexander, Kathleen A; Mokopasetso, Mokganedi; Munstermann, Suzanne; Moagabo, Keabetswe; Paweska, Janusz T

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is endemic in many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and is responsible for severe outbreaks in livestock characterized by a sudden onset of abortions and high neonatal mortality. During the last decade, several outbreaks have occurred in Southern Africa, with a very limited number of cases reported in Botswana. To date, published information on the occurrence of RVF in wild and domestic animals from Botswana is very scarce and outdated, despite being critical to national and regional disease control. To address this gap, 863 cattle and 150 buffalo sampled at the interface between livestock areas and the Chobe National Park (CNP) and the Okavango Delta (OD) were screened for the presence of RVF virus (RVFV) neutralizing antibodies. Antibodies were detected in 5.7% (n = 863), 95% confidence intervals (CI) (4.3-7.5%) of cattle and 12.7% (n = 150), 95% CI (7.8-19.5%) of buffalo samples. The overall prevalence was significantly higher (p = 0.0016) for buffalo [12.7%] than for cattle [5.7%]. Equally, when comparing RVF seroprevalence in both wildlife areas for all pooled bovid species, it was significantly higher in CNP than in OD (9.5 vs. 4%, respectively; p = 0.0004). Our data provide the first evidence of wide circulation of RVFV in both buffalo and cattle populations in Northern Botswana and highlight the need for further epidemiological and ecological investigations on RVF at the wildlife-livestock-human interface in this region. PMID:26664990

  8. First External Quality Assessment of Molecular and Serological Detection of Rift Valley Fever in the Western Mediterranean Region

    PubMed Central

    Monaco, Federica; Cosseddu, Gian Mario; Doumbia, Baba; Madani, Hafsa; El Mellouli, Fatiha; Jiménez-Clavero, Miguel Angel; Sghaier, Soufien; Marianneau, Philippe; Cetre-Sossah, Catherine; Polci, Andrea; Lacote, Sandra; Lakhdar, Magtouf; Fernandez-Pinero, Jovita; Sari Nassim, Chabane; Pinoni, Chiara; Capobianco Dondona, Andrea; Gallardo, Carmina; Bouzid, Taoufiq; Conte, Annamaria; Bortone, Grazia; Savini, Giovanni; Petrini, Antonio; Puech, Lilian

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis which affects humans and a wide range of domestic and wild ruminants. The large spread of RVF in Africa and its potential to emerge beyond its geographic range requires the development of surveillance strategies to promptly detect the disease outbreaks in order to implement efficient control measures, which could prevent the widespread of the virus to humans. The Animal Health Mediterranean Network (REMESA) linking some Northern African countries as Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Tunisia with Southern European ones as France, Italy, Portugal and Spain aims at improving the animal health in the Western Mediterranean Region since 2009. In this context, a first assessment of the diagnostic capacities of the laboratories involved in the RVF surveillance was performed. The first proficiency testing (external quality assessment—EQA) for the detection of the viral genome and antibodies of RVF virus (RVFV) was carried out from October 2013 to February 2014. Ten laboratories participated from 6 different countries (4 from North Africa and 2 from Europe). Six laboratories participated in the ring trial for both viral RNA and antibodies detection methods, while four laboratories participated exclusively in the antibodies detection ring trial. For the EQA targeting the viral RNA detection methods 5 out of 6 laboratories reported 100% of correct results. One laboratory misidentified 2 positive samples as negative and 3 positive samples as doubtful indicating a need for corrective actions. For the EQA targeting IgG and IgM antibodies methods 9 out of the 10 laboratories reported 100% of correct results, whilst one laboratory reported all correct results except one false-positive. These two ring trials provide evidence that most of the participating laboratories are capable to detect RVF antibodies and viral RNA thus recognizing RVF infection in affected ruminants with the diagnostic methods currently

  9. First External Quality Assessment of Molecular and Serological Detection of Rift Valley Fever in the Western Mediterranean Region.

    PubMed

    Monaco, Federica; Cosseddu, Gian Mario; Doumbia, Baba; Madani, Hafsa; El Mellouli, Fatiha; Jiménez-Clavero, Miguel Angel; Sghaier, Soufien; Marianneau, Philippe; Cetre-Sossah, Catherine; Polci, Andrea; Lacote, Sandra; Lakhdar, Magtouf; Fernandez-Pinero, Jovita; Sari Nassim, Chabane; Pinoni, Chiara; Capobianco Dondona, Andrea; Gallardo, Carmina; Bouzid, Taoufiq; Conte, Annamaria; Bortone, Grazia; Savini, Giovanni; Petrini, Antonio; Puech, Lilian

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis which affects humans and a wide range of domestic and wild ruminants. The large spread of RVF in Africa and its potential to emerge beyond its geographic range requires the development of surveillance strategies to promptly detect the disease outbreaks in order to implement efficient control measures, which could prevent the widespread of the virus to humans. The Animal Health Mediterranean Network (REMESA) linking some Northern African countries as Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Tunisia with Southern European ones as France, Italy, Portugal and Spain aims at improving the animal health in the Western Mediterranean Region since 2009. In this context, a first assessment of the diagnostic capacities of the laboratories involved in the RVF surveillance was performed. The first proficiency testing (external quality assessment--EQA) for the detection of the viral genome and antibodies of RVF virus (RVFV) was carried out from October 2013 to February 2014. Ten laboratories participated from 6 different countries (4 from North Africa and 2 from Europe). Six laboratories participated in the ring trial for both viral RNA and antibodies detection methods, while four laboratories participated exclusively in the antibodies detection ring trial. For the EQA targeting the viral RNA detection methods 5 out of 6 laboratories reported 100% of correct results. One laboratory misidentified 2 positive samples as negative and 3 positive samples as doubtful indicating a need for corrective actions. For the EQA targeting IgG and IgM antibodies methods 9 out of the 10 laboratories reported 100% of correct results, whilst one laboratory reported all correct results except one false-positive. These two ring trials provide evidence that most of the participating laboratories are capable to detect RVF antibodies and viral RNA thus recognizing RVF infection in affected ruminants with the diagnostic methods currently

  10. Rift Valley fever: a sero-epidemiological survey among pregnant women in Mozambique.

    PubMed Central

    Niklasson, B.; Liljestrand, J.; Bergström, S.; Peters, C. J.

    1987-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) causes abortion in sheep and cattle. However, the teratogenic and abortogenic potential of RVF in humans is not known. Sera from a total of 1163 pregnant women in Mozambique were tested for RVF virus antibodies by ELISA and 28 (2%) were found to be positive. Mothers experiencing fetal death or miscarriage (155) had the same RVF virus antibody prevalence as those with normal deliveries. Analysis of maternity histories showed some indication of increased fetal wastage among women positive for RVF virus antibody. The ELISA used in this study was compared with a plaque reduction neutralization test and found to be equally sensitive and specific for the detection of RVF virus IgG antibodies. PMID:3678406

  11. Repurposing FDA-approved drugs as therapeutics to treat Rift Valley fever virus infection

    PubMed Central

    Benedict, Ashwini; Bansal, Neha; Senina, Svetlana; Hooper, Idris; Lundberg, Lindsay; de la Fuente, Cynthia; Narayanan, Aarthi; Gutting, Bradford; Kehn-Hall, Kylene

    2015-01-01

    There are currently no FDA-approved therapeutics available to treat Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) infection. In an effort to repurpose drugs for RVFV treatment, a library of FDA-approved drugs was screened to determine their ability to inhibit RVFV. Several drugs from varying compound classes, including inhibitors of growth factor receptors, microtubule assembly/disassembly, and DNA synthesis, were found to reduce RVFV replication. The hepatocellular and renal cell carcinoma drug, sorafenib, was the most effective inhibitor, being non-toxic and demonstrating inhibition of RVFV in a cell-type and virus strain independent manner. Mechanism of action studies indicated that sorafenib targets at least two stages in the virus infectious cycle, RNA synthesis and viral egress. Computational modeling studies also support this conclusion. siRNA knockdown of Raf proteins indicated that non-classical targets of sorafenib are likely important for the replication of RVFV. PMID:26217313

  12. Ultrastructural study of Rift Valley fever virus in the mouse model

    SciTech Connect

    Reed, Christopher; Steele, Keith E.; Honko, Anna; Shamblin, Joshua; Hensley, Lisa E.; Smith, Darci R.

    2012-09-15

    Detailed ultrastructural studies of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in the mouse model are needed to develop and characterize a small animal model of RVF for the evaluation of potential vaccines and therapeutics. In this study, the ultrastructural features of RVFV infection in the mouse model were analyzed. The main changes in the liver included the presence of viral particles in hepatocytes and hepatic stem cells accompanied by hepatocyte apoptosis. However, viral particles were observed rarely in the liver; in contrast, particles were extremely abundant in the CNS. Despite extensive lymphocytolysis, direct evidence of viral replication was not observed in the lymphoid tissue. These results correlate with the acute-onset hepatitis and delayed-onset encephalitis that are dominant features of severe human RVF, but suggest that host immune-mediated mechanisms contribute significantly to pathology. The results of this study expand our knowledge of RVFV-host interactions and further characterize the mouse model of RVF.

  13. Single-particle cryo-electron microscopy of Rift Valley fever virus

    SciTech Connect

    Sherman, Michael B.; Freiberg, Alexander N.; Holbrook, Michael R.; Watowich, Stanley J.

    2009-04-25

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV; Bunyaviridae; Phlebovirus) is an emerging human and veterinary pathogen causing acute hepatitis in ruminants and has the potential to cause hemorrhagic fever in humans. We report a three-dimensional reconstruction of RVFV vaccine strain MP-12 (RVFV MP-12) by cryo-electron microcopy using icosahedral symmetry of individual virions. Although the genomic core of RVFV MP-12 is apparently poorly ordered, the glycoproteins on the virus surface are highly symmetric and arranged on a T = 12 icosahedral lattice. Our RVFV MP-12 structure allowed clear identification of inter-capsomer contacts and definition of possible glycoprotein arrangements within capsomers. This structure provides a detailed model for phleboviruses, opens new avenues for high-resolution structural studies of the bunyavirus family, and aids the design of antiviral diagnostics and effective subunit vaccines.

  14. [Rift Valley fever in Madagascar in 1991. Sero-epidemiological studies in cattle].

    PubMed

    Morvan, J; Rollin, P E; Roux, J

    1992-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus was detected for the first time in Madagascar in 1979, but without any impact on human and animal populations. However, in 1990 and 1991, several outbreaks with massive cattle abortions were described. Since that period, seroepidemiological surveys have been conducted on the East coast and in the highlands (outbreak areas), in the high cattle density regions, and in the national slaughter house in Antananarivo. A high RVF IgM antibody prevalence was detected in the outbreak areas during the epizootics. This IgM prevalence thereafter decreased and was followed by an IgG high prevalence in all tested regions. Hypotheses on the occurrence of the virus in Madagascar, outbreak origins and virus circulation on the island are discussed.

  15. Application of Droplet Digital PCR to Validate Rift Valley Fever Vaccines.

    PubMed

    Ly, Hoai J; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2016-01-01

    Droplet Digital™ polymerase chain reaction (ddPCR™) is a promising technique that quantitates the absolute concentration of nucleic acids in a given sample. This technique utilizes water-in-oil emulsion technology, a system developed by Bio-Rad Laboratories that partitions a single sample into thousands of nanoliter-sized droplets and counts nucleic acid molecules encapsulated in each individual particle as one PCR reaction. This chapter discusses the applications and methodologies of ddPCR for development of Rift Valley fever (RVF) vaccine, using an example that measures RNA copy numbers of a live-attenuated MP-12 vaccine from virus stocks, infected cells, or animal blood. We also discuss how ddPCR detects a reversion mutant of MP-12 from virus stocks accurately. The use of ddPCR improves the quality control of live-attenuated vaccines in the seed lot systems. PMID:27076132

  16. Experimental Infection of Calves by Two Genetically-Distinct Strains of Rift Valley Fever Virus

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, William C.; Davis, A. Sally; Gaudreault, Natasha N.; Faburay, Bonto; Trujillo, Jessie D.; Shivanna, Vinay; Sunwoo, Sun Young; Balogh, Aaron; Endalew, Abaineh; Ma, Wenjun; Drolet, Barbara S.; Ruder, Mark G.; Morozov, Igor; McVey, D. Scott; Richt, Juergen A.

    2016-01-01

    Recent outbreaks of Rift Valley fever in ruminant livestock, characterized by mass abortion and high mortality rates in neonates, have raised international interest in improving vaccine control strategies. Previously, we developed a reliable challenge model for sheep that improves the evaluation of existing and novel vaccines in sheep. This sheep model demonstrated differences in the pathogenesis of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) infection between two genetically-distinct wild-type strains of the virus, Saudi Arabia 2001 (SA01) and Kenya 2006 (Ken06). Here, we evaluated the pathogenicity of these two RVFV strains in mixed breed beef calves. There was a transient increase in rectal temperatures with both virus strains, but this clinical sign was less consistent than previously reported with sheep. Three of the five Ken06-infected animals had an early-onset viremia, one day post-infection (dpi), with viremia lasting at least three days. The same number of SA01-infected animals developed viremia at 2 dpi, but it only persisted through 3 dpi in one animal. The average virus titer for the SA01-infected calves was 1.6 logs less than for the Ken06-infected calves. Calves, inoculated with either strain, seroconverted by 5 dpi and showed time-dependent increases in their virus-neutralizing antibody titers. Consistent with the results obtained in the previous sheep study, elevated liver enzyme levels, more severe liver pathology and higher virus titers occurred with the Ken06 strain as compared to the SA01 strain. These results demonstrate the establishment of a virulent challenge model for vaccine evaluation in calves. PMID:27223298

  17. Broad Spectrum Antiviral Activity of Favipiravir (T-705): Protection from Highly Lethal Inhalational Rift Valley Fever

    PubMed Central

    Caroline, Amy L.; Powell, Diana S.; Bethel, Laura M.; Oury, Tim D.; Reed, Douglas S.; Hartman, Amy L.

    2014-01-01

    Background Development of antiviral drugs that have broad-spectrum activity against a number of viral infections would be of significant benefit. Due to the evolution of resistance to currently licensed antiviral drugs, development of novel anti-influenza drugs is in progress, including Favipiravir (T-705), which is currently in human clinical trials. T-705 displays broad-spectrum in vitro activity against a number of viruses, including Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV). RVF is an important neglected tropical disease that causes human, agricultural, and economic losses in endemic regions. RVF has the capacity to emerge in new locations and also presents a potential bioterrorism threat. In the current study, the in vivo efficacy of T-705 was evaluated in Wistar-Furth rats infected with the virulent ZH501 strain of RVFV by the aerosol route. Methodology/Principal Findings Wistar-Furth rats are highly susceptible to a rapidly lethal disease after parenteral or inhalational exposure to the pathogenic ZH501 strain of RVFV. In the current study, two experiments were performed: a dose-determination study and a delayed-treatment study. In both experiments, all untreated control rats succumbed to disease. Out of 72 total rats infected with RVFV and treated with T-705, only 6 succumbed to disease. The remaining 66 rats (92%) survived lethal infection with no significant weight loss or fever. The 6 treated rats that succumbed survived significantly longer before succumbing to encephalitic disease. Conclusions/Significance Currently, there are no licensed antiviral drugs for treating RVF. Here, T-705 showed remarkable efficacy in a highly lethal rat model of Rift Valley Fever, even when given up to 48 hours post-infection. This is the first study to show protection of rats infected with the pathogenic ZH501 strain of RVFV. Our data suggest that T-705 has potential to be a broad-spectrum antiviral drug. PMID:24722586

  18. The effect of Rift Valley fever virus Clone 13 vaccine on semen quality in rams.

    PubMed

    Brown, Geoff; Venter, Estelle H; Morley, Paul; Annandale, Henry

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an arthropod-borne viral disease of importance in livestock and humans. Epidemics occur periodically in domestic ruminants. People in contact with infected livestock may develop disease that varies from mild flu-like symptoms to fatal viraemia. Livestock vaccination may assist in disease control. Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) Clone 13 is a relatively new vaccine against RVF, derived from an avirulent natural mutant strain of RVFV, and has been shown to confer protective immunity against experimental infection with RVFV. The hypothesis tested in the current trial was that rams vaccinated with RVFV Clone 13 vaccine would not experience a reduction in semen quality (measured by evaluating the percentage progressively motile and percentage morphologically normal spermatozoa in successive ejaculates) relative to unvaccinated control animals. Ram lambs were screened for antibodies to RVFV using a serum neutralisation test. Animals without detectable antibodies (n = 23) were randomly allocated to either a test group (n = 12) or a control group (n = 11). Animals in the test group were vaccinated with RVFV Clone 13 vaccine. Daily rectal temperature measurements and weekly semen and blood samples were taken from all animals. Seven animals were eliminated from the statistical analysis because of potential confounding factors. Logistic regression analysis was performed on data gathered from the remaining animals to determine whether an association existed between animal group, rectal temperature and semen quality parameters. No correlation existed between the treatment group and values obtained for the semen quality parameters measured. There was no statistically significant post-vaccination decline in the percentage of live morphologically normal spermatozoa, or the percentage of progressively motile spermatozoa, either when assessed amongst all animals or when assessed within individual groups. A repeat study with a larger sample size and a more

  19. The effect of Rift Valley fever virus Clone 13 vaccine on semen quality in rams.

    PubMed

    Brown, Geoff; Venter, Estelle H; Morley, Paul; Annandale, Henry

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an arthropod-borne viral disease of importance in livestock and humans. Epidemics occur periodically in domestic ruminants. People in contact with infected livestock may develop disease that varies from mild flu-like symptoms to fatal viraemia. Livestock vaccination may assist in disease control. Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) Clone 13 is a relatively new vaccine against RVF, derived from an avirulent natural mutant strain of RVFV, and has been shown to confer protective immunity against experimental infection with RVFV. The hypothesis tested in the current trial was that rams vaccinated with RVFV Clone 13 vaccine would not experience a reduction in semen quality (measured by evaluating the percentage progressively motile and percentage morphologically normal spermatozoa in successive ejaculates) relative to unvaccinated control animals. Ram lambs were screened for antibodies to RVFV using a serum neutralisation test. Animals without detectable antibodies (n = 23) were randomly allocated to either a test group (n = 12) or a control group (n = 11). Animals in the test group were vaccinated with RVFV Clone 13 vaccine. Daily rectal temperature measurements and weekly semen and blood samples were taken from all animals. Seven animals were eliminated from the statistical analysis because of potential confounding factors. Logistic regression analysis was performed on data gathered from the remaining animals to determine whether an association existed between animal group, rectal temperature and semen quality parameters. No correlation existed between the treatment group and values obtained for the semen quality parameters measured. There was no statistically significant post-vaccination decline in the percentage of live morphologically normal spermatozoa, or the percentage of progressively motile spermatozoa, either when assessed amongst all animals or when assessed within individual groups. A repeat study with a larger sample size and a more

  20. Searching for evidence of changes in extreme rainfall indices in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh, Alemayehu; Bewket, Woldeamlak; Keesstra, Saskia; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2016-02-01

    Extreme rainfall events have serious implications for economic sectors with a close link to climate such as agriculture and food security. This holds true in the Central Rift Valley (CRV) of Ethiopia where communities rely on highly climate-sensitive rainfed subsistence farming for livelihoods. This study investigates changes in ten extreme rainfall indices over a period of 40 years (1970-2009) using 14 meteorological stations located in the CRV. The CRV consists of three landscape units: the valley floor, the escarpments, and the highlands all of which are considered in our data analysis. The Belg (March-May) and Kiremt (June-September) seasons are also considered in the analysis. The Mann-Kendall test was used to detect trends of the rainfall indices. The results indicated that at the annual time scale, more than half (57 %) of the stations showed significant trends in total wet-day precipitation (PRCPTOT) and heavy precipitation days (R10mm). Only 7-35 % of stations showed significant trends, for the other rainfall indices. Spatially, the valley floor received increasing annual rainfall while the escarpments and the highlands received decreasing annual rainfall over the last 40 years. During Belg, 50 % of the stations showed significant increases in the maximum number of consecutive dry days (CDD) in all parts of the CRV. However, most other rainfall indices during Belg showed no significant changes. During Kiremt, considering both significant and non-significant trends, almost all rainfall indices showed an increasing trend in the valley floor and a decreasing trend in the escarpment and highlands. During Belg and Kiremt, the CDD generally showed increasing tendency in the CRV.

  1. Initiation and development of the Kivu rift segment in Central Africa by reactivating un-favorably oriented structural weaknesses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delvaux, Damien; Smets, Benoît

    2015-04-01

    The Kivu rift region forms the central segment of the western branch of the East African rift system, between the northern termination of the Tanganyika rift and the southern extension of the Edward-George rift. Its structure and geological evolution has been revised in the light of a compilation of existing data on earthquake epicenters, focal depth, focal mechanisms, thermal springs and neotectonic faults. It has long been shown that the link between the Kivu rift basin and the Northern termination of the Tanganyika rift basin forms an accommodation zone in which the Rusizi tectonic depression occupies a central place (Ebinger, 1989). In addition, our compilation suggests that the NNE-trending Kivu rift basin and the N-S northern half of the Tanganyika rift basin initiated as separated, partly overlapping and differently oriented basins. The orientation and development of the Kivu rift basin was controlled by an inferred Mid-Proterozoic crustal shear zone and a Pan-African reverse fault front. It was not optimally oriented with the general (first-order) stress field characterized by roughly E-W extension. In a later stage, the more optimally N-S oriented North Tanganyika basin progressed towards the North and connected to Kivu rift in its middle in a region now occupied by the town of Bukavu. This accommodation zone is marked by Quaternary volcanism, warm thermal springs, frequent and relatively shallow seismicity. The southwestern part of the Kivu rift became progressively abandoned but it is still seismically active and hosts a number of warm thermal springs. This particular architecture influences the present-day stress field. This work is a contribution to the Belgian GeoRisCA project. Ebinger, C.J. 1989. Geometric and kinematic development of border faults and accommodation zones, Kivu-Rusizi Rift, Africa. Tectonics, 8, 117-133

  2. Identification of central Kenyan Rift Valley Fever virus vector habitats with Landsat TM and evaluation of their flooding status with airborne imaging radar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pope, K. O.; Sheffner, E. J.; Linthicum, K. J.; Bailey, C. L.; Logan, T. M.; Kasischke, E. S.; Birney, K.; Njogu, A. R.; Roberts, C. R.

    1992-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne virus that affects livestock and humans in Africa. Landsat TM data are shown to be effective in identifying dambos, intermittently flooded areas that are potential mosquite breeding sites, in an area north of Nairobi, Kenya. Positive results were obtained from a limited test of flood detection in dambos with airborne high resolution L, C, and X band multipolarization SAR imagery. L and C bands were effective in detecting flooded dambos, but LHH was by far the best channel for discrimination between flooded and nonflooded sites in both sedge and short-grass environments. This study demonstrates the feasibility of a combined passive and active remote sensing program for monitoring the location and condition of RVF vector habitats, thus making future control of the disease more promising.

  3. Lake-groundwater relationships and fluid-rock interaction in the East African Rift Valley: isotopic evidence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darling, W. George; Gizaw, Berhanu; Arusei, Musa K.

    1996-05-01

    The assessment of water resources in the Rift Valley environment is important for population, agriculture and energy-related issues and depends on a good understanding of the relationship between freshwater lakes and regional groundwater. This can be hampered by the amount of fluid-rock interaction which occurs throughout the rift, obscuring original hydrochemical signatures. However, O and H stable isotope ratios can be used as tracers of infiltration over sometimes considerable distances, while showing that the volcanic edifices of the rift floor have varying effects on groundwater flow patterns. Specific cases from Kenya and Ethiopia are considered, including Lakes Naivasha, Baringo, Awasa and Zwai. In addition to their physical tracing role, stable isotopes can reveal information about processes of fluid-rock interaction. The general lack of O isotope shifting in rift hydrothermal systems suggests a high water:rock ratio, with the implication that these systems are mature. Carbon isotope studies on the predominantly bicarbonate waters of the rift show how they evolve from dilute meteoric recharge to highly alkaline waters, via the widespread silicate hydrolysis promoted by the flux of mantle carbon dioxide which occurs in most parts of the rift. There appears to be only minor differences in the C cycle between Kenya and Ethiopia.

  4. Preliminary survey of domestic animals of the Sudan for precipitating antibodies to Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed Central

    Eisa, M.

    1984-01-01

    In a preliminary seroepidemiological survey a total of 780 serum samples derived from various domestic animals of the Sudan were examined for Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus precipitating antibodies. The incidence was approximately 34.3% in sheep, 33.2% in cattle, 22% in goats, 7.9% in camels and 4% in donkeys. The findings indicated that RVF is mainly prevalent in the rich savanna areas of the south as well as the irrigated areas close to the Nile in the north. Circumstantial evidence suggests that the detected antibodies were induced by a long-standing cryptically cycling infection and that resurgence of extensive epizootics is unlikely although limited outbreaks may occur. It is concluded that RVF virus circulates across the country in a south-north range along the Nile Valley with little or no extension to the drier lands to the east and west, and that ruminants are the primary species involved in virus maintenance. These species evidently serve as main amplifiers of infection during epizootics, but whether or not they also serve as sole virus reservoirs in inter-epizootic periods has yet to be determined. PMID:6512261

  5. The L, M, and S Segments of Rift Valley Fever Virus MP-12 Vaccine Independently Contribute to a Temperature-Sensitive Phenotype

    PubMed Central

    Nishiyama, Shoko; Lokugamage, Nandadeva

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Rift Valley fever (RVF) is endemic to Africa, and the mosquito-borne disease is characterized by “abortion storms” in ruminants and by hemorrhagic fever, encephalitis, and blindness in humans. Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV; family Bunyaviridae, genus Phlebovirus) has a tripartite negative-stranded RNA genome (L, M, and S segments). A live-attenuated vaccine for RVF, the MP-12 vaccine, is conditionally licensed for veterinary use in the United States. MP-12 is fully attenuated by the combination of the partially attenuated L, M, and S segments. Temperature sensitivity (ts) limits viral replication at a restrictive temperature and may be involved with viral attenuation. In this study, we aimed to characterize the ts mutations for MP-12. The MP-12 vaccine showed restricted replication at 38°C and replication shutoff (100-fold or greater reduction in virus titer compared to that at 37°C) at 39°C in Vero and MRC-5 cells. Using rZH501 reassortants with either the MP-12 L, M, or S segment, we found that all three segments encode a temperature-sensitive phenotype. However, the ts phenotype of the S segment was weaker than that of the M or L segment. We identified Gn-Y259H, Gc-R1182G, L-V172A, and L-M1244I as major ts mutations for MP-12. The ts mutations in the L segment decreased viral RNA synthesis, while those in the M segment delayed progeny production from infected cells. We also found that a lack of NSs and/or 78kD/NSm protein expression minimally affected the ts phenotype. Our study revealed that MP-12 is a unique vaccine carrying ts mutations in the L, M, and S segments. IMPORTANCE Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral disease endemic to Africa, characterized by high rates of abortion in ruminants and severe diseases in humans. Vaccination is important to prevent the spread of disease, and a live-attenuated MP-12 vaccine is currently the only vaccine with a conditional license in the United States. This study determined the temperature

  6. NSs Virulence Factor of Rift Valley Fever Virus Engages the F-Box Proteins FBXW11 and β-TRCP1 To Degrade the Antiviral Protein Kinase PKR

    PubMed Central

    Kainulainen, Markus; Lau, Simone; Samuel, Charles E.; Hornung, Veit

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV, family Bunyaviridae, genus Phlebovirus) is a relevant pathogen of both humans and livestock in Africa. The nonstructural protein NSs is a major virulence factor known to suppress the type I interferon (IFN) response by inhibiting host cell transcription and by proteasomal degradation of a major antiviral IFN effector, the translation-inhibiting protein kinase PKR. Here, we identified components of the modular SCF (Skp1, Cul1, F-box protein)-type E3 ubiquitin ligases as mediators of PKR destruction by NSs. Small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) against the conserved SCF subunit Skp1 protected PKR from NSs-mediated degradation. Consequently, RVFV replication was severely reduced in Skp1-depleted cells when PKR was present. SCF complexes have a variable F-box protein subunit that determines substrate specificity for ubiquitination. We performed an siRNA screen for all (about 70) human F-box proteins and found FBXW11 to be involved in PKR degradation. The partial stabilization of PKR by FBXW11 depletion upregulated PKR autophosphorylation and phosphorylation of the PKR substrate eIF2α and caused a shutoff of host cell protein synthesis in RVFV-infected cells. To maximally protect PKR from the action of NSs, knockdown of structurally and functionally related FBXW1 (also known as β-TRCP1), in addition to FBXW11 deletion, was necessary. Consequently, NSs was found to interact with both FBXW11 and β-TRCP1. Thus, NSs eliminates the antiviral kinase PKR by recruitment of SCF-type E3 ubiquitin ligases containing FBXW11 and β-TRCP1 as substrate recognition subunits. This antagonism of PKR by NSs is essential for efficient RVFV replication in mammalian cells. IMPORTANCE Rift Valley fever virus is a pathogen of humans and animals that has the potential to spread from Africa and the Arabian Peninsula to other regions. A major virulence mechanism is the proteasomal degradation of the antiviral kinase PKR by the viral protein NSs. Here, we

  7. Evaluating spatial and temporal variations of rainfall erosivity, case of Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meshesha, Derege Tsegaye; Tsunekawa, Atsushi; Tsubo, Mitsuru; Haregeweyn, Nigussie; Adgo, Enyew

    2015-02-01

    Land degradation in many Ethiopian highlands occurs mainly due to high rainfall erosivity and poor soil conservation practices. Rainfall erosivity is an indicator of the precipitation energy and ability to cause soil erosion. In Central Rift Valley (CRV) of Ethiopia, where the climate is characterized as arid and semiarid, rainfall is the main driver of soil erosion that in turn causes a serious expansion in land degradation. In order to evaluate the spatial and temporal variability of rainfall erosivity and its impact on soil erosion, long-term rainfall data (1980-2010) was used, and the monthly Fournier index (FI) and the annual modified Fournier index (MFI) were applied. Student's t test analysis was performed particularly to examine statistical significances of differences in average monthly and annual erosivity values. The result indicated that, in a similar spatial pattern with elevation and rainfall amount, average annual erosivity is also found being higher in western highlands of the valley and gradually decreased towards the east. The long-term average annual erosivity (MFI) showed a general decreasing trend in recent 10 years (2000-2010) as compared to previous 20 years (1980-1999). In most of the stations, average erosivity of main rainy months (May, June, July, and August) showed a decreasing trend, whereby some of them (about 33.3 %) are statically significant at 90 and 95 % confidence intervals but with high variation in spatial pattern of changes. The overall result of the study showed that rainfall aggression (erosivity) in the region has a general decreasing trend in the recent decade as compared to previous decades, especially in the western highlands of the valley. Hence, it implies that anthropogenic factors such as land use change being coupled with topography (steep slope) have largely contributed to increased soil erosion rate in the region.

  8. Topography, river network and recent fault activity at the margins of the Central Main Ethiopian Rift (East Africa)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molin, Paola; Corti, Giacomo; Sembroni, Andrea

    2016-04-01

    Along its length, the Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) in East Africa records a transition from early fault-dominated morphology in the South to axial magma assisted-rifting typical of continental break-up in the North. It is one of the few locations on Earth offering a complete picture of the evolution of continental rifting and thus provides a unique opportunity to directly analyze how the drainage network reorganize under extensional tectonic forcing. In this paper we present a new analysis of the river network and relative landforms - complemented with a summary of recent geological data - at both rift margins of the Central MER, a key sector of the rift capturing the phase of drainage reorganization between incipient and mature rifting. This analysis shows that hydrography is strongly influenced by recent tectonics. Rectangular drainage patterns, windgaps, and lacustrine/swampy areas formed by structural dams document that the rivers are in continuous competition with fault activity. The irregular longitudinal profiles (with knickpoints/knickzones in correspondence with faults) also suggest that rivers are in a transient state of disequilibrium related to recent tectonic activity at rift margins, in agreement with previous geological and seismological data. A more regional analysis extended to the adjoining Northern and Southern MER indicates that rifting evolves from initial stages characterized by margins poorly incised by rivers with gentle channel gradients (except in correspondence with faults), to mature phases in which rift margins are highly incised by a well organized fluvial network composed by concave and steep rivers. Our regional analysis also indicates a stronger and/or more recent tectonic activity at the rift margins proceeding to the south, in line with previous models of rift development.

  9. Topography, river network and recent fault activity at the margins of the Central Main Ethiopian Rift (East Africa)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molin, Paola; Corti, Giacomo

    2015-11-01

    Along its length, the Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) in East Africa records a transition from early fault-dominated morphology in the South to axial magma assisted-rifting typical of continental break-up in the North. It is one of the few locations on Earth offering a complete picture of the evolution of continental rifting and thus provides a unique opportunity to directly analyze how the drainage network reorganizes under extensional tectonic forcing. In this paper we present a new analysis of the river network and relative landforms-complemented with a summary of recent geological data-at both rift margins of the Central MER, a key sector of the rift capturing the phase of drainage reorganization between incipient and mature rifting. This analysis shows that hydrography is strongly influenced by recent tectonics. Rectangular drainage patterns, windgaps, and lacustrine/swampy areas formed by structural dams document that the rivers are in continuous competition with fault activity. The irregular longitudinal profiles (with knickpoints/knickzones in correspondence with faults) also suggest that rivers are in a transient state of disequilibrium related to recent tectonic activity at rift margins, in agreement with previous geological and seismological data. A more regional analysis extended to the adjoining Northern and Southern MER indicates that rifting evolves from initial stages characterized by margins poorly incised by rivers with gentle channel gradients (except in correspondence with faults), to mature phases in which rift margins are highly incised by a well organized fluvial network composed by concave and steep rivers. Our regional analysis also indicates a stronger and/or more recent tectonic activity at the rift margins proceeding to the south, in line with previous models of rift development.

  10. Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices (KAP) on Rift Valley Fever among Pastoralist Communities of Ijara District, North Eastern Kenya.

    PubMed

    Abdi, Ismail H; Affognon, Hippolyte D; Wanjoya, Anthony K; Onyango-Ouma, Washington; Sang, Rosemary

    2015-11-01

    Outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis, have previously been associated with unusually heavy rainfall and extensive flooding. The disease is a serious public health problem in Africa and the Middle East, and is a potential global health threat. In Kenya, outbreaks of the disease have disproportionately affected impoverished pastoralist communities. This study sought to assess the knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) regarding RVF among the pastoralists of North Eastern Kenya, and to establish the determinants of KAP on RVF. A cross-sectional study involving 392 pastoralists living in Ijara district (Masalani and Ijara wards) was carried out using an interview questionnaire. All respondents interviewed (100%) had heard about RVF disease. They recognized that the disease is dangerous (99%), and had a positive attitude towards vaccination of animals (77%). However, few respondents knew that abortion (11%) and high mortality of young animals (10%) were key signs of RVF in animals. Very few (4%) use any form of protection when handling sick animals to avoid infection. Significant factors associated with knowledge were being in a household with a history of RVF infection (OR = 1.262, 95% CI = 1.099-1.447), having more livestock (OR = 1.285, 95% CI = 1.175-1.404) and the place of residence, Masalani (OR = 0.526, 95% CI = 0.480-0.576). Overall knowledge score on RVF was found to be a significant predictor of good preventive practice of the disease (OR = 1.073, 95% CI = 1.047-1.101). Despite the positive attitude that pastoralist communities have towards the prevention of RVF, there exist gaps in knowledge and good practices on the disease. Therefore there is need for public health education to address these gaps, and to identify and facilitate the removal of barriers to behavioural change related to the prevention of RVF. PMID:26566218

  11. Reverse-phase phosphoproteome analysis of signaling pathways induced by Rift valley fever virus in human small airway epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Popova, Taissia G; Turell, Michael J; Espina, Virginia; Kehn-Hall, Kylene; Kidd, Jessica; Narayanan, Aarthi; Liotta, Lance; Petricoin, Emanuel F; Kashanchi, Fatah; Bailey, Charles; Popov, Serguei G

    2010-01-01

    Rift valley fever virus (RVFV) infection is an emerging zoonotic disease endemic in many countries of sub-Saharan Africa and in Egypt. In this study we show that human small airway epithelial cells are highly susceptible to RVFV virulent strain ZH-501 and the attenuated strain MP-12. We used the reverse-phase protein arrays technology to identify phosphoprotein signaling pathways modulated during infection of cultured airway epithelium. ZH-501 infection induced activation of MAP kinases (p38, JNK and ERK) and downstream transcriptional factors [STAT1 (Y701), ATF2 (T69/71), MSK1 (S360) and CREB (S133)]. NF-κB phosphorylation was also increased. Activation of p53 (S15, S46) correlated with the increased levels of cleaved effector caspase-3, -6 and -7, indicating activation of the extrinsic apoptotic pathway. RVFV infection downregulated phosphorylation of a major anti-apoptotic regulator of survival pathways, AKT (S473), along with phosphorylation of FOX 01/03 (T24/31) which controls cell cycle arrest downstream from AKT. Consistent with this, the level of apoptosis inhibitor XIAP was decreased. However, the intrinsic apoptotic pathway marker, caspase-9, demonstrated only a marginal activation accompanied by an increased level of the inhibitor of apoptosome formation, HSP27. Concentration of the autophagy marker, LC3B, which often accompanies the pro-survival signaling, was decreased. Cumulatively, our analysis of RVFV infection in lung epithelium indicated a viral strategy directed toward the control of cell apoptosis through a number of transcriptional factors. Analyses of MP-12 titers in challenged cells in the presence of MAPK inhibitors indicated that activation of p38 represents a protective cell response while ERK activation controls viral replication. PMID:21072193

  12. Dynamic risk model for Rift Valley fever outbreaks in Kenya based on climate and disease outbreak data.

    PubMed

    Gikungu, David; Wakhungu, Jacob; Siamba, Donald; Neyole, Edward; Muita, Richard; Bett, Bernard

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral zoonotic disease that occurs throughout sub-Saharan Africa, Egypt and the Arabian Peninsula, with heavy impact in affected countries. Outbreaks are episodic and related to climate variability, especially rainfall and flooding. Despite great strides towards better prediction of RVF epidemics, there is still no observed climate data-based warning system with sufficient lead time for appropriate response and mitigation. We present a dynamic risk model based on historical RVF outbreaks and observed meteorological data. The model uses 30-year data on rainfall, temperature, relative humidity, normalised difference vegetation index and sea surface temperature data as predictors. Our research on RVF focused on Garissa, Murang'a and Kwale counties in Kenya using a research design based on a correlational, experimental, and evaluational approach. The weather data were obtained from the Kenya Meteorological Department while the RVF data were acquired from International Livestock Research Institute, and the Department of Veterinary Services. Performance of the model was evaluated by using the first 70% of the data for calibration and the remaining 30% for validation. The assessed components of the model accurately predicted already observed RVF events. The Brier score for each of the models (ranging from 0.007 to 0.022) indicated high skill. The coefficient of determination (R2) was higher in Garissa (0.66) than in Murang'a (0.21) and Kwale (0.16). The discrepancy was attributed to data distribution differences and varying ecosystems. The model outputs should complement existing early warning systems to detect risk factors that predispose for RVF outbreaks. PMID:27245792

  13. Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices (KAP) on Rift Valley Fever among Pastoralist Communities of Ijara District, North Eastern Kenya.

    PubMed

    Abdi, Ismail H; Affognon, Hippolyte D; Wanjoya, Anthony K; Onyango-Ouma, Washington; Sang, Rosemary

    2015-11-01

    Outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis, have previously been associated with unusually heavy rainfall and extensive flooding. The disease is a serious public health problem in Africa and the Middle East, and is a potential global health threat. In Kenya, outbreaks of the disease have disproportionately affected impoverished pastoralist communities. This study sought to assess the knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) regarding RVF among the pastoralists of North Eastern Kenya, and to establish the determinants of KAP on RVF. A cross-sectional study involving 392 pastoralists living in Ijara district (Masalani and Ijara wards) was carried out using an interview questionnaire. All respondents interviewed (100%) had heard about RVF disease. They recognized that the disease is dangerous (99%), and had a positive attitude towards vaccination of animals (77%). However, few respondents knew that abortion (11%) and high mortality of young animals (10%) were key signs of RVF in animals. Very few (4%) use any form of protection when handling sick animals to avoid infection. Significant factors associated with knowledge were being in a household with a history of RVF infection (OR = 1.262, 95% CI = 1.099-1.447), having more livestock (OR = 1.285, 95% CI = 1.175-1.404) and the place of residence, Masalani (OR = 0.526, 95% CI = 0.480-0.576). Overall knowledge score on RVF was found to be a significant predictor of good preventive practice of the disease (OR = 1.073, 95% CI = 1.047-1.101). Despite the positive attitude that pastoralist communities have towards the prevention of RVF, there exist gaps in knowledge and good practices on the disease. Therefore there is need for public health education to address these gaps, and to identify and facilitate the removal of barriers to behavioural change related to the prevention of RVF.

  14. Dynamic risk model for Rift Valley fever outbreaks in Kenya based on climate and disease outbreak data.

    PubMed

    Gikungu, David; Wakhungu, Jacob; Siamba, Donald; Neyole, Edward; Muita, Richard; Bett, Bernard

    2016-05-31

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral zoonotic disease that occurs throughout sub-Saharan Africa, Egypt and the Arabian Peninsula, with heavy impact in affected countries. Outbreaks are episodic and related to climate variability, especially rainfall and flooding. Despite great strides towards better prediction of RVF epidemics, there is still no observed climate data-based warning system with sufficient lead time for appropriate response and mitigation. We present a dynamic risk model based on historical RVF outbreaks and observed meteorological data. The model uses 30-year data on rainfall, temperature, relative humidity, normalised difference vegetation index and sea surface temperature data as predictors. Our research on RVF focused on Garissa, Murang'a and Kwale counties in Kenya using a research design based on a correlational, experimental, and evaluational approach. The weather data were obtained from the Kenya Meteorological Department while the RVF data were acquired from International Livestock Research Institute, and the Department of Veterinary Services. Performance of the model was evaluated by using the first 70% of the data for calibration and the remaining 30% for validation. The assessed components of the model accurately predicted already observed RVF events. The Brier score for each of the models (ranging from 0.007 to 0.022) indicated high skill. The coefficient of determination (R2) was higher in Garissa (0.66) than in Murang'a (0.21) and Kwale (0.16). The discrepancy was attributed to data distribution differences and varying ecosystems. The model outputs should complement existing early warning systems to detect risk factors that predispose for RVF outbreaks.

  15. A need for One Health approach – lessons learned from outbreaks of Rift Valley fever in Saudi Arabia and Sudan

    PubMed Central

    Hassan, Osama Ahmed; Ahlm, Clas; Evander, Magnus

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an emerging viral zoonosis that impacts human and animal health. It is transmitted from animals to humans directly through exposure to blood, body fluids, or tissues of infected animals or via mosquito bites. The disease is endemic to Africa but has recently spread to Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Our aim was to compare two major outbreaks of RVF in Saudi Arabia (2000) and Sudan (2007) from a One Health perspective. Methods Using the terms ‘Saudi Arabia’, ‘Sudan’, and ‘RVF’, articles were identified by searching PubMed, Google Scholar, and web pages of international organizations as well as local sources in Saudi Arabia and Sudan. Results The outbreak in Saudi Arabia caused 883 human cases, with a case fatality rate of 14% and more than 40,000 dead sheep and goats. In Sudan, 698 human cases of RVF were recognized (case fatality, 31.5%), but no records of affected animals were available. The ecology and environment of the affected areas were similar with irrigation canals and excessive rains providing an attractive habitat for mosquito vectors to multiply. The outbreaks resulted in livestock trade bans leading to a vast economic impact on the animal market in the two countries. The surveillance system in Sudan showed a lack of data management and communication between the regional and federal health authorities, while in Saudi Arabia which is the stronger economy, better capacity and contingency plans resulted in efficient countermeasures. Studies of the epidemiology and vectors were also performed in Saudi Arabia, while in Sudan these issues were only partly studied. Conclusion We conclude that a One Health approach is the best option to mitigate outbreaks of RVF. Collaboration between veterinary, health, and environmental authorities both on national and regional levels is needed. PMID:24505511

  16. Association of Symptoms and Severity of Rift Valley Fever with Genetic Polymorphisms in Human Innate Immune Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Hise, Amy G.; Traylor, Zachary; Hall, Noémi B.; Sutherland, Laura J.; Dahir, Saidi; Ermler, Megan E.; Muiruri, Samuel; Muchiri, Eric M.; Kazura, James W.; LaBeaud, A. Desirée; King, Charles H.; Stein, Catherine M.

    2015-01-01

    Background Multiple recent outbreaks of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) in Africa, Madagascar, and the Arabian Peninsula have resulted in significant morbidity, mortality, and financial loss due to related livestock epizootics. Presentation of human RVF varies from mild febrile illness to meningoencephalitis, hemorrhagic diathesis, and/or ophthalmitis with residual retinal scarring, but the determinants for severe disease are not understood. The aim of the present study was to identify human genes associated with RVF clinical disease in a high-risk population in Northeastern Province, Kenya. Methodology/Principal Findings We conducted a cross-sectional survey among residents (N = 1,080; 1–85 yrs) in 6 villages in the Sangailu Division of Ijara District. Participants completed questionnaires on past symptoms and exposures, physical exam, vision testing, and blood collection. Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) genotyping was performed on a subset of individuals who reported past clinical symptoms consistent with RVF and unrelated subjects. Four symptom clusters were defined: meningoencephalitis, hemorrhagic fever, eye disease, and RVF-not otherwise specified. SNPs in 46 viral sensing and response genes were investigated. Association was analyzed between SNP genotype, serology and RVF symptom clusters. The meningoencephalitis symptom phenotype cluster among seropositive patients was associated with polymorphisms in DDX58/RIG-I and TLR8. Having three or more RVF-related symptoms was significantly associated with polymorphisms in TICAM1/TRIF, MAVS, IFNAR1 and DDX58/RIG-I. SNPs significantly associated with eye disease included three different polymorphisms TLR8 and hemorrhagic fever symptoms associated with TLR3, TLR7, TLR8 and MyD88. Conclusions/Significance Of the 46 SNPs tested, TLR3, TLR7, TLR8, MyD88, TRIF, MAVS, and RIG-I were repeatedly associated with severe symptomatology, suggesting that these genes may have a robust association with RVFV-associated clinical

  17. Gravity-driven structures and rift basin evolution: Rio Muni Basin, offshore equatorial West Africa

    SciTech Connect

    Turner, J.P.

    1995-08-01

    Offshore Equatorial Guinea, west Africa, gravity-driven nappes, more than 1 km thick and 15 km from head to toe, provide key evidence in reconstructing the late synrift: evolution of this part of the South Atlantic margin basin system. Furthermore, Aptian-Cenomanian carbonate and clastic rocks in the nappes` allochthonous hanging walls are attracting interest as a new exploration play in west Africa. The nappes exhibit a range of geometries that suggest they share many of the same deformation processes as thin-skin thrust and linked extensional fault systems. Not only are these structures significant in their own right, representing a rare example of gravity tectonics in the virtual absence of major halokinesis, but their presence may record an other-wise undetectable process active during the transition from a rift basin to a passive continental margin. A review of Equatorial Guinea in its pre-Atlantic configuration, alongside neighboring basins in Brazil (the Sergipe-Alagoas basin) and Gabon, suggests that gravity gliding was sustained by a relatively steep, westward paleoslope promoted by east-ward offset of the locus of thermal uplift from the rift basin (i.e., a simple shear model of basin formation). In contrast to gravity-driven structures in most postrift settings, the Equatorial Guinea nappes developed at the close of the Aptian-Albian synrift episode in response to a growing bathymetric deep caused by rapid subsidence outpacing restricted sedimentation.

  18. The origin of hydrothermal and other gases in the Kenya Rift Valley

    SciTech Connect

    Darling, W.G.; Griesshaber, E.; Andrews, J.N.

    1995-06-01

    The Kenya Rift Valley (KRV) is part of a major continental rift system from which much outgassing is presently occurring. Previous research on gases in the KRV has tended to concentrate on their geothermal implications; the present paper is an attempt to broaden the interpretation by consideration of new data including helium and carbon isotope analyses from a wide cross-section of sites. In order to do this, gases have been divided into categories dependent on origin. N{sub 2} and noble gases are for the most part atmospherically derived, although their relative concentrations may be altered from ASW ratios by various physical processes. Reduced carbon (CH{sub 4} and homologues) appears to be exclusively derived from the shallow crust, with thermogenic {delta}{sup 13}C values averaging -25{per_thousand} PDB for CH{sub 4}. H{sub 2} is likely also to be crustally formed. CO{sub 2}, generally a dominant constituent, has a narrow {delta}{sup 13}C range averaging -3.7{per_thousand} PDB, and is likely to be derived with little modification from the upper mantle. Consideration of the ratio C/{sup 3}He supports this view in most cases. Sulphur probably also originates there. Ratios of {sup 3}He/{sup 4}He reach a MORB-like maximum of 8.0 R/R{sub A} and provide the best indication of an upper mantle source of gases beneath the KRV. A correlation between {sup 3}He/{sup 4}He and the hydrocarbon parameter log (C{sub 1}/{Sigma}C{sub 2-4}) appears to be primarily temperature related. The highest {sup 3}He/{sup 4}He ratios in spring waters are associated with basalts, perhaps because of the leaching of basalt glasses. There may be a structural control on {sup 3}He/{sup 4}He ratios in the KRV as a whole.

  19. Remote Sensing Contributions to Prediction and Risk Assessment of Natural Disasters Caused by Large Scale Rift Valley Fever Outbreaks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anyamba, Assaf; Linthicum, Kenneth J.; Small, Jennifer; Britch, S. C.; Tucker, C. J.

    2012-01-01

    Remotely sensed vegetation measurements for the last 30 years combined with other climate data sets such as rainfall and sea surface temperatures have come to play an important role in the study of the ecology of arthropod-borne diseases. We show that epidemics and epizootics of previously unpredictable Rift Valley fever are directly influenced by large scale flooding associated with the El Ni o/Southern Oscillation. This flooding affects the ecology of disease transmitting arthropod vectors through vegetation development and other bioclimatic factors. This information is now utilized to monitor, model, and map areas of potential Rift Valley fever outbreaks and is used as an early warning system for risk reduction of outbreaks to human and animal health, trade, and associated economic impacts. The continuation of such satellite measurements is critical to anticipating, preventing, and managing disease epidemics and epizootics and other climate-related disasters.

  20. Inter-epidemic Transmission of Rift Valley Fever in Livestock in the Kilombero River Valley, Tanzania: A Cross-Sectional Survey

    PubMed Central

    Sumaye, Robert D.; Geubbels, Eveline; Mbeyela, Edgar; Berkvens, Dirk

    2013-01-01

    Background In recent years, evidence of Rift Valley fever (RVF) transmission during inter-epidemic periods in parts of Africa has increasingly been reported. The inter-epidemic transmissions generally pass undetected where there is no surveillance in the livestock or human populations. We studied the presence of and the determinants for inter-epidemic RVF transmission in an area experiencing annual flooding in southern Tanzania. Methodology A cross-sectional sero-survey was conducted in randomly selected cattle, sheep and goats in the Kilombero river valley from May to August 2011, approximately four years after the 2006/07 RVF outbreak in Tanzania. The exposure status to RVF virus (RVFV) was determined using two commercial ELISA kits, detecting IgM and IgG antibodies in serum. Information about determinants was obtained through structured interviews with herd owners. Findings An overall seroprevalence of 11.3% (n = 1680) was recorded; 5.5% in animals born after the 2006/07 RVF outbreak and 22.7% in animals present during the outbreak. There was a linear increase in prevalence in the post-epidemic annual cohorts. Nine inhibition-ELISA positive samples were also positive for RVFV IgM antibodies indicating a recent infection. The spatial distribution of seroprevalence exhibited a few hotspots. The sex difference in seroprevalence in animals born after the previous epidemic was not significant (6.1% vs. 4.6% for females and males respectively, p = 0.158) whereas it was significant in animals present during the outbreak (26.0% vs. 7.8% for females and males respectively, p<0.001). Animals living >15 km from the flood plain were more likely to have antibodies than those living <5 km (OR 1.92; 95% CI 1.04–3.56). Species, breed, herd composition, grazing practices and altitude were not associated with seropositivity. Conclusion These findings indicate post-epidemic transmission of RVFV in the study area. The linear increase in seroprevalence in the post

  1. Roles of the Coding and Noncoding Regions of Rift Valley Fever Virus RNA Genome Segments in Viral RNA Packaging

    PubMed Central

    Murakami, Shin; Terasaki, Kaori; Narayanan, Krishna

    2012-01-01

    We characterized the RNA elements involved in the packaging of Rift Valley fever virus RNA genome segments, L, M, and S. The 5′-terminal 25 nucleotides of each RNA segment were equally competent for RNA packaging and carried an RNA packaging signal, which overlapped with the RNA replication signal. Only the deletion mutants of L RNA, but not full-length L RNA, were efficiently packaged, implying the possible requirement of RNA compaction for L RNA packaging. PMID:22278239

  2. Structure of the active rift zone and margins of the northern Imperial Valley from Salton Seismic Imaging Project (SSIP) data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Livers, A.; Han, L.; Delph, J. R.; White-Gaynor, A. L.; Petit, R.; Hole, J. A.; Stock, J. M.; Fuis, G. S.

    2012-12-01

    First-arrival refraction data were used to create a seismic velocity model of the upper crust across the actively rifting northern Imperial Valley and its margins. The densely sampled seismic refraction data were acquired by the Salton Seismic Imaging Project (SSIP) , which is investigating rift processes in the northern-most rift segment of the Gulf of California extensional province and earthquake hazards at the southern end of the San Andreas Fault system. A 95-km long seismic line was acquired across the northern Imperial Valley, through the Salton Sea geothermal field, parallel to the five Salton Butte volcanoes and perpendicular to the Brawley Seismic Zone and major strike-slip faults. Nineteen explosive shots were recorded with 100 m seismometer spacing across the valley and with 300-500 m spacing into the adjacent ranges. First-arrival travel times were picked from shot gathers along this line and a seismic velocity model was produced using tomographic inversion. Sedimentary basement and seismic basement in the valley are interpreted to be sediment metamorphosed by the very high heat flow. The velocity model shows that this basement to the west of the Brawley Seismic Zone is at ~4-km depth. The basement shallows to ~2-km depth in the active geothermal field and Salton Buttes volcanic field which locally coincide with the Brawley Seismic Zone. At the eastern edge of the geothermal field, the basement drops off again to ~3.5-km depth. The eastern edge of the valley appears to be fault bounded by the along-strike extension of the Sand Hills Fault, an inactive strike-slip fault. The seismic velocities to the east of the fault correspond to metamorphic rock of the Chocolate Mountains, different from the metamorphosed basement in the valley. The western edge of the valley appears to be fault bounded by the active Superstition Hills Fault. To the west of the valley, >4-km deep valley basement extends to the active Superstition Hills Fault. Basement then shallows

  3. Organochlorine pesticides in bird species and their prey (fish) from the Ethiopian Rift Valley region, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Yohannes, Yared Beyene; Ikenaka, Yoshinori; Nakayama, Shouta M M; Ishizuka, Mayumi

    2014-09-01

    Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) and stable isotopes were measured in muscle from 4 bird and 5 fish species from the Ethiopian Rift Valley region where DDT is used for malaria control and vast agricultural activities are carried out. We investigated the bioaccumulation of OCPs such as DDTs, HCHs, chlordanes, and heptachlors between the species, and examined the potential risk posed by these compounds for bird species. Significant differences in contaminant profiles and levels were observed within the species. Levels of total OCPs ranged from 3.7 to 148.7 μg/g lipid in bird and 0.04 to 10.9 μg/g lipid in fish species. DDTs were the predominant contaminant, and a positive relationship between δ(15)N and ΣDDT concentrations was found. The main DDT metabolite, p,p'-DDE was the most abundant and significantly greater concentrations in bird species (up to 138.5 μg/g lipid), which could have deleterious effects on survival and/or reproduction of birds. PMID:24907858

  4. Organochlorine pesticides in bird species and their prey (fish) from the Ethiopian Rift Valley region, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Yohannes, Yared Beyene; Ikenaka, Yoshinori; Nakayama, Shouta M M; Ishizuka, Mayumi

    2014-09-01

    Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) and stable isotopes were measured in muscle from 4 bird and 5 fish species from the Ethiopian Rift Valley region where DDT is used for malaria control and vast agricultural activities are carried out. We investigated the bioaccumulation of OCPs such as DDTs, HCHs, chlordanes, and heptachlors between the species, and examined the potential risk posed by these compounds for bird species. Significant differences in contaminant profiles and levels were observed within the species. Levels of total OCPs ranged from 3.7 to 148.7 μg/g lipid in bird and 0.04 to 10.9 μg/g lipid in fish species. DDTs were the predominant contaminant, and a positive relationship between δ(15)N and ΣDDT concentrations was found. The main DDT metabolite, p,p'-DDE was the most abundant and significantly greater concentrations in bird species (up to 138.5 μg/g lipid), which could have deleterious effects on survival and/or reproduction of birds.

  5. REE partitioning between apatite and melt in a peralkaline volcanic suite, Kenya Rift Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Macdonald, R.; Baginski, B.; Belkin, H.E.; Dzierzanowski, P.; Jezak, L.

    2009-01-01

    Electron microprobe analyses are presented for fluorapatite phenocrysts from a benmoreite-peralkaline rhyolite volcanic suite from the Kenya Rift Valley. The rocks have previously been well characterized petrographically and their crystallization conditions are reasonably well known. The REE contents in the M site increase towards the rhyolites, with a maximum britholite component of ~35 mol.%. Chondrite-normalized REE patterns are rather flat between La and Sm and then decrease towards Yb. Sodium and Fe occupy up to 1% and 4%, respectively, of the M site. The major coupled substitution is REE3+ + Si4+ ??? Ca2+ + P5+. The substitution REE3+ + Na+ ??? 2Ca2+ has been of minor importance. The relatively large Fe contents were perhaps facilitated by the low fo2 conditions of crystallization. Zoning is ubiquitous and resulted from both fractional crystallization and magma mixing. Apatites in some rhyolites are relatively Y-depleted, perhaps reflecting crystallization from melts which had precipitated zircon. Mineral/glass (melt) ratios for two rhyolites are unusually high, with maxima at Sm (762, 1123). ?? 2008 The Mineralogical Society.

  6. Virus-like particle-based countermeasures against Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Koukuntla, R; Mandell, R B; Flick, R

    2012-09-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arbovirus that causes significant morbidity and mortality in both humans and livestock. With increased world travel and the threat of bioterrorism, there is a real risk of RVFV spreading to naïve geographical areas (Trans. R. Soc. Trop. Med. Hyg., 73, 1979, 618; MMWR Morb. Mortal. Wkly Rep., 49, 2000, 905). The introduction of RVFV would cause critical public health, agricultural and economic damage. Despite the clear need for an efficacious vaccine, there are no United States (US) Food and Drug Administration or US Department of Agriculture approved vaccines against RVFV. To address this need, a virus-like particle (VLP)-based vaccine candidate was developed. First, a non-replicating chimeric RVF VLP vaccine candidate was generated that protected mice and rats against a lethal RVFV challenge. This was followed by the development and optimization of conditions for production of RVF VLPs in insect and mammalian cells. Immunological studies demonstrated that VLP-based vaccine candidates elicit both humoral and cellular immune responses. Subsequent challenge studies using a lethal wild-type RVFV strain under high-containment conditions showed that RVF VLP vaccine candidates can completely protect mice and rats. PMID:22958258

  7. IFITM-2 and IFITM-3 but Not IFITM-1 Restrict Rift Valley Fever Virus

    PubMed Central

    Mudhasani, Rajini; Tran, Julie P.; Retterer, Cary; Radoshitzky, Sheli R.; Kota, Krishna P.; Altamura, Louis A.; Smith, Jeffrey M.; Packard, Beverly Z.; Kuhn, Jens H.; Costantino, Julie; Garrison, Aura R.; Schmaljohn, Connie S.; Huang, I-Chueh; Farzan, Michael

    2013-01-01

    We show that interferon-induced transmembrane protein 1 (IFITM-1), IFITM-2, and IFITM-3 exhibit a broad spectrum of antiviral activity against several members of the Bunyaviridae family, including Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), La Crosse virus, Andes virus, and Hantaan virus, all of which can cause severe disease in humans and animals. We found that RVFV was restricted by IFITM-2 and -3 but not by IFITM-1, whereas the remaining viruses were equally restricted by all IFITMs. Indeed, at low doses of alpha interferon (IFN-α), IFITM-2 and -3 mediated more than half of the antiviral activity of IFN-α against RVFV. IFITM-2 and -3 restricted RVFV infection mostly by preventing virus membrane fusion with endosomes, while they had no effect on virion attachment to cells, endocytosis, or viral replication kinetics. We found that large fractions of IFITM-2 and IFITM-3 occupy vesicular compartments that are distinct from the vesicles coated by IFITM-1. In addition, although overexpression of all IFITMs expanded vesicular and acidified compartments within cells, there were marked phenotypic differences among the vesicular compartments occupied by IFITMs. Collectively, our data provide new insights into the possible mechanisms by which the IFITM family members restrict distinct viruses. PMID:23720721

  8. Interplay between the Virus and Host in Rift Valley Fever Pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Terasaki, Kaori; Makino, Shinji

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) belongs to the genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae, and carries single-stranded tripartite RNA segments. The virus is transmitted by mosquitoes and has caused large outbreaks among ruminants and humans in sub-Saharan African and Middle East countries. The disease is characterized by a sudden onset of fever, headache, muscle pain, joint pain, photophobia, and weakness. In most cases, patients recover from the disease after a period of weeks, but some also develop retinal or macular changes, which result in vision impairment that lasts for an undefined period of time, and severe disease, characterized by hemorrhagic fever or encephalitis. The virus also causes febrile illness resulting in a high rate of spontaneous abortions in ruminants. The handling of wild-type RVFV requires high-containment facilities, including biosafety level 4 or enhanced biosafety level 3 laboratories. Nonetheless, studies clarifying the mechanisms of the RVFV-induced diseases and preventing them are areas of active research throughout the world. By primarily referring to recent studies using several animal model systems, protein expression systems, and specific mutant viruses, this review describes the current knowledge about the mechanisms of pathogenesis of RVF and biological functions of various viral proteins that affect RVFV pathogenicity.

  9. Modeling the impact of climate change on the dynamics of Rift Valley Fever.

    PubMed

    Mpeshe, Saul C; Luboobi, Livingstone S; Nkansah-Gyekye, Yaw

    2014-01-01

    A deterministic SEIR model of rift valley fever (RVF) with climate change parameters was considered to compute the basic reproduction number ℛ 0 and investigate the impact of temperature and precipitation on ℛ 0. To study the effect of model parameters to ℛ 0, sensitivity and elasticity analysis of ℛ 0 were performed. When temperature and precipitation effects are not considered, ℛ 0 is more sensitive to the expected number of infected Aedes spp. due to one infected livestock and more elastic to the expected number of infected livestock due to one infected Aedes spp. When climatic data are used, ℛ 0 is found to be more sensitive and elastic to the expected number of infected eggs laid by Aedes spp. via transovarial transmission, followed by the expected number of infected livestock due to one infected Aedes spp. and the expected number of infected Aedes spp. due to one infected livestock for both regions Arusha and Dodoma. These results call for attention to parameters regarding incubation period, the adequate contact rate of Aedes spp. and livestock, the infective periods of livestock and Aedes spp., and the vertical transmission in Aedes species. PMID:24795775

  10. Could bats act as reservoir hosts for Rift Valley fever virus?

    PubMed

    Oelofsen, M J; Van der Ryst, E

    1999-03-01

    The inter-epizootic reservoir host of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) remains unknown, although the namaqua rock rat, Aethomys namaquensis, as well as bats have been implicated. Bats can be asymptomatically infected with rabies, as well as several arboviruses; the possibility that they can act as host for RVFV therefore exists. To examine this possibility, 350 different samples (brain, liver, salivary glands and brown fat) obtained from 150 bats (comprising seven species) were tested for RVFV antigen using an enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). None of the samples tested positive, but the ELISA proved to have limited sensitivity (> or = 10(3) TCID50/ml). In order to determine whether bats could be infected with RVFV, one Miniopterus schreibersii and two Eptesicus capensis bats were inoculated by the oral or intramuscular route with 100 ml and 30 ml, respectively, of a RVFV suspension with a titre of 10(6) TCID50/ml. None of the bats developed any clinical signs. A low concentration of RVFV antigen was found in the liver and urine of M. schreibersii, but not in brain tissue. A third E. capensis bat was inoculated by the intramuscular route and sacrificed on day 18. A low level of antigen was detected in the brown fat. These results demonstrate that bats can be infected with RVFV, and that further studies should be done to determine the potential of different bat species to act as reservoir hosts for RVFV during inter-epizootic periods. PMID:10396763

  11. Bovine trypanosomosis and Glossina distribution in selected areas of southern part of Rift Valley, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Sheferaw, Desie; Birhanu, Belay; Asrade, Biruhtesfa; Abera, Mesele; Tusse, Turist; Fikadu, Amha; Denbarga, Yifat; Gona, Zemedkun; Regassa, Alemayehu; Moje, Nebyou; Kussito, Engida; Mekibib, Berhanu; Asefa, Teshome; Woldesenbet, Zerihun

    2016-02-01

    Cross-sectional study was conducted in 9 selected districts of the southern part the Rift Valley, Ethiopia to estimate the dry period prevalence of bovine trypanosomosis as well as assessment of Glossina species. From a total of 1838 cattle examined for trypanosomosis by buffy coat technique 133 (7.2%) were found infected by trypanosome species. From the total positive animals 66.9 and 33.1% of them accounted to Trypanosoma congolense and Trypanosoma vivax, respectively. Significantly higher prevalence (19.4%., P<0.05) was recorded at Arba-Mnch district. Black colored cattle were the most highly affected (χ(2)=79.35, P<0.05) animals. The overall average PCV value for parasitaemic and aparasitaemic animals was 22.2 (95% CI=21.6-22.7) and 27% (95% CI=26.8-27.2), respectively. The fly caught per trap per day was 1.4 for Glossina species and 2.8 for other biting flies. Two species of Glossina identified namely Glossina pallidipes and Glossina fuscipes.

  12. An Investigation of a Major Outbreak of Rift Valley Fever in Kenya: 2006–2007

    PubMed Central

    Nguku, Patrick M.; Sharif, S. K.; Mutonga, David; Amwayi, Samuel; Omolo, Jared; Mohammed, Omar; Farnon, Eileen C.; Gould, L. Hannah; Lederman, Edith; Rao, Carol; Sang, Rosemary; Schnabel, David; Feikin, Daniel R.; Hightower, Allen; Njenga, M. Kariuki; Breiman, Robert F.

    2010-01-01

    An outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) occurred in Kenya during November 2006 through March 2007. We characterized the magnitude of the outbreak through disease surveillance and serosurveys, and investigated contributing factors to enhance strategies for forecasting to prevent or minimize the impact of future outbreaks. Of 700 suspected cases, 392 met probable or confirmed case definitions; demographic data were available for 340 (87%), including 90 (26.4%) deaths. Male cases were more likely to die than females, Case Fatality Rate Ratio 1.8 (95% Confidence Interval [CI] 1.3–3.8). Serosurveys suggested an attack rate up to 13% of residents in heavily affected areas. Genetic sequencing showed high homology among viruses from this and earlier RVF outbreaks. Case areas were more likely than non-case areas to have soil types that retain surface moisture. The outbreak had a devastatingly high case-fatality rate for hospitalized patients. However, there were up to 180,000 infected mildly ill or asymptomatic people within highly affected areas. Soil type data may add specificity to climate-based forecasting models for RVF. PMID:20682900

  13. Vector competence of Kenyan Culex zombaensis and Culex quinquefasciatus mosquitoes for Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Turell, M J; Lee, J S; Richardson, J H; Sang, R C; Kioko, E N; Agawo, M O; Pecor, J; O'Guinn, M L

    2007-12-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) continues to be a significant problem in Kenya as well as in Egypt, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia. In order to determine the ability of Kenyan mosquitoes to transmit RVF virus (RVFV), we collected mosquitoes in the Lake Naivasha region of Kenya and evaluated them for their potential to transmit RVFV under laboratory conditions. After feeding on a hamster (Mesocricetus auratus) with a viremia of 10(9.7) plaque-forming units of virus/ml of blood, Culex zombaensis were highly susceptible to infection with RVFV, with 89% becoming infected. In contrast, Cx. quinquefasciatus that were fed on the same hamsters were marginally susceptible, with only 20% becoming infected. Differences in percentages of mosquitoes that developed a disseminated infection were equally disparate, with 55% and 8%, for Cx. zombaensis and Cx. quinquefasciatus, respectively. Forty-eight percent of the Cx. zombaensis with a disseminated infection that fed on a susceptible hamster transmitted virus by bite, indicating a moderate salivary gland barrier. However, the presence of a salivary gland barrier could not be determined for Cx. quinquefasciatus because none of the 18 mosquitoes that took a 2nd blood meal had a disseminated infection. These studies illustrate the need to identify the ability of individual mosquito species to transmit RVFV so that correct decisions can be made concerning the application of appropriate control measures during an outbreak.

  14. Impact of rainfall variability on land cover changes in the Ethiopian Rift Valley escarpments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Annys, Sofie; Demissie, Biadgilgn; Lanckriet, Sil; Zenebe, Amanuel; Nyssen, Jan

    2016-04-01

    Magnitudes of land cover changes nowadays can be assessed properly, but their driving forces are subject to many discussions. Next to the accepted role of human influence, the impact of natural climate variability is often neglected. In this study, the impact of rainfall variability on land cover changes (LCC) is investigated for the western escarpment of the Raya graben along the northern Ethiopian Rift Valley. First, LCC between 2000 and 2014 were analysed using Landsat imagery. Based on the obtained LCC maps, the link was set with rainfall variability, obtained by means of the satellite-derived Rainfall Estimates (RFEs) from NOAA-CPC. After a correction by the incorporation of local meteorological station data, these estimates prove to be good estimators for the actual amount of precipitation. By performing several bivariate correlation analyses, a significant positive relationship between the precipitation parameter DIFF 5Y (i.e. the at-RFE pixel scale difference in five-year average annual precipitation for the two periods preceding the land cover maps) and the changes in the woody vegetation cover was found (ρ = 0.23, p = 0.02, n = 108). Despite the dominance of direct human impact, further regreening of the study area can be expected for the future concomitantly to a wetter climate, if all other factors remain constant.

  15. Interplay between the Virus and Host in Rift Valley Fever Pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Terasaki, Kaori; Makino, Shinji

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) belongs to the genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae, and carries single-stranded tripartite RNA segments. The virus is transmitted by mosquitoes and has caused large outbreaks among ruminants and humans in sub-Saharan African and Middle East countries. The disease is characterized by a sudden onset of fever, headache, muscle pain, joint pain, photophobia, and weakness. In most cases, patients recover from the disease after a period of weeks, but some also develop retinal or macular changes, which result in vision impairment that lasts for an undefined period of time, and severe disease, characterized by hemorrhagic fever or encephalitis. The virus also causes febrile illness resulting in a high rate of spontaneous abortions in ruminants. The handling of wild-type RVFV requires high-containment facilities, including biosafety level 4 or enhanced biosafety level 3 laboratories. Nonetheless, studies clarifying the mechanisms of the RVFV-induced diseases and preventing them are areas of active research throughout the world. By primarily referring to recent studies using several animal model systems, protein expression systems, and specific mutant viruses, this review describes the current knowledge about the mechanisms of pathogenesis of RVF and biological functions of various viral proteins that affect RVFV pathogenicity. PMID:25766761

  16. An investigation of a major outbreak of Rift Valley fever in Kenya: 2006-2007.

    PubMed

    Nguku, Patrick M; Sharif, S K; Mutonga, David; Amwayi, Samuel; Omolo, Jared; Mohammed, Omar; Farnon, Eileen C; Gould, L Hannah; Lederman, Edith; Rao, Carol; Sang, Rosemary; Schnabel, David; Feikin, Daniel R; Hightower, Allen; Njenga, M Kariuki; Breiman, Robert F

    2010-08-01

    An outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) occurred in Kenya during November 2006 through March 2007. We characterized the magnitude of the outbreak through disease surveillance and serosurveys, and investigated contributing factors to enhance strategies for forecasting to prevent or minimize the impact of future outbreaks. Of 700 suspected cases, 392 met probable or confirmed case definitions; demographic data were available for 340 (87%), including 90 (26.4%) deaths. Male cases were more likely to die than females, Case Fatality Rate Ratio 1.8 (95% Confidence Interval [CI] 1.3-3.8). Serosurveys suggested an attack rate up to 13% of residents in heavily affected areas. Genetic sequencing showed high homology among viruses from this and earlier RVF outbreaks. Case areas were more likely than non-case areas to have soil types that retain surface moisture. The outbreak had a devastatingly high case-fatality rate for hospitalized patients. However, there were up to 180,000 infected mildly ill or asymptomatic people within highly affected areas. Soil type data may add specificity to climate-based forecasting models for RVF.

  17. Potential for mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) from Florida to transmit Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Turell, Michael J; Britch, Seth C; Aldridge, Robert L; Kline, Daniel L; Boohene, Carl; Linthicum, Kenneth J

    2013-09-01

    We evaluated Aedes atlanticus Dyar and Knab, Aedes infirmatus Dyar and Knab, Aedes vexans (Meigen), Anopheles crucians Wiedemann, Coquillettidia perturbans (Walker), Culex nigripalpus Theobald, Mansonia dyari Belkin, Heinemann, and Page, and Psorophora ferox (Von Humboldt) from Florida to determine which of these species should be targeted for control should Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) be detected in North America. Female mosquitoes that had fed on adult hamsters inoculated with RVFV were incubated for 7-21 d at 26 degrees C, then allowed to refeed on susceptible hamsters, and tested to determine infection, dissemination, and transmission rates. We also inoculated mosquitoes intrathoracically, held them for 7 d, and then allowed them to feed on a susceptible hamster to check for a salivary gland barrier. When exposed to hamsters with viremias > or = 10(7.6) plaque-forming units per milliliter of blood, at least some individuals in each of the species tested became infected; however, Cx. nigripalpus, An. crucians, and Ae. infirmatus were essentially incompetent vectors in the laboratory because of either a midgut escape or salivary gland barrier. Each of the other species should be considered as potential vectors and would need to be controlled if RVFV were introduced into an area where they were found. Additional studies need to be conducted with other geographic populations of these species and to determine how environmental factors affect transmission.

  18. Potential for Psorophora columbiae and Psorophora ciliata Mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) to Transmit Rift Valley Fever Virus.

    PubMed

    Turell, Michael J; Britch, Seth C; Aldridge, Robert L; Xue, Rui-De; Smith, Mike L; Cohnstaedt, Lee W; Linthicum, Kenneth J

    2015-09-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) continues to pose a threat to much of the world. Unlike many arboviruses, numerous mosquito species have been associated with RVFV in nature, and many species have been demonstrated as competent vectors in the laboratory. In this study, we evaluated two field-collected Psorophora species, Psorophora columbiae (Dyar and Knab) and Psorophora ciliata (F.) for their potential to transmit RVFV in North America. Both species were susceptible to infection after feeding on a hamster with a viremia of 10(7) plaque-forming units/ml, with infection rates of 65 and 83% for Ps. columbiae and Ps. ciliata, respectively (with nearly all specimens becoming infected when feeding on a hamster with a higher viremia). However, both species had a significant salivary gland barrier, as only 2/35 Ps. columbiae and 0/3 Ps. ciliata with a disseminated infection transmitted virus by bite. Despite the presence of the salivary gland barrier, due to the very high population that can occur and its propensity to feed on large mammals, Ps. columbiae might play a role in amplifying RVFV should that virus be introduced into an area where this species is common.

  19. Understanding Rift Valley fever: contributions of animal models to disease characterization and control.

    PubMed

    Lorenzo, Gema; López-Gil, Elena; Warimwe, George M; Brun, Alejandro

    2015-07-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis with devastating health impacts in domestic ruminants and humans. Effective vaccines and accurate disease diagnostic tools are key components in the control of RVF. Animal models reproducing infection with RVF virus are of upmost importance in the development of these disease control tools. Rodent infection models are currently used in the initial steps of vaccine development and for the study of virus induced pathology. Translation of data obtained in these animal models to target species (ruminants and humans) is highly desirable but does not always occur. Small ruminants and non-human primates have been used for pathogenesis and transmission studies, and for testing the efficacy of vaccines and therapeutic antiviral compounds. However, the molecular mechanisms of the immune response elicited by RVF virus infection or vaccination are still poorly understood. The paucity of data in this area offers opportunities for new research activities and programs. This review summarizes our current understanding with respect to immunity and pathogenesis of RVF in animal models with a particular emphasis on small ruminants and non-human primates, including recent experimental infection data in sheep.

  20. Seroprevalence of antibodies against Chikungunya, Dengue, and Rift Valley fever viruses after febrile illness outbreak, Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Schwarz, Norbert G; Girmann, Mirko; Randriamampionona, Njary; Bialonski, Alexandra; Maus, Deborah; Krefis, Anne Caroline; Njarasoa, Christine; Rajanalison, Jeanne Fleury; Ramandrisoa, Herly Daniel; Randriarison, Maurice Lucien; May, Jürgen; Schmidt-Chanasit, Jonas; Rakotozandrindrainy, Raphael

    2012-11-01

    In October 2009, two-3 months after an outbreak of a febrile disease with joint pain on the eastern coast of Madagascar, we assessed serologic markers for chikungunya virus (CHIKV), dengue virus (DENV), and Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in 1,244 pregnant women at 6 locations. In 2 eastern coast towns, IgG seroprevalence against CHIKV was 45% and 23%; IgM seroprevalence was 28% and 5%. IgG seroprevalence against DENV was 17% and 11%. No anti-DENV IgM was detected. At 4 locations, 450-1,300 m high, IgG seroprevalence against CHIKV was 0%-3%, suggesting CHIKV had not spread to higher inland-altitudes. Four women had IgG against RVFV, probably antibodies from a 2008 epidemic. Most (78%) women from coastal locations with CHIKV-specific IgG reported joint pain and stiffness; 21% reported no symptoms. CHIKV infection was significantly associated with high bodyweight. The outbreak was an isolated CHIKV epidemic without relevant DENV co-transmission.

  1. Mutational Analysis of the Rift Valley Fever Virus Glycoprotein Precursor Proteins for Gn Protein Expression

    PubMed Central

    Phoenix, Inaia; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Nishiyama, Shoko; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2016-01-01

    The Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) M-segment encodes the 78 kD, NSm, Gn, and Gc proteins. The 1st AUG generates the 78 kD-Gc precursor, the 2nd AUG generates the NSm-Gn-Gc precursor, and the 3rd AUG makes the NSm’-Gn-Gc precursor. To understand biological changes due to abolishment of the precursors, we quantitatively measured Gn secretion using a reporter assay, in which a Gaussia luciferase (gLuc) protein is fused to the RVFV M-segment pre-Gn region. Using the reporter assay, the relative expression of Gn/gLuc fusion proteins was analyzed among various AUG mutants. The reporter assay showed efficient secretion of Gn/gLuc protein from the precursor made from the 2nd AUG, while the removal of the untranslated region upstream of the 2nd AUG (AUG2-M) increased the secretion of the Gn/gLuc protein. Subsequently, recombinant MP-12 strains encoding mutations in the pre-Gn region were rescued, and virological phenotypes were characterized. Recombinant MP-12 encoding the AUG2-M mutation replicated slightly less efficiently than the control, indicating that viral replication is further influenced by the biological processes occurring after Gn expression, rather than the Gn abundance. This study showed that, not only the abolishment of AUG, but also the truncation of viral UTR, affects the expression of Gn protein by the RVFV M-segment. PMID:27231931

  2. Numerical modelling of quaternary deformation and post-rifting displacement in the Asal-Ghoubbet rift (Djibouti, Africa) [rapid communication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cattin, Rodolphe; Doubre, Cécile; de Chabalier, Jean-Bernard; King, Geoffrey; Vigny, Christophe; Avouac, Jean-Philippe; Ruegg, Jean-Claude

    2005-11-01

    Over the last three decades a host of information on rifting process relating to the geological and thermal structure, long-time scale deformation (Quaternary and Holocene) and rifting cycle displacement across the Asal-Ghoubbet rift has been made available. These data are interpreted with a two-dimensional thermo-mechanical model that incorporates rheological layering of the lithosphere, dyke inflation and faulting. Active fault locations and geometry are mainly controlled by both thermal structure and magma intrusion into the crust. The distributed slip throughout the inner rift is related to the closeness of magma chamber, leading to additional stress into the upper thinned crust. Assuming a constant Arabia-Somalia motion of 11 mm/year, the variation of subsidence rate between the last 100 and 9 ka is associated with a decrease of the average injection rate from 10 to 5 mm/year. These values, about equal to the regional opening rate, suggest that both volcanism and tectonic play an equivalent role in the rifting process. Our modelled sequence of events gives one possible explanation for both vertical and horizontal displacements observed since the 1978 seismovolcanic crisis. Although part of the post-rifting deformation could be due to viscous relaxation, the high opening rate in the first years after the event and the abrupt velocity change in 1984-1986 argue for a large dyke inflation of 12 cm/year ending in 1985. The asymmetric and constant pattern of the GPS velocity since 1991 suggests that present post-rifting deformation is mainly controlled by fault creep and regional stretching. This study demonstrates the internal consistency of the data set, highlights the role of magmatism in the mechanics of crustal stretching and reveals a complex post-rifting process including magma injection, fault creep and regional stretching.

  3. Chronostratigraphy of the Miocene-Pliocene Sagantole Formation, Middle Awash Valley, Afar rift, Ethiopia

    SciTech Connect

    Renne, P.R. |; WoldeGabriel, G.; Heiken, G.; Hart, W.K.; White, T.D.

    1999-06-01

    The Sagantole Formation comprises more than 200 m of lacustrine, alluvial, and volcaniclastic sediments, plus compositionally bimodal tephras and basaltic lavas, exposed in a domelike horst named the Central Awash Complex in the southwestern Afar rift of Ethiopia. The Sagantole Formation is widely known for abundant vertebrate faunas, including the 4.4 Ma primitive hominid Ardipithecus ramidus. New lithostratigraphic data are used to subdivide the Sagantole Formation into the Kuseralee, Gawto, Haradaso, Aramis, Beidareem, Adgantole, and Belohdelie Members, in ascending order. The members are defined on the basis of lithologic differences and laterally continuous bounding tephras. {sup 40}Ar/{sup 39}Ar dating of 12 intercalated volcanic units firmly establishes the age of the Sagantole Formation to be 5.6 to 3.9 Ma, significantly older than previous proposals based on erroneous correlations. Magnetostratigraphic data reveal eight paleomagnetic polarity zones, which can be correlated unambiguously with the Thvera, Sidufjall, Nunivak, and Cochiti Subchrons of the Gilbert Chron. Thus, by reference to the geomagnetic polarity time scale, seven additional chronological datums can be placed in the Sagantole Formation. With a total of 19 such datums, the age resolution anywhere in the Sagantole Formation is better than {+-}100 k.y., making this the best-dated Miocene-Pliocene succession in Africa.

  4. Recent Flexural Slip and Rift-Branch Propagation Into the Bushveld Complex, South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haschke, M. R.; Jacobson, L.; van der Westhuizen, W.; Steenekamp, J.

    2008-12-01

    . Some neotectonic activity and seismicity in cratonic shield areas may be attributed to (1) thermal, density or isostatic intracratonic equilibration, (2) rheologic relaxation, (3) variations in lithospheric thickness, (4) resistance of stable cratonic, unbroken lithosphere to relative plate rotation, (5) intra-plate shortening and thrusting, and (5) rift-propagation from the southward propagating East African Rift with stress concentration ahead of a crack tip. However, intraplate shortening is inconsistent with the centripetal dips of the thrust surfaces in the Bushveld Complex and the recent extensional stress field documented for southern Africa. Alternatively, rift- propagation and extensional stress concentration in a rift branch in sub-Bushveld lithosphere would generate north-south trending normal faults and incipient graben structures. These structures would allow subsidence of the overlying layered Bushveld complex and explain recent flexural slip among some of the layers. Interestingly, northwest and northeast-trending graben structures and related extensional fault sets, as well as recent seismicity are documented in the Bushveld Complex, and they are more abundant and widespread than previously assumed and expected from stable cratonic shields. Both seismicity and neotectonic structures like the new Bushveld thrust pose a major hazard to the structural integrity of nearby dams, hydro, thermal and nuclear power plants, ongoing mining activity and high-level radioactive waste disposal sites in southern Africa.

  5. Molecular genetic analyses of historical lake sediments from the East African Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Epp, L. S.; Stoof, K.; Trauth, M. H.; Tiedemann, R.

    2009-04-01

    Ancient DNA research, especially that of environmental samples, has to date focussed mainly on samples obtained from colder regions, owing to better DNA preservation. We explored the potential of using ancient DNA from sediments and sediment cores of shallow lakes in Kenya. These lakes, located in the eastern branch of the East African Rift Valley, are in close proximity, yet display strikingly different hydrological and geological features. Present day lakes range in alkalinity from pH 11 (Lake Elmenteita) to pH 8 (Lake Naivasha), and in depth from less than one meter to 15 meters. Historically they have undergone a number of drastic changes in lake level and environmental conditions, both on geological timescales and during the last centuries. Within this setting we employed molecular genetic methods to study DNA from recent and historic lake sediments, focussing on rotifers and diatoms. We analyzed population and species succession in the alkaline-saline crater lake Sonachi since the beginning of the 19th century, as well as distributions in recent and historic sediments of other lakes of the East African Rift System. To specifically detect diatoms, we developed a protocol using taxon-specific polymerase chain reactions and separation of products by denaturing high performance liquid chromatography (DHPLC). Employing this protocol we retrieved "ancient" DNA from a number of taxonomically diverse organisms, but found diatoms only in sediments younger than approximately 90 years. Using higly specific reactions for rotifers of the genus Brachionus, we tracked species and population succession in Lake Sonachi during the last 200 years. Populations were dominated by a single mitochondrial haplotype for a period of 150 years, and two putatively intraspecific turnovers in dominance occurred. They were both correlated to major environmental changes documented by profound visible changes in sediment composition of the core: the deposition of a volcanic ash and a

  6. The Late Oligocene to Early Miocene early evolution of rifting in the southwestern part of the Roer Valley Graben

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deckers, Jef

    2016-06-01

    The Roer Valley Graben is a Mesozoic continental rift basin that was reactivated during the Late Oligocene. The study area is located in the graben area of the southwestern part of the Roer Valley Graben. Rifting initiated in the study area with the development of a large number of faults in the prerift strata. Some of these faults were rooted in preexisting zones of weakness in the Mesozoic strata. Early in the Late Oligocene, several faults died out in the study area as strain became focused upon others, some of which were able to link into several-kilometer-long systems. Within the Late Oligocene to Early Miocene northwestward prograding shallow marine syn-rift deposits, the number of active faults further decreased with time. A relatively strong decrease was observed around the Oligocene/Miocene boundary and represents a further focus of strain onto the long fault systems. Miocene extensional strain was not accommodated by further growth, but predominantly by displacements along the long fault systems. Since the Oligocene/Miocene boundary coincides with a radical change in the European intraplate stress field, the latter might have contributed significantly to the simultaneous change of fault kinematics in the study area.

  7. Complete genome analysis of 33 ecologically and biologically diverse Rift Valley fever virus strains reveals widespread virus movement and low genetic diversity due to recent common ancestry.

    PubMed

    Bird, Brian H; Khristova, Marina L; Rollin, Pierre E; Ksiazek, Thomas G; Nichol, Stuart T

    2007-03-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is a mosquito-borne RNA virus responsible for large explosive outbreaks of acute febrile disease in humans and livestock in Africa with significant mortality and economic impact. The successful high-throughput generation of the complete genome sequence was achieved for 33 diverse RVF virus strains collected from throughout Africa and Saudi Arabia from 1944 to 2000, including strains differing in pathogenicity in disease models. While several distinct virus genetic lineages were determined, which approximately correlate with geographic origin, multiple exceptions indicative of long-distance virus movement have been found. Virus strains isolated within an epidemic (e.g., Mauritania, 1987, or Egypt, 1977 to 1978) exhibit little diversity, while those in enzootic settings (e.g., 1970s Zimbabwe) can be highly diverse. In addition, the large Saudi Arabian RVF outbreak in 2000 appears to have involved virus introduction from East Africa, based on the close ancestral relationship of a 1998 East African virus. Virus genetic diversity was low (approximately 5%) and primarily involved accumulation of mutations at an average of 2.9 x 10(-4) substitutions/site/year, although some evidence of RNA segment reassortment was found. Bayesian analysis of current RVF virus genetic diversity places the most recent common ancestor of these viruses in the late 1800s, the colonial period in Africa, a time of dramatic changes in agricultural practices and introduction of nonindigenous livestock breeds. In addition to insights into the evolution and ecology of RVF virus, these genomic data also provide a foundation for the design of molecular detection assays and prototype vaccines useful in combating this important disease.

  8. Ethiopian Central Rift Valley basin hydrologic modelling using HEC-HMS and ArcSWAT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascual-Ferrer, Jordi; Candela, Lucila; Pérez-Foguet, Agustí

    2013-04-01

    An Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) shall be applied to achieve a sustainable development, to increase population incomes without affecting lives of those who are highly dependent on the environment. First step should be to understand water dynamics at basin level, starting by modeling the basin water resources. For model implementation, a large number of data and parameters are required, but those are not always available, especially in some developing countries where different sources may have different data, there is lack of information on data collection, etc. The Ethiopian Central Rift Valley (CRV) is an endorheic basin covering an area of approximately 10,000 km2. For the period 1996-2005, the average annual volume of rainfall accounted for 9.1 Mm3, and evapotranspiration for 8 Mm3 (Jansen et al., 2007). From the environmental point of view, basin ecosystems are endangered due to human activities. Also, poverty is widespread all over the basin, with population mainly living from agriculture on a subsistence economy. Hence, there is an urgent need to set an IWRM, but datasets required for water dynamics simulation are not too reliable. In order to reduce uncertainty of numerical simulation, two semi-distributed open software hydrologic models were implemented: HEC-HMS and ArcSWAT. HEC-HMS was developed by the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACoE) Hydrologic Engineering Center (HEC) to run precipitation-runoff simulations for a variety of applications in dendritic watershed systems. ArcSWAT includes the SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool, Arnold et al., 1998) model developed for the USDA Agricultural Research Service into ArcGIS (ESRI®). SWAT was developed to assess the impact of land management practices on large complex watersheds with varying soils, land use and management conditions over long periods of time (Neitsch et al., 2005). According to this, ArcSWAT would be the best option for IWRM implementation in the basin. However

  9. Safety and Efficacy Profile of Commercial Veterinary Vaccines against Rift Valley Fever: A Review Study

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is an infectious illness with serious clinical manifestations and health consequences in humans as well as a wide range of domestic ruminants. This review provides significant information about the prevention options of RVF along with the safety-efficacy profile of commercial vaccines and some of RVF vaccination strategies. Information presented in this paper was obtained through a systematic investigation of published data about RVF vaccines. Like other viral diseases, the prevention of RVF relies heavily on immunization of susceptible herds with safe and cost-effective vaccine that is able to confer long-term protective immunity. Several strains of RVF vaccines have been developed and are available in commercial production including Formalin-Inactivated vaccine, live attenuated Smithburn vaccine, and the most recent Clone13. Although Formalin-Inactivated vaccine and live attenuated Smithburn vaccine are immunogenic and widely used in prevention programs, they proved to be accompanied by significant concerns. Despite Clone13 vaccine being suggested as safe in pregnant ewes and as highly immunogenic along with its potential for differentiating infected from vaccinated animals (DIVA), a recent study raised concerns about the safety of the vaccine during the first trimester of gestation. Accordingly, RVF vaccines that are currently available in the market to a significant extent do not fulfill the requirements of safety, potency, and DIVA. These adverse effects stressed the need for developing new vaccines with an excellent safety profile to bridge the gap in safety and immunity. Bringing RVF vaccine candidates to local markets besides the absence of validated serological test for DIVA remain the major challenges of RVF control. PMID:27689098

  10. Rainwater harvesting for small-scale irrigation of maize in the Central Rift Valley, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keesstra, Saskia; Hartog, Maaike; Muluneh, Alemayehu; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2013-04-01

    In the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia, small scale farmers mostly rely on rainfall for crop production. The erratic nature of rainfall causes frequent crop failures and makes the region structurally dependent on food aid. Rainwater Harvesting (RWH) is a technique to collect and store runoff that could provide water for livestock, domestic use or small scale irrigation. Usually, such irrigation is promoted for high value crops, but in the light of regional food security it may become interesting to invest in irrigation of maize. In this research, two cemented RWH cisterns were investigated to determine their economic and social potential for supplemental irrigation of maize using drip irrigation. For this, data from test fields with irrigated maize and monitoring of water levels of the cisterns were used, as well as a survey under 30 farmers living close to the experimental site. The results show that catchment size and management should be in balance with the designed RWH system, to prevent too little runoff or flooding. An analysis with Cropwat 8.0 was used to investigate the possibility of irrigating maize with the observed amounts of water in the RWH cisterns. This would suffice for 0.3-0.8 ha of maize. For a RWH cistern with a drip irrigation system to be economically viable, the production on this acreage should become 3-4 ton/ha; 2.5 times higher than the current yield. But the biggest challenge would be to change the perception of respondents, who don't find it logical to spend precious water on a common crop like maize. Therefore, if the Ethiopian government considers the irrigation of maize to be important for regional food security, it is recommended to either subsidize the construction of RWH cisterns or provide credit on favourable terms.

  11. The role of wild mammals in the maintenance of Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Olive, Marie-Marie; Goodman, Steven M; Reynes, Jean-Marc

    2012-04-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a zoonotic arbovirus affecting primarily domestic ruminants and humans. Numerous vector species are known or implicated in the transmission of RVFV. The role of mammals in the maintenance of RVFV, and the existence of a wild mammal reservoir in the epidemiologic cycle of RVFV, remain largely unknown. Our objective is to present a detailed review of studies undertaken on RVFV, often associated with wild mammals, with the aim of focusing future research on potential reservoirs of the virus. Natural and experimental infections related to RVFV in several mammalian orders, including Artiodactyla, Chiroptera, Rodentia, Primata (nonhuman), Perissodactyla, Carnivora, Proboscidea, Erinaceomorpha, and Lagomorpha, are reviewed; the first four orders have received the greatest attention. The possible role of wild ruminants, especially African buffalo (Syncerus caffer), is also discussed. Conflicting results have been published concerning rodents but, based on the literature, the likely candidate species include the African genera Arvicanthis and Micaelamys and the widely introduced roof rat (Rattus rattus). Members of the orders Chiroptera and Rodentia should receive greater attention associated with new research programs. For the other orders mentioned above, few data are available. We are unaware of any investigation concerning the orders Afrosoricida and Soricomorpha, which are represented in the geographic area of RVFV and can be abundant. As a first step to resolve the question of wild mammals as a reservoir of RVFV, serologic and virologic surveys should be promoted during epizootic periods to document infected wild animals and, in the case of positive results, extended to interepidemic periods to explore the role of wild animals as possible reservoirs.

  12. Remote Sensing in a Changing Climate and Environment: the Rift Valley Fever Case

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tourre, Y. M.; Lacaux, J.-P.; Vignolles, C.; Lafaye, M.

    2012-07-01

    Climate and environment are changing rapidly whilst global population already reached 7 billions people. New public health challenges are posed by new and re-emerging diseases. Innovation is a must i.e., 1) using high resolution remote sensing, 2) re-invent health politics and trans-disciplinary management. The above are part of the 'TransCube Approach' i.e., Transition, Translation, and Transformation. The new concept of Tele-epidemiology includes such approach. A conceptual approach (CA) associated with Rift Valley Fever (RVF) epidemics in Senegal is presented. Ponds are detected using high-resolution SPOT-5 satellite images and radar data from space. Data on rainfall events obtained from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (NASA/JAXA) are combined with in-situ data. Localization of vulnerable and parked hosts (obtained from QuickBird satellite) is also used. The dynamic spatio-temporal distribution and aggressiveness of RVF mosquitoes, are based on total rainfall amounts, ponds' dynamics and entomological observations. Detailed risks maps (hazards + vulnerability) in real-time are expressed in percentages of parks where animals are potentially at risks. This CA which simply relies upon rainfall distribution from space, is meant to contribute to the implementation of the RVF early warning system (RVFews). It is meant to be applied to other diseases and elsewhere. This is particularly true in new places where new vectors have been rapidly adapting (such as Aedes albopictus) whilst viruses (such as West Nile and Chikungunya,) circulate from constantly moving reservoirs and increasing population.

  13. Generation of a Single-Cycle Replicable Rift Valley Fever Vaccine.

    PubMed

    Murakami, Shin; Terasaki, Kaori; Makino, Shinji

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) (genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae) is an arbovirus that causes severe disease in humans and livestock in sub-Saharan African countries. The virus carries a tripartite, single-stranded, and negative-sense RNA genome, designated as L, M, and S RNAs. RVFV spread can be prevented by the effective vaccination of animals and humans. Although the MP-12 strain of RVFV is a live attenuated vaccine candidate, MP-12 showed neuroinvasiveness and neurovirulence in young mice and immunodeficiency mice. Hence, there is a concern for the use of MP-12 to certain individuals, especially those that are immunocompromised. To improve MP-12 safety, we have generated a single-cycle, replicable MP-12 (scMP-12), which carries L RNA, S RNA encoding green fluorescent protein in place of a viral nonstructural protein NSs, and an M RNA encoding a mutant envelope protein lacking an endoplasmic reticulum retrieval signal and defective for membrane fusion function. The scMP-12 undergoes efficient amplification in the Vero-G cell line, which is a Vero cell line stably expressing viral envelope proteins, while it undergoes single-cycle replication in naïve cells and completely lacks neurovirulence in suckling mice after intracranial inoculation. A single-dose vaccination of mice with scMP-12 confers protective immunity. Thus, scMP-12 represents a new, promising RVF vaccine candidate. Here we describe protocols for scMP-12 generation by using a reverse genetics system, establishment of Vero-G cells, and titration of scMP-12 in Vero-G cells.

  14. Origin of platy calcite crystals in hot-spring deposits in the Kenya Rift Valley

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, B.; Renault, R.W.

    1998-09-01

    Platy calcite crystals, which have their c axis parallel to their shortest length axis, are common components of travertine deposits found around some hot springs in the Kenya Rift Valley. They are composite crystals formed of numerous paper-thin subcrystals. Individual plates allowed to grow without obstruction develop a hexagonal motif. The Kenyan crystals typically form in hot (>75 C) waters that have a low Ca content (<10 mg/l), a high CO{sub 2} content, and a high rate of CO{sub 2} degassing. At Chemurkeu, aggregates of numerous small platy crystals collectively form lattice crystals that superficially resemble ray crystals. The walls of the lattice crystals are formed of large platy crystals that have their long and intermediate length axes aligned parallel to the plane of the long axis of the lattice crystal. Internally, the lattice crystals are formed of small platy calcite crystals arranged in a boxlike pattern that creates the appearance of a lattice when viewed in thin section. Lattice crystals are highly porous, with each pore being enclosed by platy crystals. At Lorusio, travertines are mainly formed of pseudodentrites that are constructed by numerous small platy crystals attached to a main stem which is a large platy crystal that commonly curves along its long axis. The pseudodentrites are the main construction blocks in ledges and lilypads that form in the vent pool and spring outflow channels, where the water is too hot for microbes other than hyperthermophiles. The platy calcite crystals in the Kenyan travertines are morphologically similar to platy calcite crystals that form as scale in pipes in the geothermal fields of New Zealand and hydrothermal angel wing calcite from the La Fe mine in Mexico. Comparison of the Kenyan and New Zealand crystals indicates that platy calcite crystals form from waters with a low Ca{sup 2+} content and a high CO{sub 3}/Ca ratio due to rapid rates of CO{sub 2} degassing.

  15. Single-Molecule FISH Reveals Non-selective Packaging of Rift Valley Fever Virus Genome Segments.

    PubMed

    Wichgers Schreur, Paul J; Kortekaas, Jeroen

    2016-08-01

    The bunyavirus genome comprises a small (S), medium (M), and large (L) RNA segment of negative polarity. Although genome segmentation confers evolutionary advantages by enabling genome reassortment events with related viruses, genome segmentation also complicates genome replication and packaging. Accumulating evidence suggests that genomes of viruses with eight or more genome segments are incorporated into virions by highly selective processes. Remarkably, little is known about the genome packaging process of the tri-segmented bunyaviruses. Here, we evaluated, by single-molecule RNA fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), the intracellular spatio-temporal distribution and replication kinetics of the Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) genome and determined the segment composition of mature virions. The results reveal that the RVFV genome segments start to replicate near the site of infection before spreading and replicating throughout the cytoplasm followed by translocation to the virion assembly site at the Golgi network. Despite the average intracellular S, M and L genome segments approached a 1:1:1 ratio, major differences in genome segment ratios were observed among cells. We also observed a significant amount of cells lacking evidence of M-segment replication. Analysis of two-segmented replicons and four-segmented viruses subsequently confirmed the previous notion that Golgi recruitment is mediated by the Gn glycoprotein. The absence of colocalization of the different segments in the cytoplasm and the successful rescue of a tri-segmented variant with a codon shuffled M-segment suggested that inter-segment interactions are unlikely to drive the copackaging of the different segments into a single virion. The latter was confirmed by direct visualization of RNPs inside mature virions which showed that the majority of virions lack one or more genome segments. Altogether, this study suggests that RVFV genome packaging is a non-selective process. PMID:27548280

  16. Single-Molecule FISH Reveals Non-selective Packaging of Rift Valley Fever Virus Genome Segments

    PubMed Central

    Wichgers Schreur, Paul J.; Kortekaas, Jeroen

    2016-01-01

    The bunyavirus genome comprises a small (S), medium (M), and large (L) RNA segment of negative polarity. Although genome segmentation confers evolutionary advantages by enabling genome reassortment events with related viruses, genome segmentation also complicates genome replication and packaging. Accumulating evidence suggests that genomes of viruses with eight or more genome segments are incorporated into virions by highly selective processes. Remarkably, little is known about the genome packaging process of the tri-segmented bunyaviruses. Here, we evaluated, by single-molecule RNA fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), the intracellular spatio-temporal distribution and replication kinetics of the Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) genome and determined the segment composition of mature virions. The results reveal that the RVFV genome segments start to replicate near the site of infection before spreading and replicating throughout the cytoplasm followed by translocation to the virion assembly site at the Golgi network. Despite the average intracellular S, M and L genome segments approached a 1:1:1 ratio, major differences in genome segment ratios were observed among cells. We also observed a significant amount of cells lacking evidence of M-segment replication. Analysis of two-segmented replicons and four-segmented viruses subsequently confirmed the previous notion that Golgi recruitment is mediated by the Gn glycoprotein. The absence of colocalization of the different segments in the cytoplasm and the successful rescue of a tri-segmented variant with a codon shuffled M-segment suggested that inter-segment interactions are unlikely to drive the copackaging of the different segments into a single virion. The latter was confirmed by direct visualization of RNPs inside mature virions which showed that the majority of virions lack one or more genome segments. Altogether, this study suggests that RVFV genome packaging is a non-selective process. PMID:27548280

  17. Safety and Efficacy Profile of Commercial Veterinary Vaccines against Rift Valley Fever: A Review Study

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is an infectious illness with serious clinical manifestations and health consequences in humans as well as a wide range of domestic ruminants. This review provides significant information about the prevention options of RVF along with the safety-efficacy profile of commercial vaccines and some of RVF vaccination strategies. Information presented in this paper was obtained through a systematic investigation of published data about RVF vaccines. Like other viral diseases, the prevention of RVF relies heavily on immunization of susceptible herds with safe and cost-effective vaccine that is able to confer long-term protective immunity. Several strains of RVF vaccines have been developed and are available in commercial production including Formalin-Inactivated vaccine, live attenuated Smithburn vaccine, and the most recent Clone13. Although Formalin-Inactivated vaccine and live attenuated Smithburn vaccine are immunogenic and widely used in prevention programs, they proved to be accompanied by significant concerns. Despite Clone13 vaccine being suggested as safe in pregnant ewes and as highly immunogenic along with its potential for differentiating infected from vaccinated animals (DIVA), a recent study raised concerns about the safety of the vaccine during the first trimester of gestation. Accordingly, RVF vaccines that are currently available in the market to a significant extent do not fulfill the requirements of safety, potency, and DIVA. These adverse effects stressed the need for developing new vaccines with an excellent safety profile to bridge the gap in safety and immunity. Bringing RVF vaccine candidates to local markets besides the absence of validated serological test for DIVA remain the major challenges of RVF control.

  18. Predictive Factors and Risk Mapping for Rift Valley Fever Epidemics in Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Munyua, Peninah M.; Murithi, R. Mbabu; Ithondeka, Peter; Hightower, Allen; Thumbi, Samuel M.; Anyangu, Samuel A.; Kiplimo, Jusper; Bett, Bernard; Vrieling, Anton; Breiman, Robert F.; Njenga, M. Kariuki

    2016-01-01

    Background To-date, Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks have occurred in 38 of the 69 administrative districts in Kenya. Using surveillance records collected between 1951 and 2007, we determined the risk of exposure and outcome of an RVF outbreak, examined the ecological and climatic factors associated with the outbreaks, and used these data to develop an RVF risk map for Kenya. Methods Exposure to RVF was evaluated as the proportion of the total outbreak years that each district was involved in prior epizootics, whereas risk of outcome was assessed as severity of observed disease in humans and animals for each district. A probability-impact weighted score (1 to 9) of the combined exposure and outcome risks was used to classify a district as high (score ≥ 5) or medium (score ≥2 - <5) risk, a classification that was subsequently subjected to expert group analysis for final risk level determination at the division levels (total = 391 divisions). Divisions that never reported RVF disease (score < 2) were classified as low risk. Using data from the 2006/07 RVF outbreak, the predictive risk factors for an RVF outbreak were identified. The predictive probabilities from the model were further used to develop an RVF risk map for Kenya. Results The final output was a RVF risk map that classified 101 of 391 divisions (26%) located in 21 districts as high risk, and 100 of 391 divisions (26%) located in 35 districts as medium risk and 190 divisions (48%) as low risk, including all 97 divisions in Nyanza and Western provinces. The risk of RVF was positively associated with Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), low altitude below 1000m and high precipitation in areas with solonertz, luvisols and vertisols soil types (p <0.05). Conclusion RVF risk map serves as an important tool for developing and deploying prevention and control measures against the disease. PMID:26808021

  19. Four-segmented Rift Valley fever virus induces sterile immunity in sheep after a single vaccination.

    PubMed

    Wichgers Schreur, Paul J; Kant, Jet; van Keulen, Lucien; Moormann, Rob J M; Kortekaas, Jeroen

    2015-03-17

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a mosquito-borne virus in the Bunyaviridae family, causes recurrent outbreaks with severe disease in ruminants and occasionally humans. The virus comprises a segmented genome consisting of a small (S), medium (M) and large (L) RNA segment of negative polarity. The M-segment encodes a glycoprotein precursor (GPC) protein that is co-translationally cleaved into Gn and Gc, which are required for virus entry and fusion. Recently we developed a four-segmented RVFV (RVFV-4s) by splitting the M-genome segment, and used this virus to study RVFV genome packaging. Here we evaluated the potential of a RVFV-4s variant lacking the NSs gene (4s-ΔNSs) to induce protective immunity in sheep. Groups of seven lambs were either mock-vaccinated or vaccinated with 10(5) or 10(6) tissue culture infective dose (TCID50) of 4s-ΔNSs via the intramuscular (IM) or subcutaneous (SC) route. Three weeks post-vaccination all lambs were challenged with wild-type RVFV. Mock-vaccinated lambs developed high fever and high viremia within 2 days post-challenge and three animals eventually succumbed to the infection. In contrast, none of the 4s-ΔNSs vaccinated animals developed clinical signs during the course of the experiment. Vaccination with 10(5) TCID50 via the IM route provided sterile immunity, whereas a 10(6) dose was required to induce sterile immunity via SC vaccination. Protection was strongly correlated with the presence of RVFV neutralizing antibodies. This study shows that 4s-ΔNSs is able to induce sterile immunity in the natural target species after a single vaccination, preferably administrated via the IM route.

  20. Prevalence of Rift Valley fever infection in ruminants in Madagascar after the 2008 outbreak.

    PubMed

    Jeanmaire, Elisabeth Marie; Rabenarivahiny, René; Biarmann, Marcellin; Rabibisoa, Lalao; Ravaomanana, Fleurette; Randriamparany, Tantely; Andriamandimby, Soa Fy; Diaw, Cécile Squarzoni; Fenozara, Peter; de La Rocque, Stéphane; Reynes, Jean-Marc

    2011-04-01

    A Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreak occurred in Madagascar from January to May 2008. The objectives of this study were (1) to assess the current and past circulation of RVF virus (RVFV) in livestock in Madagascar and (2) to evaluate the extent and magnitude of the 2008 RVF outbreak in livestock. The results of a country-wide serosurvey conducted in August 2008 on small and large ruminants are reported here. The study included 3437 cattle and 989 small ruminants (227 sheep and 762 goats) sampled in 30 of the 111 Malagasy districts, selected to be representative of the different ecozones and livestock density areas. Sera of animals were tested for the detection of immunoglobulins M (IgM) and G (IgG) against RVFV using commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays kits. Recent infections (presence of IgM against RVFV) were detected in only 9 cattle (0.3% [0.1-0.4]) and 33 small ruminant (3.3% [2.2-4.5]) samples. Past infections (presence of IgG and absence of IgM against RVFV) were detected in 887 cattle (25.8% [24.3-27.3]) and 244 small ruminant (24.7% [22.0-27.4]) samples. Past infections were detected in all sampled sites. All ecozones were affected. In the southern and northwestern areas, the prevalence of cattle showing evidence of past infection with RVFV increased with the age of the animals. Our results suggest that there has been country-wide circulation of RVFV in 2008 in Madagascar, including in parts of the country where no clinical illness, either in animals or in humans, was reported. The data also suggest that the southern and northwestern areas may be endemic for RVFV, and that the virus may spread when ecological conditions are favorable for its amplification.

  1. A systematic review of Rift Valley Fever epidemiology 1931–2014

    PubMed Central

    Nanyingi, Mark O.; Munyua, Peninah; Kiama, Stephen G.; Muchemi, Gerald M.; Thumbi, Samuel M.; Bitek, Austine O.; Bett, Bernard; Muriithi, Reese M.; Njenga, M. Kariuki

    2015-01-01

    Background Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis that was first isolated and characterized in 1931 in Kenya. RVF outbreaks have resulted in significant losses through human illness and deaths, high livestock abortions and deaths. This report provides an overview on epidemiology of RVF including ecology, molecular diversity spatiotemporal analysis, and predictive risk modeling. Methodology Using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines, we systematically searched for relevant RVF publications in repositories of the World Health Organization Library and Information Networks for Knowledge (WHOLIS), U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO). Detailed searches were performed in Google Scholar, SpringerLink, and PubMed databases and included conference proceedings and books published from 1931 up to 31st January 2015. Results and discussion A total of 84 studies were included in this review; majority (50%) reported on common human and animal risk factors that included consumption of animal products, contact with infected animals and residing in low altitude areas associated with favorable climatic and ecological conditions for vector emergence. A total of 14 (16%) of the publications described RVF progressive spatial and temporal distribution and the use of risk modeling for timely prediction of imminent outbreaks. Using distribution maps, we illustrated the gradual spread and geographical extent of disease; we also estimated the disease burden using aggregate human mortalities and cumulative outbreak periods for endemic regions. Conclusion This review outlines common risk factors for RVF infections over wider geographical areas; it also emphasizes the role of spatial models in predicting RVF enzootics. It, therefore, explains RVF epidemiological status that may be used for design of targeted surveillance and control programs in endemic

  2. Randomized Controlled Field Trial to Assess the Immunogenicity and Safety of Rift Valley Fever Clone 13 Vaccine in Livestock

    PubMed Central

    Njenga, M. Kariuki; Njagi, Leonard; Thumbi, S. Mwangi; Kahariri, Samuel; Githinji, Jane; Omondi, Eunice; Baden, Amy; Murithi, Mbabu; Paweska, Janusz; Ithondeka, Peter M.; Ngeiywa, Kisa J.; Dungu, Baptiste; Donadeu, Meritxell; Munyua, Peninah M.

    2015-01-01

    Background Although livestock vaccination is effective in preventing Rift Valley fever (RVF) epidemics, there are concerns about safety and effectiveness of the only commercially available RVF Smithburn vaccine. We conducted a randomized controlled field trial to evaluate the immunogenicity and safety of the new RVF Clone 13 vaccine, recently registered in South Africa. Methods In a blinded randomized controlled field trial, 404 animals (85 cattle, 168 sheep, and 151 goats) in three farms in Kenya were divided into three groups. Group A included males and non-pregnant females that were randomized and assigned to two groups; one vaccinated with RVF Clone 13 and the other given placebo. Groups B included animals in 1st half of pregnancy, and group C animals in 2nd half of pregnancy, which were also randomized and either vaccinated and given placebo. Animals were monitored for one year and virus antibodies titers assessed on days 14, 28, 56, 183 and 365. Results In vaccinated goats (N = 72), 72% developed anti-RVF virus IgM antibodies and 97% neutralizing IgG antibodies. In vaccinated sheep (N = 77), 84% developed IgM and 91% neutralizing IgG antibodies. Vaccinated cattle (N = 42) did not develop IgM antibodies but 67% developed neutralizing IgG antibodies. At day 14 post-vaccination, the odds of being seropositive for IgG in the vaccine group was 3.6 (95% CI, 1.5 – 9.2) in cattle, 90.0 (95% CI, 25.1 – 579.2) in goats, and 40.0 (95% CI, 16.5 – 110.5) in sheep. Abortion was observed in one vaccinated goat but histopathologic analysis did not indicate RVF virus infection. There was no evidence of teratogenicity in vaccinated or placebo animals. Conclusions The results suggest RVF Clone 13 vaccine is safe to use and has high (>90%) immunogenicity in sheep and goats but moderate (> 65%) immunogenicity in cattle. PMID:25756501

  3. Dicer-2- and Piwi-Mediated RNA Interference in Rift Valley Fever Virus-Infected Mosquito Cells

    PubMed Central

    Léger, P.; Lara, E.; Jagla, B.; Sismeiro, O.; Mansuroglu, Z.; Coppée, J. Y.; Bonnefoy, E.

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a Phlebovirus (Bunyaviridae family) transmitted by mosquitoes. It infects humans and ruminants, causing dramatic epidemics and epizootics in Africa, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia. While recent studies demonstrated the importance of the nonstructural protein NSs as a major component of virulence in vertebrates, little is known about infection of mosquito vectors. Here we studied RVFV infection in three different mosquito cell lines, Aag2 cells from Aedes aegypti and U4.4 and C6/36 cells from Aedes albopictus. In contrast with mammalian cells, where NSs forms nuclear filaments, U4.4 and Aag2 cells downregulated NSs expression such that NSs filaments were never formed in nuclei of U4.4 cells and disappeared at an early time postinfection in the case of Aag2 cells. On the contrary, in C6/36 cells, NSs nuclear filaments were visible during the entire time course of infection. Analysis of virus-derived small interfering RNAs (viRNAs) by deep sequencing indicated that production of viRNAs was very low in C6/36 cells, which are known to be Dicer-2 deficient but expressed some viRNAs presenting a Piwi signature. In contrast, Aag2 and U4.4 cells produced large amounts of viRNAs predominantly matching the S segment and displaying Dicer-2 and Piwi signatures. Whereas 21-nucleotide (nt) Dicer-2 viRNAs were prominent during early infection, the population of 24- to 27-nt Piwi RNAs (piRNAs) increased progressively and became predominant later during the acute infection and during persistence. In Aag2 and U4.4 cells, the combined actions of the Dicer-2 and Piwi pathways triggered an efficient antiviral response permitting, among other actions, suppression of NSs filament formation and allowing establishment of persistence. In C6/36 cells, Piwi-mediated RNA interference (RNAi) appeared to be sufficient to mount an antiviral response against a secondary infection with a superinfecting virus. This study provides new insights into the role of Dicer and Piwi

  4. High Resolution Quaternary and Neogene Reconstructions of the Southwest Indian Ridge and Rifting in Eastern Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeMets, C.; Merkuryev, S. A.; Calais, E.; Sauter, D.

    2014-12-01

    The Southwest Indian Ridge (SWIR) south of Africa is a critical link in plate circuits between the Atlantic and Indian Ocean basins and between the Nubia and Somalia plates. Detailed reconstructions of its seafloor spreading history are challenging due to the low fidelity of its magnetic anomalies, which were mostly created at slow to ultraslow spreading rates, and gaps in data coverage for some areas of the ridge. Here, we describe the first high-resolution analysis of Quaternary/Neogene SWIR plate kinematics based on nearly 5000 identifications that we made of magnetic reversals C1n (0.78 Ma) to C6no (19.7 Ma) and ~6000 crossings of 21 fracture zones and transform faults that offset the ridge. We also outline the implications for estimates of motion between the Nubia and Somalia plates since 20 Ma across rifts in eastern Africa. Searches for the Nubia-Lwandle and Lwandle-Somalia plate boundaries north of the SWIR with our new data corroborate previous evidence for respective locations near the Andrew Bain transform fault at ~30°E and at ~50°E. Inversions of the abundant new data to find best-fitting rotations at ~1 Myr intervals since 20 Ma reveal a previously unknown, ~20% deceleration of seafloor spreading rates at 7.2±1 Ma everywhere along the SWIR. Motion since 7 Ma has remained remarkably steady and agrees within uncertainties with GPS estimates that are based on more than 100 continuous GPS sites on the Nubia, Somalia, and Antarctic plates. The consistency of the geodetic and geologic estimates validates both and also supports evidence we will describe for anomalously wide outward displacement west of ~30E. Nubia-Somalia rotations determined from our new model indicate that the two plates have undergone steady relative motion since at least 19 Ma. Our new rotation for C5n.2 predicts ~70% less opening across the East Africa rift since 11 Ma than the most recently published kinematic estimate, in better accord with at least one geologically

  5. Natural resources and their prospects in the closed basins of rift valley marginal grabens in northern Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meaza, Hailemariam; Frankl, Amaury; Poesen, Jean; Zenebe, Amanuel; Deckers, Jozef; Vaneetvelde, Veerle; Lanckriet, Sil; Nyssen, Jan

    2016-04-01

    With increasing population, producing more food and fibers has led to an expansion of the area under cultivation. For this, much attention is given to low-lying flat areas in search of suitable agricultural lands. The objectives of this paper are therefore: (1) to review the opportunities and challenges of natural resources in the marginal grabens for rural development; (2) to highlight the knowledge gaps and priorities in research and development in the marginal grabens, and (3) to supplement the literature review through repeat transect walks, focus group discussions and interviews across the western rift valley of northern Ethiopia. The paper shows that marginal grabens along the rift valleys are rich both in blue and green water resources due to their topographical and geological characteristics. Spate irrigation has been a growing water management practice to respond to soil moisture deficit. Besides, marginal grabens are fertile plains as a result of alluvial deposition that could be suitable for agricultural development. However, rainfall variability and groundwater withdrawal lead to graben basin closure and salinization. Notably, riverbed incisions and sediment deposition affects drainage systems and water supply in the marginal grabens. As a result, socioeconomic and natural capital of the marginal graben farmers are continuously threatened. Thus, the benefits of natural resources for rural development in the marginal grabens along the rift valley can be optimized if the current bottlenecks are converted into opportunities. A better understanding of the complex marginal graben system via a robust land evaluation framework will improve livelihoods of the communities that live in the (closed) marginal grabens. Keywords: population pressure, marginal grabens, endorheic lakes, salinization, Ethiopia

  6. Structural controls on the spatial distribution and geochemical composition of volcanism in a continental rift zone; an example from Owens Valley, eastern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haproff, P. J.; Yin, A.

    2014-12-01

    Bimodal volcanism is common in continental rift zones. Structural controls to the emplacement and compositions of magmas, however, are not well understood. To address this issue, we examine the location, age, and geochemistry of active volcanic centers, and geometry and kinematics of rift-related faults across the active transtensional Owens Valley rift zone. Building on existing studies, we postulate that the spatial distribution and geochemical composition of volcanism are controlled by motion along rift-bounding fault systems. Along-strike variation in fault geometry and characteristics of active volcanism allow us to divide Owens Valley into three segments: southern, northern, and central. The southern segment of Owens Valley is a simple shear, asymmetric rift bounded to the west by the east-dipping Sierra Nevada frontal fault (SNFF). Active vents of Coso volcanic field are distributed along the eastern rift shoulder and characterized by the eruption of bimodal lavas. The SNFF within this segment is low-angle and penetrates through the lithosphere and into the ductile asthenosphere, allowing for mantle-derived magma to migrate across the weakest part of the fault zone beneath the eastern rift shoulder. Magma thermally weakens wall rocks and eventually stalls in the crust where the melt develops a greater felsic component prior to eruption. The northern segment of Owens Valley displays similar structural geometry, as the west-dipping White Mountains fault (WMF) is listric at depth and offsets the crust and mantle lithosphere, allowing for vertical transport of magma and reservoir emplacement within the crust. Bimodal lavas periodically erupted in the Long Valley Caldera region along the western rift shoulder. The central segment of Owens Valley is a pure shear, symmetric graben generated by motion along the SNFF and WMF. The subvertical, right-slip Owens Valley fault (OVF) strikes along the axis of the valley and penetrates through the lithosphere into the

  7. Mixing models and ionic geothermometers applied to warm (up to 60°C) springs: Jordan Rift Valley, Israel

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mazor, E.; Levitte, D.; Truesdell, A.H.; Healy, J.; Nissenbaum, A.

    1980-01-01

    No indications are available for the existence of above-boiling geothermal systems in the Jordan Rift Valley. Slightly higher than observed temperatures are concluded for a deep component at the springs of Hammat Gader (67°C), Gofra (68°C), the Russian Garden (40°C), and the Yesha well (53–65°C). These temperatures may encourage further developments for spas and bathing installations and, to a limited extent, for space heating, but are not favorable for geothermal power generation.

  8. Bridging dry spells for maize cropping through supplemental irrigation in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh Bitew, Alemayehu; Keesstra, Saskia; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2015-04-01

    Maize yield in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia (CRV) suffers from dry spells at sensitive growth stages. Risk of crop failure makes farmers reluctant to invest in fertilizer. This makes the CRV food insecure. There are farms with well-maintained terraces and Rain Water Harvesting (RWH) systems using concrete farms ponds. We tested the hypothesis that in these farms supplemental irrigation with simultaneous crop intensification might boost production of a small maize area sufficient to improve food security. Intensification includes a higher plant density of a hybrid variety under optimum fertilization. First we assessed the probability of occurrence of dry spells. Then we estimated the availability of sufficient runoff in the ponds in dry years. During 2012 (dry) and 2013 (wet) on-farm field research was conducted with 10 combinations of supplemental irrigation and plant density. The simplest was rainfed farming with 30,000 plants ha-1. The most advanced was no water stress and 75,000 plants ha-1. Finally we compared our on-farm yield with that of neighbouring farmers. Because 2013 was a wet year no irrigation was needed. Our long term daily rainfall (1970-2011) analysis proves the occurrence of dry spells during the onset of the maize (Belg months March and April). In March there is hardly enough water in the ponds. So, we advise later sowing. Starting from April available water (runoff from a 2.2 ha catchment) matches crop water requirement (for 0.5 ha maize). Significant differences between grain and total biomass yield were observed between rainfed and other irrigation levels. However, since the largest difference is only 12%, the investment in irrigation non-critical drought years is not worth the effort. There was also a limited effect (18-22%) of increasing plant density. So, we advise not to use more than 45,000 plants ha-1. The grain yield and total biomass difference between farmers own practice and our on-farm research was 101% and 84% respectively

  9. Functional Analysis of Rift Valley Fever Virus NSs Encoding a Partial Truncation

    PubMed Central

    Head, Jennifer A.; Kalveram, Birte; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2012-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), belongs to genus Phlebovirus of the family Bunyaviridae, causes high rates of abortion and fetal malformation in infected ruminants as well as causing neurological disorders, blindness, or lethal hemorrhagic fever in humans. RVFV is classified as a category A priority pathogen and a select agent in the U.S., and currently there are no therapeutics available for RVF patients. NSs protein, a major virulence factor of RVFV, inhibits host transcription including interferon (IFN)-β mRNA synthesis and promotes degradation of dsRNA-dependent protein kinase (PKR). NSs self-associates at the C-terminus 17 aa., while NSs at aa.210–230 binds to Sin3A-associated protein (SAP30) to inhibit the activation of IFN-β promoter. Thus, we hypothesize that NSs function(s) can be abolished by truncation of specific domains, and co-expression of nonfunctional NSs with intact NSs will result in the attenuation of NSs function by dominant-negative effect. Unexpectedly, we found that RVFV NSs truncated at aa. 6–30, 31–55, 56–80, 81–105, 106–130, 131–155, 156–180, 181–205, 206–230, 231–248 or 249–265 lack functions of IFN–β mRNA synthesis inhibition and degradation of PKR. Truncated NSs were less stable in infected cells, while nuclear localization was inhibited in NSs lacking either of aa.81–105, 106–130, 131–155, 156–180, 181–205, 206–230 or 231–248. Furthermore, none of truncated NSs had exhibited significant dominant-negative functions for NSs-mediated IFN-β suppression or PKR degradation upon co-expression in cells infected with RVFV. We also found that any of truncated NSs except for intact NSs does not interact with RVFV NSs even in the presence of intact C-terminus self-association domain. Our results suggest that conformational integrity of NSs is important for the stability, cellular localization and biological functions of RVFV NSs, and the co-expression of truncated NSs does not exhibit dominant

  10. Occurrence of rift valley fever in cattle in Ijara district, Kenya.

    PubMed

    Owange, Nelson O; Ogara, William O; Affognon, Hippolyte; Peter, Gathura B; Kasiiti, Jacqueline; Okuthe, Sam; Onyango-Ouma, W; Landmann, Tobias; Sang, Rosemary; Mbabu, Murithi

    2014-11-01

    Ijara district in Kenya was one of the hotspots of rift valley fever (RVF) during the 2006/2007 outbreak which led to human and animal deaths causing huge economic and public health losses. The main constraint in the control and prevention of RVF is inadequate knowledge on its occurrence during the interepidemic period. This study was aimed at understanding the occurrence of RVF in cattle in Ijara to enable the development of improved community-based disease surveillance, prediction, control and prevention. Six herds each 700-1000 cattle were identified with participatory involvement of locals and project technical team of the project. One animal per herd was tagged with global position system (GPS) collar to enable follow up. Sero-surveys were conducted periodically to understand the herd's movement through various ecological zones and risk of exposure to RVF virus. Sixty animals less than 3 years old from each herd were randomly selected each sampling time and sero-surveyed for RVF four times (September 2012, December 2012, February 2013 and May 2013) during the study period and along the nomadic movement route. The serum samples collected were subjected to RVF inhibition ELISA test to detect if there was exposure for RVF virus (RVFV). The RVF inhibition ELISA positive samples were subjected to IgM ELISA test to determine if the exposures were current or recent (within 14 days). The result of the survey indicated that 13.1% (183/1396) of cattle sero-surveyed had RVFV antibodies by inhibition ELISA test while 1.4% (18/1396) was positive for IgM ELISA test. The highest RVFV circulation was detected after herds pass through bony forest between Lamu and Ijara and Halei forested areas. These forested areas also had the highest IgM detections. The findings indicate that even limited rainfall was able to initiate RVFV circulation in Ijara region with highest circulation detected within forested areas with potential to become epidemic if rains persist with extensive

  11. Sheep skin odor improves trap captures of mosquito vectors of Rift Valley fever.

    PubMed

    Tchouassi, David P; Sang, Rosemary; Sole, Catherine L; Bastos, Armanda D S; Mithoefer, Klaus; Torto, Baldwyn

    2012-01-01

    In recent years, the East African region has seen an increase in arboviral diseases transmitted by blood-feeding arthropods. Effective surveillance to monitor and reduce incidence of these infections requires the use of appropriate vector sampling tools. Here, trapped skin volatiles on fur from sheep, a known preferred host of mosquito vectors of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), were used with a standard CDC light trap to improve catches of mosquito vectors. We tested the standard CDC light trap alone (L), and baited with (a) CO(2) (LC), (b) animal volatiles (LF), and (c) CO(2) plus animal volatiles (LCF) in two highly endemic areas for RVF in Kenya (Marigat and Ijara districts) from March-June and September-December 2010. The incidence rate ratios (IRR) that mosquito species chose traps baited with treatments (LCF, LC and LF) instead of the control (L) were estimated. Marigat was dominated by secondary vectors and host-seeking mosquitoes were 3-4 times more likely to enter LC and LCF traps [IRR = 3.1 and IRR = 3.8 respectively] than the L only trap. The LCF trap captured a greater number of mosquitoes than the LC trap (IRR = 1.23) although the difference was not significant. Analogous results were observed at Ijara, where species were dominated by key primary and primary RVFV vectors, with 1.6-, 6.5-, and 8.5-fold increases in trap captures recorded in LF, LC and LCF baited traps respectively, relative to the control. These catches all differed significantly from those trapped in L only. Further, there was a significant increase in trap captures in LCF compared to LC (IRR = 1.63). Mosquito species composition and trap counts differed between the RVF sites. However, within each site, catches differed in abundance only and no species preferences were noted in the different baited-traps. Identifying the attractive components present in these natural odors should lead to development of an effective odor-bait trapping system for population density

  12. Spatial-temporal analysis of the of the risk of Rift Valley Fever in Kenya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bett, B.; Omolo, A.; Hansen, F.; Notenbaert, A.; Kemp, S.

    2012-04-01

    Historical data on Rift Valley Fever (RVF) outbreaks in Kenya covering the period 1951 - 2010 were analyzed using a logistic regression model to identify factors associated with RVF occurrence. The analysis used a division, an administrative unit below a district, as the unit of analysis. The infection status of each division was defined on a monthly time scale and used as a dependent variable. Predictors investigated include: monthly precipitation (minimum, maximum and total), normalized difference vegetation index, altitude, agro-ecological zone, presence of game, livestock and human population densities, the number of times a division has had an outbreak before and time interval in months between successive outbreaks (used as a proxy for immunity). Both univariable and multivariable analyses were conducted. The models used incorporated an auto-regressive correlation matrix to account for clustering of observations in time, while dummy variables were fitted in the multivariable model to account for spatial relatedness/topology between divisions. This last procedure was followed because it is expected that the risk of RVF occurring in a given division increases when its immediate neighbor gets infected. Functional relationships between the continuous and the outcome variables were assessed to ensure that the linearity assumption was met. Deviance and leverage residuals were also generated from the final model and used for evaluating the goodness of fit of the model. Descriptive analyzes indicate that a total of 91 divisions in 42 districts (of the original 69 districts in place by 1999) reported RVF outbreaks at least once over the period. The mean interval between outbreaks was determined to be about 43 months. Factors that were positively associated with RVF occurrence include increased precipitation, high outbreak interval and the number of times a division has been infected or reported an outbreak. The model will be validated and used for developing an RVF

  13. Occurrence of rift valley fever in cattle in Ijara district, Kenya.

    PubMed

    Owange, Nelson O; Ogara, William O; Affognon, Hippolyte; Peter, Gathura B; Kasiiti, Jacqueline; Okuthe, Sam; Onyango-Ouma, W; Landmann, Tobias; Sang, Rosemary; Mbabu, Murithi

    2014-11-01

    Ijara district in Kenya was one of the hotspots of rift valley fever (RVF) during the 2006/2007 outbreak which led to human and animal deaths causing huge economic and public health losses. The main constraint in the control and prevention of RVF is inadequate knowledge on its occurrence during the interepidemic period. This study was aimed at understanding the occurrence of RVF in cattle in Ijara to enable the development of improved community-based disease surveillance, prediction, control and prevention. Six herds each 700-1000 cattle were identified with participatory involvement of locals and project technical team of the project. One animal per herd was tagged with global position system (GPS) collar to enable follow up. Sero-surveys were conducted periodically to understand the herd's movement through various ecological zones and risk of exposure to RVF virus. Sixty animals less than 3 years old from each herd were randomly selected each sampling time and sero-surveyed for RVF four times (September 2012, December 2012, February 2013 and May 2013) during the study period and along the nomadic movement route. The serum samples collected were subjected to RVF inhibition ELISA test to detect if there was exposure for RVF virus (RVFV). The RVF inhibition ELISA positive samples were subjected to IgM ELISA test to determine if the exposures were current or recent (within 14 days). The result of the survey indicated that 13.1% (183/1396) of cattle sero-surveyed had RVFV antibodies by inhibition ELISA test while 1.4% (18/1396) was positive for IgM ELISA test. The highest RVFV circulation was detected after herds pass through bony forest between Lamu and Ijara and Halei forested areas. These forested areas also had the highest IgM detections. The findings indicate that even limited rainfall was able to initiate RVFV circulation in Ijara region with highest circulation detected within forested areas with potential to become epidemic if rains persist with extensive

  14. Trace element mobility and transfer to vegetation within the Ethiopian Rift Valley lake areas.

    PubMed

    Kassaye, Yetneberk A; Skipperud, Lindis; Meland, Sondre; Dadebo, Elias; Einset, John; Salbu, Brit

    2012-10-26

    To evaluate critical trace element loads in native vegetation and calculate soil-to-plant transfer factors (TFs), 11 trace elements (Cr, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Mo, Cd, Pb and Mn) have been determined in leaves of 9 taxonomically verified naturally growing terrestrial plant species as well as in soil samples collected around 3 Ethiopian Rift Valley lakes (Koka, Ziway and Awassa). The Cr concentration in leaves of all the plant species was higher than the "normal" range, with the highest level (8.4 mg per kg dw) being observed in Acacia tortilis from the Lake Koka area. Caper species (Capparis fascicularis) and Ethiopian dogstooth grass (Cynodon aethiopicus) from Koka also contained exceptionally high levels of Cd (1 mg per kg dw) and Mo (32.8 mg per kg dw), respectively. Pb, As and Cu concentrations were low in the plant leaves from all sites. The low Cu level in important fodder plant species (Cynodon aethiopicus, Acacia tortilis and Opuntia ficus-indicus) implies potential deficiency in grazing and browsing animals. Compared to the Canadian environmental quality guideline and maximum allowable concentration in agricultural soils, the total soil trace element concentrations at the studied sites are safe for agricultural crop production. Enrichment factor was high for Zn in soils around Lakes Ziway and Awassa, resulting in moderate to high transfer of Zn to the studied plants. A six step sequential extraction procedure on the soils revealed a relatively high mobility of Cd, Se and Mn. Strong association of most trace elements with the redox sensitive fraction and mineral lattice was also confirmed by partial redundancy analysis. TF (mg per kg dw plants/mg per kg dw soil) values based on the total (TF(total)) and mobile fractions (TF(mobile)) of soil trace element concentrations varied widely among elements and plant species, with the averaged TF(total) and TF(mobile) values ranging from 0.01-2 and 1-60, respectively. Considering the mobile fraction in soils should

  15. Rift Valley Fever Virus MP-12 Vaccine Is Fully Attenuated by a Combination of Partial Attenuations in the S, M, and L Segments

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Terence E.; Smith, Jennifer K.; Zhang, Lihong; Juelich, Terry L.; Gong, Bin; Slack, Olga A. L.; Ly, Hoai J.; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Freiberg, Alexander N.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease endemic to Africa and characterized by a high rate of abortion in ruminants and hemorrhagic fever, encephalitis, or blindness in humans. RVF is caused by Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV; family Bunyaviridae, genus Phlebovirus), which has a tripartite negative-stranded RNA genome (consisting of the S, M, and L segments). Further spread of RVF into countries where the disease is not endemic may affect the economy and public health, and vaccination is an effective approach to prevent the spread of RVFV. A live-attenuated MP-12 vaccine is one of the best-characterized RVF vaccines for safety and efficacy and is currently conditionally licensed for use for veterinary purposes in the United States. Meanwhile, as of 2015, no other RVF vaccine has been conditionally or fully licensed for use in the United States. The MP-12 strain is derived from wild-type pathogenic strain ZH548, and its genome encodes 23 mutations in the three genome segments. However, the mechanism of MP-12 attenuation remains unknown. We characterized the attenuation of wild-type pathogenic strain ZH501 carrying a mutation(s) of the MP-12 S, M, or L segment in a mouse model. Our results indicated that MP-12 is attenuated by the mutations in the S, M, and L segments, while the mutations in the M and L segments confer stronger attenuation than those in the S segment. We identified a combination of 3 amino acid changes, Y259H (Gn), R1182G (Gc), and R1029K (L), that was sufficient to attenuate ZH501. However, strain MP-12 with reversion mutations at those 3 sites was still highly attenuated. Our results indicate that MP-12 attenuation is supported by a combination of multiple partial attenuation mutations and a single reversion mutation is less likely to cause a reversion to virulence of the MP-12 vaccine. IMPORTANCE Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-transmitted viral disease that is endemic to Africa and that has the potential to

  16. Aluto-Langano geothermal field, Ethiopian Rift Valley: Physical characteristics and the effects of gas on well performance

    SciTech Connect

    Gizaw, B. )

    1993-04-01

    This study, which focuses on the Aluto-Langano geothermal field, is part of the ongoing investigation of the geothermal systems in the Ethiopian Rift Valley. Aluto-Langano is a water-dominated gas-rich geothermal field, with a maximum temperature close to 360[degree]C, in the Lakes District region of the Ethiopian Rift Valley. The upflow zone for the system lies along a deep, young NNE trending fault and is characterized by boiling. As a result, the deep upflow zone loses some water as steam and produces a cooler saline shallow aquifer. The high partial pressure of carbon dioxide (about 30 bar in the reservoir) depresses the water table and restricts boiling to deeper levels. The main aquifer for the systems is in the Tertiary ignimbrite, which lies below 1400 m. The capacity of the existing wells is close to 7 MW[sub c]: the energy potential of the area is estimated to be between 3000 and 6000 MW[sub t] yr/km[sup 3], or 10-20 MW[sub c]/km[sup 3] for over 30 years.

  17. Temperature-sensitive mutations for live-attenuated Rift Valley fever vaccines: implications from other RNA viruses

    PubMed Central

    Nishiyama, Shoko; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease endemic to the African continent. RVF is characterized by high rate of abortions in ruminants and hemorrhagic fever, encephalitis, or blindness in humans. RVF is caused by the Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV: genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae). Vaccination is the only known effective strategy to prevent the disease, but there are no licensed RVF vaccines available for humans. A live-attenuated vaccine candidate derived from the wild-type pathogenic Egyptian ZH548 strain, MP-12, has been conditionally licensed for veterinary use in the U.S. MP-12 displays a temperature-sensitive (ts) phenotype and does not replicate at 41°C. The ts mutation limits viral replication at a specific body temperature and may lead to an attenuation of the virus. Here we will review well-characterized ts mutations for RNA viruses, and further discuss the potential in designing novel live-attenuated vaccines for RVF. PMID:26322023

  18. Development of real-time RT-PCR for the detection of low concentrations of Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Maquart, Marianne; Temmam, Sarah; Héraud, Jean-Michel; Leparc-Goffart, Isabelle; Cêtre-Sossah, Catherine; Dellagi, Koussay; Cardinale, Eric; Pascalis, Hervé

    2014-01-01

    In recent years, Madagascar and the Comoros archipelago have been affected by epidemics of Rift Valley fever (RVF), however detection of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in zebu, sheep and goats during the post epidemic periods was frequently unsuccessful. Thus, a highly sensitive real-time RT-PCR assay was developed for the detection of RVFV at low viral loads. A new RVF SYBR Green RT-PCR targeting the M segment was tested on serum from different RVF seronegative ruminant species collected from May 2010 to August 2011 in Madagascar and the Comoros archipelago and compared with a RVF specific quantitative real time RT-PCR technique, which is considered as the reference technique. The specificity was tested on a wide range of arboviruses or other viruses giving RVF similar clinical signs. A total of 38 out of 2756 serum samples tested positive with the new RT-PCR, whereas the reference technique only detected 5 out of the 2756. The described RT-PCR is an efficient diagnostic tool for the investigation of enzootic circulation of the RVF virus. It allows the detection of low viral RNA loads adapted for the investigations of reservoirs or specific epidemiological situations such as inter-epizootic periods.

  19. Development of an Upper Cambrian rimmed shelf along the Mississippi Valley Graben, Reelfoot Rift, and the southeastern Ozarks, southern Missouri

    SciTech Connect

    Palmer, J.R. . Dept. of Natural Resources)

    1993-03-01

    The paleogeographic distribution of intrashelf basin shales and limestones in the Bonneterre (Dresbachian) and Davis (Franconian) Formations, and associated data, suggests that rimmed shelf conditions separated the central Missouri part of the shelf from the Mississippi Valley Graben (MVG) of the Reelfoot Rift to the southeast. Middle Dresbachian rocks of the intrashelf basin area, predominantly limestones, indicate a discontinuous carbonate shelf rim. The succeeding widespread shales of the Franconian intrashelf basin indicate that a continuous rim had developed. The margin of the shelf rim is preserved in part of the 4,700-ft-thick Upper Cambrian succession along the northwest margin of the Mississippi Valley Graben (MVG) of the Reelfoot Rift. Equivalent rocks within the MVG are dominantly dark shales (1,600+ ft thick). The Amoco Spence test well penetrated the rim succession on the northwest margin of the MVG. At least 11 large-scale transgressive-regressive (T-R) carbonate cycles (120--600 ft thick) have been defined in this well; 7 cycles are equivalent to the Bonneterre and Davis Formations. These latter cycles have shaly limestone, or limestone at the base, and grade upward to dolostone or coarsely crystalline dolostone, which are interpreted to be shallowing-upward, bank margin-peritidal carbonates. Northwest of the rim margin and on the southeast side of the St. Francois Mountains, rocks equivalent to the rim succession consist of a series of ramp to platform cycles made up of dolostones and local limestones. Many carbonate shelves on passive margins are rimmed. The development of this Upper Cambrian rimmed shelf along the northwest margin of the MVG suggests that failed rifts can also localized such rims.

  20. Rift propagation at craton margin.: Distribution of faulting and volcanism in the North Tanzanian Divergence (East Africa) during Neogene times

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Gall, B.; Nonnotte, P.; Rolet, J.; Benoit, M.; Guillou, H.; Mousseau-Nonnotte, M.; Albaric, J.; Deverchère, J.

    2008-02-01

    A revised kinematic model is proposed for the Neogene tectono-magmatic development of the North Tanzanian Divergence where the axial valley in S Kenya splits southwards into a wide diverging pattern of block faulting in association with the disappearance of volcanism. Propagation of rifting along the S Kenya proto-rift during the last 8 Ma is first assumed to have operated by linkage of discrete magmatic cells as far S as the Ngorongoro-Kilimanjaro transverse volcanic belt that follows the margin of cratonic blocks in N Tanzania. Strain is believed to have nucleated throughout the thermally-weakened lithosphere in the transverse volcanic belt that might have later linked the S Kenya and N Tanzania rift segments with marked structural changes along-strike. The North Tanzanian Divergence is now regarded as a two-armed rift pattern involving: (1) a wide domain of tilted fault blocks to the W (Mbulu) that encompasses the Eyasi and Manyara fault systems, in direct continuation with the Natron northern trough. The reactivation of basement fabrics in the cold and intact Precambrian lithosphere in the Mbulu domain resulted in an oblique rift pattern that contrasts with the orthogonal extension that prevailed in the Magadi-Natron trough above a more attenuated lithosphere. (2) To the E, the Pangani horst-like range is thought to be a younger (< 1 Ma) structure that formed in response to the relocation of extension S of the Kilimanjaro magmatic center. A significant contrast in the mechanical behaviour of the stretched lithosphere in the North Tanzanian diverging rift is assumed to have occurred on both sides of the Masai cratonic block with a mid-crustal decoupling level to the W where asymmetrical fault-basin patterns are dominant (Magadi-Natron and Mbulu), whereas a component of dynamical uplift is suspected to have caused the topographic elevation of the Pangani range in relation with possible far-travelled mantle melts produced at depth further N.

  1. An inhibition enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for the detection of antibody to Rift Valley fever virus in humans, domestic and wild ruminants.

    PubMed

    Paweska, Janusz T; Mortimer, Elizabeth; Leman, Patricia A; Swanepoel, Robert

    2005-07-01

    This paper describes the development and validation of an inhibition ELISA based on gamma-irradiated tissue culture-derived antigen for the detection of antibody to Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in humans, domestic and wild ruminants. Validation data sets derived from field-collected sera in Africa (humans=1367, cattle=649, goats=806, sheep=493, buffalo=258, camels=156) were categorized according to the results of a virus neutralisation test. In addition, individual sera from 93 laboratory workers immunized with inactivated RVF vaccine, 136 serial bleeds from eight sheep experimentally infected with wild-type of RVFV, and 200 serial bleeds from 10 sheep vaccinated with the live-attenuated strain of the virus, were used to study the kinetics of RVFV antibody production under controlled conditions. At cut-off values selected at 95% accuracy level by the two-graph receiver operating characteristic analysis the ELISA sensitivity ranged from 99.47% (humans) to 100% (sheep, buffalo, camels). The specificity ranged from 99.29% (sheep) to 100% (camels). Compared to virus neutralisation and haemagglutination-inhibition tests, the ELISA was more sensitive in detection of the earliest immunological responses in experimentally infected and vaccinated sheep. Our results demonstrate that the ELISA format reported here can be used as a safe, robust and highly accurate diagnostic tool in disease-surveillance and control programmes, import/export veterinary certification, and for monitoring of the immune response in vaccinees.

  2. Transition From Rift to Drift at Obliquely Divergent Continental Rifts: the Paired Rio Muni (W Africa) and NE Brazilian Margins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turner, J. P.; Green, P. F.; Wilson, P. G.; Westbrook, G. K.; Lawrence, S.

    2005-12-01

    We develop a synoptic model for the breakup and drift of a major sheared continental margin system: the Rio Muni basin and its NE Brazilian counterpart. It relates the evolution of crustal structure determined from seismic interpretation (including gravity-modelling of the deep-imaging PROBE dataset) to the cooling history of this margin system yielded from thermal history data (mainly apatite fission track analysis - AFTAr - and vitrinite reflectance data). Shear margins initiate as a leaky transform fracture system accommodating the oblique (i.e. non-orthogonal) divergence of opposing rifted continental margins. As such, the transition from continental breakup (i.e. rupture) to continental drift (i.e. ocean opening) at shear margins exhibits significant differences from that of the much better understood normally divergent rifts, where the spreading vector is normal to the strike of the opposing rift margins. For example, unlike at normally divergent rifts, continental breakup and drift are separate episodes in the early evolution of shear margins. In Rio Muni-NE Brazil, they are recorded by separate breakup and drift unconformities spanning a 15-20Ma. interval, the time taken for the ocean ridge to traverse the length of the margin before a continuous arm of oceanic crust separated Rio Muni from its Brazilian counterpart. In the Rio Muni basin, the c.70km-wide Ascension Fracture Zone (AFZ) exhibits oblique-slip faulting and synrift half-graben formation that accommodated oblique extension during the period leading up to and immediately following whole-lithosphere failure and continental breakup 117Ma. Gravity-modelling of PROBE seismic profiles reveals a land-locked precursor oceanic basin that preceded full ocean opening and which subsequently was stranded on the African margin. Its existence supports the idea of multiple rift suture lines accommodating episodic breakup and it emphasizes the significance of separate breakup and drift episodes at shear margins

  3. An automated GIS/remotely sensed early warning system to detect elevated populations of vectors of Rift Valley fever, a mosquito-borne emerging virus threat

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Mosquito transmitted infectious diseases, like eastern equine encephalitis (EEE), Rift Valley fever (RVF), and West Nile virus (WNV), pose an international threat to animal and human health. An introduction of RVF into the U.S. would severely impact wild ungulate populations and the beef and dairy ...

  4. Complete Genome Sequence of Two Rift Valley Fever Virus Strains Isolated from Outbreaks in Saudi Arabia (2000) and Kenya (2006 to 2007).

    PubMed

    Shivanna, Vinay; McDowell, Chester; Wilson, William C; Richt, Juergen A

    2016-01-01

    The complete genome sequence, including the untranslated regions, of two Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) strains isolated from mosquitoes that were collected from disease outbreaks in Saudi Arabia (2001) and Kenya (2006 to 2007) were sequenced using next-generation sequencing technology. PMID:27609913

  5. Complete Genome Sequence of Two Rift Valley Fever Virus Strains Isolated from Outbreaks in Saudi Arabia (2000) and Kenya (2006 to 2007)

    PubMed Central

    Shivanna, Vinay; McDowell, Chester; Wilson, William C.

    2016-01-01

    The complete genome sequence, including the untranslated regions, of two Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) strains isolated from mosquitoes that were collected from disease outbreaks in Saudi Arabia (2001) and Kenya (2006 to 2007) were sequenced using next-generation sequencing technology. PMID:27609913

  6. Using remote sensing, ecological niche modeling, and Geographic Information Systems for Rift Valley fever risk assessment in the United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tedrow, Christine Atkins

    The primary goal in this study was to explore remote sensing, ecological niche modeling, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) as aids in predicting candidate Rift Valley fever (RVF) competent vector abundance and distribution in Virginia, and as means of estimating where risk of establishment in mosquitoes and risk of transmission to human populations would be greatest in Virginia. A second goal in this study was to determine whether the remotely-sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) can be used as a proxy variable of local conditions for the development of mosquitoes to predict mosquito species distribution and abundance in Virginia. As part of this study, a mosquito surveillance database was compiled to archive the historical patterns of mosquito species abundance in Virginia. In addition, linkages between mosquito density and local environmental and climatic patterns were spatially and temporally examined. The present study affirms the potential role of remote sensing imagery for species distribution prediction, and it demonstrates that ecological niche modeling is a valuable predictive tool to analyze the distributions of populations. The MaxEnt ecological niche modeling program was used to model predicted ranges for potential RVF competent vectors in Virginia. The MaxEnt model was shown to be robust, and the candidate RVF competent vector predicted distribution map is presented. The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) was found to be the most useful environmental-climatic variable to predict mosquito species distribution and abundance in Virginia. However, these results indicate that a more robust prediction is obtained by including other environmental-climatic factors correlated to mosquito densities (e.g., temperature, precipitation, elevation) with NDVI. The present study demonstrates that remote sensing and GIS can be used with ecological niche and risk modeling methods to estimate risk of virus establishment in mosquitoes and

  7. Ecological Succession, Land use Changes and Soil Organic C Stock in a Lake Retreat Area (Main Ethiopian Rift Valley)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nyssen, J.; Temesgen, H.; Lemenih, M.; Zenebe, A.; Kindu, M.; Haile, M.

    2007-12-01

    In the Main Ethiopian Rift Valley, ecological succession is related to continuous lake retreat (Nyssen et al., 2004). Human activities, through their impact on land use and cover, affect this ecological succession. Through a remote sensing study, we extricated ecological succession and human activity as causative factors for land use and cover changes (LUCC) and explored which impact this has on soil organic C (SOC) stock in lake retreat areas. Remote sensing data used include a Landsat MSS from 1973, a Landsat TM from 1986 and a Landsat ETM+ from 2000. A conventional type of classification was used whereby supervised classification of the 2000 image was supplemented by unsupervised classification of the older datasets. Due to decreased rainfall and water abstraction for intense irrigated agriculture and floriculture in its catchment, Lake Abijata lost 46 % of its area between 2000 and 2006. On the emerged lands, a good ecological succession was observed between 1973 and 1986, with clear evidence for: emerged land -> grassland -> Acacia bushes -> open woodland. Between 1986 and 2000, LUCC tendencies were totally reversed and woody vegetation decreased strongly, indicating increased human impact (Habtamu et al., 2007). Based on an analysis of the Landsat imagery, coupled with soil and land use studies, determinants for SOC stock were found. Firstly, SOC stock significantly differs between cultivated land and grazing land (3301 and 2626 g m-2) on the one hand, and woodland (4594 g m-2) on the other. The strongest explanation of SOC stock is related to the duration of emergence and hence of pedogenesis. Its proxy, elevation, explains much of the variability of SOC (R2 = 0.48). Using a multiple regression model involving elevation and IR reflectance, the SOC stock in the study area could be assessed at 2196 (+ - 1517) g m-2 SOC in 2000, against 3222 (+ - 1639) g m-2 in 1973 (Nyssen et al., 2007), which is related to the post-1986 reversing of ecological succession in

  8. Geology and palaeontology of the Late Miocene Middle Awash valley, Afar rift, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    WoldeGabriel, G; Haile-Selassie, Y; Renne, P R; Hart, W K; Ambrose, S H; Asfaw, B; Heiken, G; White, T

    2001-07-12

    The Middle Awash study area of Ethiopia's Afar rift has yielded abundant vertebrate fossils (approximately 10,000), including several hominid taxa. The study area contains a long sedimentary record spanning Late Miocene (5.3-11.2 Myr ago) to Holocene times. Exposed in a unique tectonic and volcanic transition zone between the main Ethiopian rift (MER) and the Afar rift, sediments along the western Afar rift margin in the Middle Awash provide a unique window on the Late Miocene of Ethiopia. These deposits have now yielded the earliest hominids, described in an accompanying paper and dated here to between 5.54 and 5.77 Myr. These geological and palaeobiological data from the Middle Awash provide fresh perspectives on hominid origins and early evolution. Here we show that these earliest hominids derive from relatively wet and wooded environments that were modulated by tectonic, volcanic, climatic and geomorphic processes. A similar wooded habitat also has been suggested for the 6.0 Myr hominoid fossils recently recovered from Lukeino, Kenya. These findings require fundamental reassessment of models that invoke a significant role for global climatic change and/or savannah habitat in the origin of hominids. PMID:11449271

  9. New structural/tectonical model and its implication on hydrological thinking and groundwater management - the Lake Tiberias, Jordan Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Inbar, Nimrod; Magri, Fabien; Yellin-Dror, Annat; Rosenthal, Eliahu; Möller, Peter; Siebert, Christian; Guttman, Josef

    2014-05-01

    Lake Tiberias is a fresh water lake located at the Kinneret basin which is approximately 30 km long and 10 km wide. It comprises a link in the chain of pull-apart basins that characterizes the structure of the conspicuous Jordan Rift Valley (JRV). The basin surface is about 200 m below mean sea level (msl) and basin-fill attains a thickness of up to 8 km. Until recently, studies focused mainly on the upper strata of basin fill. Consequently, a complete three dimensional geological model, including clear view of the tectonic framework at the Kinneret Basin was incomplete. This situation imposes great difficulty in understanding the local hydrological system and as consequence enforce constrains on groundwater management of the regional aquifers that flows towards the lake. A recently proposed structural/tectonical model (Inbar, 2012) enables revaluation of several geohydrological aspects at Sea of Galilee and its surroundings and a new hydrological model based on those findings aims to clarify those aspects with relation to groundwater management. The deep-seated stratigraphical units were seismically studied at the Kinnarot Valley (southern part of Kinneret basin) where sufficient information is available (Inbar, 2012). This study shows the subsidence and northwestward tilting of the basin floor (pre-rift formations) and the flow of thick Late Miocene salt accumulation accordingly. Furthermore, shallower seismic data, collected at the lake itself, shows a suspected salt dome close to the western boundary fault of the basin (Resnikov et al., 2004). Salt flow is now suggested to be a substantial factor in the tectonic play. At the lake surroundings there are several springs and boreholes where brine immerges from an estimated depth of about 2-3 kilometers. Significant differences in brine characteristics raised questions regarding the location of brine traps, flow mechanism and the mixture process between the fresh water and the brine. However, the effect of the

  10. The uppermost mantle shear wave velocity structure of eastern Africa from Rayleigh wave tomography: constraints on rift evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Donnell, J. P.; Adams, A.; Nyblade, A. A.; Mulibo, G. D.; Tugume, F.

    2013-08-01

    An expanded model of the 3-D shear wave velocity structure of the uppermost mantle beneath eastern Africa has been developed using earthquakes recorded by the AfricaArray East African Seismic Experiment in conjunction with data from permanent stations and previously deployed temporary stations. The combined data set comprises 331 earthquakes recorded on a total of 95 seismic stations spanning Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia and Malawi. In this study, data from 149 earthquakes were used to determine fundamental-mode Rayleigh wave phase velocities at periods ranging from 20 to 182 s using the two-plane wave method, and then combined with the similarly processed published measurements and inverted for a 3-D shear wave velocity model of the uppermost mantle. New features in the model include (1) a low-velocity region in western Zambia, (2) a high-velocity region in eastern Zambia, (3) a low-velocity region in eastern Tanzania and (4) low-velocity regions beneath the Lake Malawi rift. When considered in conjunction with mapped seismicity, these results support a secondary western rift branch striking southwestwards from Lake Tanganyika, likely exploiting the relatively weak lithosphere of the southern Kibaran Belt between the Bangweulu Block and the Congo Craton. We estimate a lithospheric thickness of ˜150-200 km for the substantial fast shear wave anomaly imaged in eastern Zambia, which may be a southward subsurface extension of the Bangweulu Block. The low-velocity region in eastern Tanzania suggests that the eastern rift branch trends southeastwards offshore eastern Tanzania coincident with the purported location of the northern margin of the proposed Ruvuma microplate. Pronounced velocity lows along the Lake Malawi rift are found beneath the northern and southern ends of the lake, but not beneath the central portion of the lake.

  11. Identification of Rift Valley Fever Virus Nucleocapsid Protein-RNA Binding Inhibitors Using a High-Throughput Screening Assay

    PubMed Central

    Ellenbecker, Mary; Lanchy, Jean-Marc; Lodmell, J. Stephen

    2012-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an emerging infectious pathogen that causes severe disease in humans and livestock and has the potential for global spread. Currently, there is no proven effective treatment for RVFV infection and there is no licensed vaccine. Inhibition of RNA binding to the essential viral nucleocapsid (N) protein represents a potential anti-viral therapeutic strategy because all of the functions performed by N during infection involve RNA binding. To target this interaction, we developed a fluorescence polarization-based high-throughput drug screening assay and tested 26,424 chemical compounds for their ability to disrupt an N-RNA complex. From libraries of FDA approved drugs, drug-like molecules and natural products extracts we identified several lead compounds that are promising candidates for medicinal chemistry. PMID:22644268

  12. Potential application of silver nanoparticles to control the infectivity of Rift Valley fever virus in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Borrego, Belén; Lorenzo, Gema; Mota-Morales, Josué D; Almanza-Reyes, Horacio; Mateos, Francisco; López-Gil, Elena; de la Losa, Nuria; Burmistrov, Vasily A; Pestryakov, Alexey N; Brun, Alejandro; Bogdanchikova, Nina

    2016-07-01

    In this work we have tested the potential antiviral activity of silver nanoparticles formulated as Argovit™ against Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV). The antiviral activity of Argovit was tested on Vero cell cultures and in type-I interferon receptor deficient mice (IFNAR (-/-) mice) by two different approaches: (i) different dilutions of Argovit were added to previously infected cells or administrated to animals infected with a lethal dose of virus; (ii) virus was pre-incubated with different dilutions of Argovit before inoculation in mice or cells. Though the ability of silver nanoparticles to control an ongoing RVFV infection in the conditions tested was limited, the incubation of virus with Argovit before the infection led to a reduction of the infectivity titers both in vitro and in vivo. These results reveal the potential application of silver nanoparticles to control the infectivity of RVFV, which is an important zoonotic pathogen.

  13. Potential application of silver nanoparticles to control the infectivity of Rift Valley fever virus in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Borrego, Belén; Lorenzo, Gema; Mota-Morales, Josué D; Almanza-Reyes, Horacio; Mateos, Francisco; López-Gil, Elena; de la Losa, Nuria; Burmistrov, Vasily A; Pestryakov, Alexey N; Brun, Alejandro; Bogdanchikova, Nina

    2016-07-01

    In this work we have tested the potential antiviral activity of silver nanoparticles formulated as Argovit™ against Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV). The antiviral activity of Argovit was tested on Vero cell cultures and in type-I interferon receptor deficient mice (IFNAR (-/-) mice) by two different approaches: (i) different dilutions of Argovit were added to previously infected cells or administrated to animals infected with a lethal dose of virus; (ii) virus was pre-incubated with different dilutions of Argovit before inoculation in mice or cells. Though the ability of silver nanoparticles to control an ongoing RVFV infection in the conditions tested was limited, the incubation of virus with Argovit before the infection led to a reduction of the infectivity titers both in vitro and in vivo. These results reveal the potential application of silver nanoparticles to control the infectivity of RVFV, which is an important zoonotic pathogen. PMID:26970026

  14. Laboratory transmission of Rift Valley fever virus by Phlebotomus duboscqi, Phlebotomus papatasi, Phlebotomus sergenti, and Sergentomyia schwetzi (Diptera: Psychodidae).

    PubMed

    Dohm, D J; Rowton, E D; Lawyer, P G; O'Guinn, M; Turell, M J

    2000-05-01

    We examined the potential for Phlebotomus papatasi (Scopoli), Phlebotomus duboscqi (Neveu-Lemarie), Phlebotomus sergenti (Parrot), and Sergentomyia schwetzi (Adler, Theodor, & Parrot) to transmit Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus. After feeding on hamsters that had been inoculated with RVF virus, P. papatasi, P. sergenti, and S. schwetzi became infected and developed disseminated infections. All P. papatasi and P. duboscqi inoculated with RVF virus developed high-titer infections. In contrast, only 41% of the inoculated S. schwetzi contained detectable virus, and infected individuals contained significantly less virus than the two Phlebotomus species. Although 50% of the inoculated P. duboscqi transmitted RVF virus to hamsters, only 14% of P. papatasi and none of the S. schwetzi transmitted this virus. Additional studies are needed to determine the role of sand flies as vectors of RVF virus.

  15. Rift Valley fever dynamics in Senegal: a project for pro-active adaptation and improvement of livestock raising management.

    PubMed

    Lafaye, Murielle; Sall, Baba; Ndiaye, Youssou; Vignolles, Cecile; Tourre, Yves M; Borchi, Franc Ois; Soubeyroux, Jean-Michel; Diallo, Mawlouth; Dia, Ibrahima; Ba, Yamar; Faye, Abdoulaye; Ba, Taibou; Ka, Alioune; Ndione, Jacques-André; Gauthier, Hélène; Lacaux, Jean-Pierre

    2013-11-01

    The multi-disciplinary French project "Adaptation à la Fiévre de la Vallée du Rift" (AdaptFVR) has concluded a 10-year constructive interaction between many scientists/partners involved with the Rift Valley fever (RVF) dynamics in Senegal. The three targeted objectives reached were (i) to produce--in near real-time--validated risk maps for parked livestock exposed to RVF mosquitoes/vectors bites; (ii) to assess the impacts on RVF vectors from climate variability at different time-scales including climate change; and (iii) to isolate processes improving local livestock management and animal health. Based on these results, concrete, pro-active adaptive actions were taken on site, which led to the establishment of a RVF early warning system (RVFews). Bulletins were released in a timely fashion during the project, tested and validated in close collaboration with the local populations, i.e. the primary users. Among the strategic, adaptive methods developed, conducted and evaluated in terms of cost/benefit analyses are the larvicide campaigns and the coupled bio-mathematical (hydrological and entomological) model technologies, which are being transferred to the staff of the "Centre de Suivi Ecologique" (CSE) in Dakar during 2013. Based on the results from the AdaptFVR project, other projects with similar conceptual and modelling approaches are currently being implemented, e.g. for urban and rural malaria and dengue in the French Antilles. PMID:24258902

  16. Rift Valley fever dynamics in Senegal: a project for pro-active adaptation and improvement of livestock raising management.

    PubMed

    Lafaye, Murielle; Sall, Baba; Ndiaye, Youssou; Vignolles, Cecile; Tourre, Yves M; Borchi, Franc Ois; Soubeyroux, Jean-Michel; Diallo, Mawlouth; Dia, Ibrahima; Ba, Yamar; Faye, Abdoulaye; Ba, Taibou; Ka, Alioune; Ndione, Jacques-André; Gauthier, Hélène; Lacaux, Jean-Pierre

    2013-11-01

    The multi-disciplinary French project "Adaptation à la Fiévre de la Vallée du Rift" (AdaptFVR) has concluded a 10-year constructive interaction between many scientists/partners involved with the Rift Valley fever (RVF) dynamics in Senegal. The three targeted objectives reached were (i) to produce--in near real-time--validated risk maps for parked livestock exposed to RVF mosquitoes/vectors bites; (ii) to assess the impacts on RVF vectors from climate variability at different time-scales including climate change; and (iii) to isolate processes improving local livestock management and animal health. Based on these results, concrete, pro-active adaptive actions were taken on site, which led to the establishment of a RVF early warning system (RVFews). Bulletins were released in a timely fashion during the project, tested and validated in close collaboration with the local populations, i.e. the primary users. Among the strategic, adaptive methods developed, conducted and evaluated in terms of cost/benefit analyses are the larvicide campaigns and the coupled bio-mathematical (hydrological and entomological) model technologies, which are being transferred to the staff of the "Centre de Suivi Ecologique" (CSE) in Dakar during 2013. Based on the results from the AdaptFVR project, other projects with similar conceptual and modelling approaches are currently being implemented, e.g. for urban and rural malaria and dengue in the French Antilles.

  17. Drinking water quality in the Ethiopian section of the East African Rift Valley I--data and health aspects.

    PubMed

    Reimann, Clemens; Bjorvatn, Kjell; Frengstad, Bjørn; Melaku, Zenebe; Tekle-Haimanot, Redda; Siewers, Ulrich

    2003-07-20

    Drinking water samples were collected throughout the Ethiopian part of the Rift Valley, separated into water drawn from deep wells (deeper than 60 m), shallow wells (<60 m deep), hot springs (T>36 degrees C), springs (T<32 degrees C) and rivers. A total of 138 samples were analysed for 70 parameters (Ag, Al, As, B, Ba, Be, Bi, Br, Ca, Cd, Ce, Cl, Co, Cr, Cs, Cu, Dy, Er, Eu, F, Fe, Ga, Gd, Ge, Hf, Hg, Ho, I, In, K, La, Li, Lu, Mg, Mn, Mo, Na, Nb, Nd, Ni, NO(2), NO(3), Pb, Pr, Rb, Sb, Se, Si, Sm, Sn, SO(4), Sr, Ta, Tb, Te, Th, Ti, Tl, Tm, U, V, W, Y, Yb, Zn, Zr, temperature, pH, conductivity and alkalinity) with ion chromatography (anions), spectrometry (ICP-OES and ICP-MS, cations) and parameter-specific (e.g. titration) techniques. In terms of European water directives and WHO guidelines, 86% of all wells yield water that fails to pass the quality standards set for drinking water. The most problematic element is fluoride (F), for which 33% of all samples returned values above 1.5 mg/l and up to 11.6 mg/l. The incidence of dental and skeletal fluorosis is well documented in the Rift Valley. Another problematic element may be uranium (U)-47% of all wells yield water with concentrations above the newly suggested WHO maximum acceptable concentration (MAC) of 2 microg/l. Fortunately, only 7% of the collected samples are above the 10 microg/l EU-MAC for As in drinking water.

  18. Chimpanzee insectivory in the northern half of Uganda's Rift Valley: do Bulindi chimpanzees conform to a regional pattern?

    PubMed

    McLennan, Matthew R

    2014-04-01

    Insects are a nutritious food source for many primates. In chimpanzees, insectivory is most prevalent among communities that manufacture tools to harvest social insects, particularly ants and termites. In contrast to other long-term study sites, chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) in Budongo Forest and Kibale National Park, Uganda, rarely eat insects and have small foraging tool kits, supporting speculation that infrequent insectivory--technically aided or otherwise--characterises chimpanzees in this part of Uganda's Rift Valley. To expand the dataset for this region, insect foraging was investigated at Bulindi (25 km from Budongo) over 19 months during two studies in 2007-2008 and 2012-2013. Systematic faecal analysis demonstrated that insectivory is a habitual foraging activity at this site. Overall levels of insect consumption varied considerably across months but were not predicted by monthly changes in rainfall or fruit intake. Unlike their Budongo and Kibale counterparts, Bulindi chimpanzees often consume ants (principally weaver ants, Oecophylla longinoda) and use sticks to dig out stingless bee (Meliponini) ground nests. In other respects, however, insectivory at Bulindi conforms to the pattern observed elsewhere in this region: they do not manufacture 'fishing' or 'dipping' tools to harvest termites and aggressive or hard-to-access ants (e.g., army ants, Dorylus spp.), despite availability of suitable prey. The Bulindi data lend support to the supposition that chimpanzees in this part of the Rift Valley rarely exploit termites and Dorylus ants, apparently lacking the 'cultural knowledge' that would enable them to do so most efficiently (i.e., tool use). The study's findings contribute to current debates about the relative influence of genetics, environment and culture in shaping regional and local variability in Pan foraging ecology. PMID:24522970

  19. A study of Rift Valley fever virus in Morogoro and Arusha regions of Tanzania – serology and farmers’ perceptions

    PubMed Central

    Wensman, Jonas J.; Lindahl, Johanna; Wachtmeister, Nica; Torsson, Emeli; Gwakisa, Paul; Kasanga, Christopher; Misinzo, Gerald

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonosis primarily affecting ruminants, resulting in epidemic abortions, fever, nasal and ocular discharges, haemorrhagic diarrhoea, and a high mortality rate among young animals. Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arthropod-borne RNA virus occurring in epizootic periods associated with heavy rainfall. The last outbreak of RVF in Tanzania was in 2006–2007, resulting in severe economic losses and impaired food security due to greater number of deaths of livestock. The aim of this study was to investigate the presence of antibodies against RVFV in sheep and goats in two different regions of Tanzania during an inter-epidemic period (IEP). In addition, the perception of important diseases among livestock keepers was assessed. Material and methods A cross-sectional serological survey was conducted in three purposively selected districts in Arusha and Morogoro regions of Tanzania. Serum samples from 354 sheep and goats were analysed in a commercial RVFV competitive ELISA. At the sampling missions, a questionnaire was used to estimate the socio-economic impact of infectious diseases. Results and discussion In total, 8.2% of the analysed samples were seropositive to RVF, and most seropositive animals were younger than 7 years, indicating a continuous circulation of RVFV in the two regions. None of the livestock keepers mentioned RVF as an important livestock disease. Conclusions This study confirms that RVFV is circulating at low levels in small ruminants during IEPs. In spite of recurring RVF outbreaks in Tanzania, livestock keepers seem to have a low awareness of the disease, making them poorly prepared and thus more vulnerable to future RVF outbreaks. PMID:26584830

  20. An unexpected recurrent transmission of Rift Valley fever virus in cattle in a temperate and mountainous area of Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Chevalier, Veronique; Rakotondrafara, Toky; Jourdan, Marion; Heraud, Jean Michel; Andriamanivo, Harena Rasamoelina; Durand, Benoit; Ravaomanana, Julie; Rollin, Pierre E; Rakotondravao, René

    2011-12-01

    Rift Valley fever is an acute, zoonotic viral disease of domestic ruminants, caused by a phlebovirus (Bunyaviridae family). A large outbreak occurred in Madagascar in 2008-2009. The goal of the present study was to evaluate the point prevalence of antibodies against Rift Valley Fever Virus (RVFV) in cattle in the Anjozorobe district, located in the wet and temperate highland region of Madagascar and yet heavily affected by the disease, and analyse environmental and trade factors potentially linked to RVFV transmission. A serological study was performed in 2009 in 894 bovines. For each bovine, the following variables were recorded: age, location of the night pen, minimum distance from the pen to the nearest water point and the forest, nearest water point type, and herd replacement practices. The serological data were analyzed using a generalized linear mixed model. The overall anti-RVFV IgG seroprevalence rate was 28% [CI95% 25-31]. Age was statistically linked to prevalence (p = 10(-4)), being consistent with a recurrent RVFV circulation. Distance from the night pen to the nearest water point was a protective factor (p = 5.10(-3)), which would be compatible with a substantial part of the virus transmission being carried out by nocturnal mosquito vectors. However, water point type did not influence the risk of infection: several mosquito species are probably involved. Cattle belonging to owners who purchase animals to renew the herd were significantly more likely to have seroconverted than others (p = 0.04): cattle trade may contribute to the introduction of the virus in this area. The minimum distance of the night pen to the forest was not linked to the prevalence. This is the first evidence of a recurrent transmission of RVFV in such an ecosystem that associates a wet, temperate climate, high altitude, paddy fields, and vicinity to a dense rain forest. Persistence mechanisms need to be further investigated.

  1. Sediment infill within rift basins: Facies distribution and effects of deformation: Examples from the Kenya and Tanganyika Rifts, East Africa

    SciTech Connect

    Tiercelin, J.J.; Lezzar, K.E. ); Richert, J.P. )

    1994-07-01

    Oil is known from lacustrine basins of the east African rift. The geology of such basins is complex and different depending on location in the eastern and western branches. The western branch has little volcanism, leading to long-lived basins, such as Lake Tanganyika, whereas a large quantity of volcanics results in the eastern branch characterized by ephemeral basins, as the Baringo-Bogoria basin in Kenya. The Baringo-Bogoria basin is a north-south half graben formed in the middle Pleistocene and presently occupied by the hypersaline Lake Bogoria and the freshwater Lake Baringo. Lake Bogoria is fed by hot springs and ephemeral streams controlled by grid faults bounding the basin to the west. The sedimentary fill is formed by cycles of organic oozes having a good petroleum potential and evaporites. On the other hand, and as a consequence of the grid faults, Lake Baringo is fed by permanent streams bringing into the basin large quantities of terrigenous sediments. Lake Tanganyika is a meromictic lake 1470 m deep and 700 km long, of middle Miocene age. It is subdivided into seven asymmetric half grabens separated by transverse ridges. The sedimentary fill is thick and formed by organic oozes having a very good petroleum potential. In contrast to Bogoria, the lateral distribution of organic matter is characterized by considerable heterogeneity due to the existence of structural blocks or to redepositional processes.

  2. Catchment rehabilitation and hydro-geomorphic characteristics of mountain streams in the western Rift Valley escarpment of Northern Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghebreyohannes Asfaha, Tesfaalem; Frankl, Amaury; Haile, Mitiku; Nyssen, Jan

    2013-04-01

    The catchments in the western Rift Valley escarpment of Northern Ethiopia are highly responsive in terms of hydro-geomorphic changes. With rapid deforestation in the first half of the 20th century, dense gully and scar networks developed, exporting huge amounts of runoff and sediment down to the fertile and densely populated Raya Valley. Consequently, threatening the environment and the livelihoods of the people both in the upstream and downstream areas. To reverse this problem, catchment-scale rehabilitation activities were initiated in the mid-1980s. In this study, we examine the hydro-geomorphic response of streams after catchment rehabilitation. Scar density was digitized from Google Earth imagery (2005) in 20 adjacent catchments and was explained in terms of its corresponding Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and slope gradient. This was accompanied by analysis of incidental repeat photographs and field observations. As evidenced by the series of repeat photographs, the vegetation cover of the catchments decreased up to 1975 and rapid reforestation occurred thereafter. A multiple regression analysis (R2=0.53, P<0.01) showed that scar density is negatively correlated with NDVI and positively with average gradient of very steep slopes (>60%). Moreover, due to reduction in discharge and sediment flow from the rehabilitated catchments, stream adjustments were observed in the field: previously braided stream channels have changed to single-thread streams, many lateral bars are stabilized and covered by vegetation, stream channels are incising due to clear water effect and the size of boulder deposits decreases. Therefore, the study shows that, land degradation activities in the upper catchments resulted in changes in hydro-geomorphic characteristics of the streams and reduction in runoff and sediment transport to the Raya Valley. Key words: scar density; NDVI; stream incision; soil and water conservation; stream adjustment; land use change.

  3. Opaline cherts associated with sublacustrine hydrothermal springs at Lake Bogoria, Kenya Rift valley

    SciTech Connect

    Renaut, R.W.; Owen, R.B.

    1988-08-01

    An unusual group of cherts found at saline, alkaline Lake Bogoria in the Kenya Rift differs from the Magadi-type cherts commonly associated with saline, alkaline lakes. The cherts are opaline, rich in diatoms, and formed from a siliceous, probably gelatinous, precursor that precipitated around submerged alkaline hot springs during a Holocene phase of high lake level. Silica precipitation resulted from rapid drop in the temperature of the spring waters and, possibly, pH. Lithification began before subaerial exposure. Ancient analogous cherts are likely to be localized deposits along fault lines.

  4. Evaluation of the Efficacy, Potential for Vector Transmission, and Duration of Immunity of MP-12, an Attenuated Rift Valley Fever Virus Vaccine Candidate, in Sheep

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, Kristine E.; Drolet, Barbara S.; Lindsay, Robbin; Mecham, James O.; Reeves, Will K.; Weingartl, Hana M.; Wilson, William C.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes serious disease in ruminants and humans in Africa. In North America, there are susceptible ruminant hosts and competent mosquito vectors, yet there are no fully licensed animal vaccines for this arthropod-borne virus, should it be introduced. Studies in sheep and cattle have found the attenuated strain of RVFV, MP-12, to be both safe and efficacious based on early testing, and a 2-year conditional license for use in U.S. livestock has been issued. The purpose of this study was to further determine the vaccine's potential to infect mosquitoes, the duration of humoral immunity to 24 months postvaccination, and the ability to prevent disease and viremia from a virulent challenge. Vaccination experiments conducted in sheep found no evidence of a potential for vector transmission to 4 North American mosquito species. Neutralizing antibodies were elicited, with titers of >1:40 still present at 24 months postvaccination. Vaccinates were protected from clinical signs and detectable viremia after challenge with virulent virus, while control sheep had fever and high-titered viremia extending for 5 days. Antibodies to three viral proteins (nucleocapsid N, the N-terminal half of glycoprotein GN, and the nonstructural protein from the short segment NSs) were also detected to 24 months using competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. This study demonstrates that the MP-12 vaccine given as a single dose in sheep generates protective immunity to a virulent challenge with antibody duration of at least 2 years, with no evidence of a risk for vector transmission. PMID:26041042

  5. Chemotactic and Inflammatory Responses in the Liver and Brain Are Associated with Pathogenesis of Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection in the Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Juelich, Terry L.; Agar, Stacy L.; Poussard, Allison; Ragland, Dan; Freiberg, Alexander N.; Holbrook, Michael R.

    2012-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a major human and animal pathogen associated with severe disease including hemorrhagic fever or encephalitis. RVFV is endemic to parts of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, but there is significant concern regarding its introduction into non-endemic regions and the potentially devastating effect to livestock populations with concurrent infections of humans. To date, there is little detailed data directly comparing the host response to infection with wild-type or vaccine strains of RVFV and correlation with viral pathogenesis. Here we characterized clinical and systemic immune responses to infection with wild-type strain ZH501 or IND vaccine strain MP-12 in the C57BL/6 mouse. Animals infected with live-attenuated MP-12 survived productive viral infection with little evidence of clinical disease and minimal cytokine response in evaluated tissues. In contrast, ZH501 infection was lethal, caused depletion of lymphocytes and platelets and elicited a strong, systemic cytokine response which correlated with high virus titers and significant tissue pathology. Lymphopenia and platelet depletion were indicators of disease onset with indications of lymphocyte recovery correlating with increases in G-CSF production. RVFV is hepatotropic and in these studies significant clinical and histological data supported these findings; however, significant evidence of a pro-inflammatory response in the liver was not apparent. Rather, viral infection resulted in a chemokine response indicating infiltration of immunoreactive cells, such as neutrophils, which was supported by histological data. In brains of ZH501 infected mice, a significant chemokine and pro-inflammatory cytokine response was evident, but with little pathology indicating meningoencephalitis. These data suggest that RVFV pathogenesis in mice is associated with a loss of liver function due to liver necrosis and hepatitis yet the long-term course of disease for those that might survive the

  6. A Genome-Wide RNA Interference Screen Identifies a Role for Wnt/β-Catenin Signaling during Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection

    PubMed Central

    Harmon, Brooke; Bird, Sara W.; Schudel, Benjamin R.; Hatch, Anson V.; Rasley, Amy

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arbovirus within the Bunyaviridae family capable of causing serious morbidity and mortality in humans and livestock. To identify host factors involved in bunyavirus replication, we employed genome-wide RNA interference (RNAi) screening and identified 381 genes whose knockdown reduced infection. The Wnt pathway was the most represented pathway when gene hits were functionally clustered. With further investigation, we found that RVFV infection activated Wnt signaling, was enhanced when Wnt signaling was preactivated, was reduced with knockdown of β-catenin, and was blocked using Wnt signaling inhibitors. Similar results were found using distantly related bunyaviruses La Crosse virus and California encephalitis virus, suggesting a conserved role for Wnt signaling in bunyaviral infection. We propose a model where bunyaviruses activate Wnt-responsive genes to regulate optimal cell cycle conditions needed to promote efficient viral replication. The findings in this study should aid in the design of efficacious host-directed antiviral therapeutics. IMPORTANCE RVFV is a mosquito-borne bunyavirus that is endemic to Africa but has demonstrated a capacity for emergence in new territories (e.g., the Arabian Peninsula). As a zoonotic pathogen that primarily affects livestock, RVFV can also cause lethal hemorrhagic fever and encephalitis in humans. Currently, there are no treatments or fully licensed vaccines for this virus. Using high-throughput RNAi screening, we identified canonical Wnt signaling as an important host pathway regulating RVFV infection. The beneficial role of Wnt signaling was observed for RVFV, along with other disparate bunyaviruses, indicating a conserved bunyaviral replication mechanism involving Wnt signaling. These studies supplement our knowledge of the fundamental mechanisms of bunyavirus infection and provide new avenues for countermeasure development against pathogenic bunyaviruses. PMID:27226375

  7. Multiple virus lineages sharing recent common ancestry were associated with a Large Rift Valley fever outbreak among livestock in Kenya during 2006-2007.

    PubMed

    Bird, Brian H; Githinji, Jane W K; Macharia, Joseph M; Kasiiti, Jacqueline L; Muriithi, Rees M; Gacheru, Stephen G; Musaa, Joseph O; Towner, Jonathan S; Reeder, Serena A; Oliver, Jennifer B; Stevens, Thomas L; Erickson, Bobbie R; Morgan, Laura T; Khristova, Marina L; Hartman, Amy L; Comer, James A; Rollin, Pierre E; Ksiazek, Thomas G; Nichol, Stuart T

    2008-11-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus historically has caused widespread and extensive outbreaks of severe human and livestock disease throughout Africa, Madagascar, and the Arabian Peninsula. Following unusually heavy rainfall during the late autumn of 2006, reports of human and animal illness consistent with RVF virus infection emerged across semiarid regions of the Garissa District of northeastern Kenya and southern Somalia. Following initial RVF virus laboratory confirmation, a high-throughput RVF diagnostic facility was established at the Kenyan Central Veterinary Laboratories in Kabete, Kenya, to support the real-time identification of infected livestock and to facilitate outbreak response and control activities. A total of 3,250 specimens from a variety of animal species, including domesticated livestock (cattle, sheep, goats, and camels) and wildlife collected from a total of 55 of 71 Kenyan administrative districts, were tested by molecular and serologic assays. Evidence of RVF infection was found in 9.2% of animals tested and across 23 districts of Kenya, reflecting the large number of affected livestock and the geographic extent of the outbreak. The complete S, M, and/or L genome segment sequence was obtained from a total of 31 RVF virus specimens spanning the entire known outbreak period (December-May) and geographic areas affected by RVF virus activity. Extensive genomic analyses demonstrated the concurrent circulation of multiple virus lineages, gene segment reassortment, and the common ancestry of the 2006/2007 outbreak viruses with those from the 1997-1998 east African RVF outbreak. Evidence of recent increases in genomic diversity and effective population size 2 to 4 years prior to the 2006-2007 outbreak also was found, indicating ongoing RVF virus activity and evolution during the interepizootic/epidemic period. These findings have implications for further studies of basic RVF virus ecology and the design of future surveillance/diagnostic activities, and

  8. A Stochastic Model to Study Rift Valley Fever Persistence with Different Seasonal Patterns of Vector Abundance: New Insights on the Endemicity in the Tropical Island of Mayotte.

    PubMed

    Cavalerie, Lisa; Charron, Maud V P; Ezanno, Pauline; Dommergues, Laure; Zumbo, Betty; Cardinale, Eric

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic vector-borne disease causing abortion storms in cattle and human epidemics in Africa. Our aim was to evaluate RVF persistence in a seasonal and isolated population and to apply it to Mayotte Island (Indian Ocean), where the virus was still silently circulating four years after its last known introduction in 2007. We proposed a stochastic model to estimate RVF persistence over several years and under four seasonal patterns of vector abundance. Firstly, the model predicted a wide range of virus spread patterns, from obligate persistence in a constant or tropical environment (without needing vertical transmission or reintroduction) to frequent extinctions in a drier climate. We then identified for each scenario of seasonality the parameters that most influenced prediction variations. Persistence was sensitive to vector lifespan and biting rate in a tropical climate, and to host viraemia duration and vector lifespan in a drier climate. The first epizootic peak was primarily sensitive to viraemia duration and thus likely to be controlled by vaccination, whereas subsequent peaks were sensitive to vector lifespan and biting rate in a tropical climate, and to host birth rate and viraemia duration in arid climates. Finally, we parameterized the model according to Mayotte known environment. Mosquito captures estimated the abundance of eight potential RVF vectors. Review of RVF competence studies on these species allowed adjusting transmission probabilities per bite. Ruminant serological data since 2004 and three new cross-sectional seroprevalence studies are presented. Transmission rates had to be divided by more than five to best fit observed data. Five years after introduction, RVF persisted in more than 10% of the simulations, even under this scenario of low transmission. Hence, active surveillance must be maintained to better understand the risk related to RVF persistence and to prevent new introductions. PMID:26147799

  9. Genetic evidence for Rift Valley fever outbreaks in Madagascar resulting from virus introductions from the East African mainland rather than enzootic maintenance.

    PubMed

    Carroll, Serena A; Reynes, Jean-Marc; Khristova, Marina L; Andriamandimby, Soa Fy; Rollin, Pierre E; Nichol, Stuart T

    2011-07-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a mosquito-borne phlebovirus, has been detected in Madagascar since 1979, with occasional outbreaks. In 2008 to 2009, a large RVFV outbreak was detected in Malagasy livestock and humans during two successive rainy seasons. To determine whether cases were due to enzootic maintenance of the virus within Madagascar or to importation from the East African mainland, nine RVFV whole genomic sequences were generated for viruses from the 1991 and 2008 Malagasy outbreaks. Bayesian coalescent analyses of available whole S, M, and L segment sequences were used to estimate the time to the most recent common ancestor for the RVFVs. The 1979 Madagascar isolate shared a common ancestor with strains on the mainland around 1972. The 1991 Madagascar isolates were in a clade distinct from that of the 1979 isolate and shared a common ancestor around 1987. Finally, the 2008 Madagascar viruses were embedded within a large clade of RVFVs from the 2006-2007 outbreak in East Africa and shared a common ancestor around 2003 to 2004. These results suggest that the most recent Madagascar outbreak was caused by a virus likely arriving in the country some time between 2003 and 2008 and that this outbreak may be an extension of the 2006-2007 East African outbreak. Clustering of the Malagasy sequences into subclades indicates that the viruses have continued to evolve during their short-term circulation within the country. These data are consistent with the notion that RVFV outbreaks in Madagascar result not from emergence from enzootic cycles within the country but from recurrent virus introductions from the East African mainland.

  10. A genome-wide RNA interference screen identifies a role for Wnt/β-catenin signaling during Rift Valley Fever Virus infection

    DOE PAGES

    Harmon, Brooke; Bird, Sara W.; Schudel, Benjamin R.; Hatch, Anson V.; Rasley, Amy; Negrete, Oscar A.

    2016-05-25

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arbovirus within the Bunyaviridae family capable of causing serious morbidity and mortality in humans and livestock. To identify host factors involved in bunyavirus replication, we employed genome-wide RNA interference (RNAi) screening and identified 381 genes whose knockdown reduced infection. The Wnt pathway was the most represented pathway when gene hits were functionally clustered. With further investigation, we found that RVFV infection activated Wnt signaling, was enhanced when Wnt signaling was preactivated, was reduced with knockdown of β-catenin, and was blocked using Wnt signaling inhibitors. Similar results were found using distantly related bunyaviruses Lamore » Crosse virus and California encephalitis virus, suggesting a conserved role for Wnt signaling in bunyaviral infection. We propose a model where bunyaviruses activate Wnt-responsive genes to regulate optimal cell cycle conditions needed to promote efficient viral replication. The findings in this study should aid in the design of efficacious host-directed antiviral therapeutics. IMPORTANCE RVFV is a mosquito-borne bunyavirus that is endemic to Africa but has demonstrated a capacity for emergence in new territories (e.g., the Arabian Peninsula). As a zoonotic pathogen that primarily affects livestock, RVFV can also cause lethal hemorrhagic fever and encephalitis in humans. Currently, there are no treatments or fully licensed vaccines for this virus. Using high-throughput RNAi screening, we identified canonical Wnt signaling as an important host pathway regulating RVFV infection. The beneficial role of Wnt signaling was observed for RVFV, along with other disparate bunyaviruses, indicating a conserved bunyaviral replication mechanism involving Wnt signaling. Lastly, these studies supplement our knowledge of the fundamental mechanisms of bunyavirus infection and provide new avenues for countermeasure development against pathogenic bunyaviruses.« less

  11. Application of polar-orbiting, meteorological satellite data to detect flooding of Rift Valley Fever virus vector mosquito habitats in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Linthicum, K J; Bailey, C L; Tucker, C J; Mitchell, K D; Logan, T M; Davies, F G; Kamau, C W; Thande, P C; Wagateh, J N

    1990-10-01

    Measurements of green-leaf vegetation dynamics recorded by the advanced very high resolution radiometer instruments onboard National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration satellites 7 and 9 were used to derive ground moisture and rainfall patterns in Kenya and monitor resultant flooding of mosquito larval habitats (dambos) likely to support Rift Valley Fever virus vector mosquitoes (Aedes and Culex spp.). Satellite-derived data from mid-1981 to December 1988 have been analysed with corresponding rainfall, flooding and vector population data as they relate to Rift Valley Fever virus ecology. Single (7 x 7 km) and multiple grid-cell image analysis (200 x 300 km) in small localized areas and large geographical regions, respectively, of vegetation data were used to quantify the potential for flooding of mosquito breeding habitats. The ability to detect accurately parameters, such as ground moisture, that determine flooding could provide local officials with sufficient warning to allow for implementation of specific mosquito control measures before a disease outbreak.

  12. Presence of Viral RNA and Proteins in Exosomes from Cellular Clones Resistant to Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection.

    PubMed

    Ahsan, Noor A; Sampey, Gavin C; Lepene, Ben; Akpamagbo, Yao; Barclay, Robert A; Iordanskiy, Sergey; Hakami, Ramin M; Kashanchi, Fatah

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever Virus (RVFV) is a RNA virus that belongs to the genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae. It infects humans and livestock and causes Rift Valley fever. RVFV is considered an agricultural pathogen by the USDA, as it can cause up to 100% abortion in cattle and extensive death of newborns. In addition, it is designated as Category A pathogen by the CDC and the NIAID. In some human cases of RVFV infection, the virus causes fever, ocular damage, liver damage, hemorrhagic fever, and death. There are currently limited options for vaccine candidates, which include the MP-12 and clone 13 versions of RVFV. Viral infections often deregulate multiple cellular pathways that contribute to replication and host pathology. We have previously shown that latent human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) and human T-cell lymphotropic virus-1 (HTLV-1) infected cells secrete exosomes that contain short viral RNAs, limited number of genomic RNAs, and viral proteins. These exosomes largely target neighboring cells and activate the NF-κB pathway, leading to cell proliferation, and overall better viral replication. In this manuscript, we studied the effects of exosome formation from RVFV infected cells and their function on recipient cells. We initially infected cells, isolated resistant clones, and further purified using dilution cloning. We then characterized these cells as resistant to new RVFV infection, but sensitive to other viral infections, including Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis Virus (VEEV). These clones contained normal markers (i.e., CD63) for exosomes and were able to activate the TLR pathway in recipient reporter cells. Interestingly, the exosome rich preparations, much like their host cell, contained viral RNA (L, M, and S genome). The RNAs were detected using qRT-PCR in both parental and exosomal preparations as well as in CD63 immunoprecipitates. Viral proteins such as N and a modified form of NSs were present in some of these exosomes. Finally, treatment of

  13. Characterization of Rift Valley Fever Virus MP-12 Strain Encoding NSs of Punta Toro Virus or Sandfly Fever Sicilian Virus

    PubMed Central

    Lihoradova, Olga A.; Indran, Sabarish V.; Kalveram, Birte; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Head, Jennifer A.; Gong, Bin; Tigabu, Bersabeh; Juelich, Terry L.; Freiberg, Alexander N.; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV; genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic pathogen which can cause hemorrhagic fever, neurological disorders or blindness in humans, and a high rate of abortion in ruminants. MP-12 strain, a live-attenuated candidate vaccine, is attenuated in the M- and L-segments, but the S-segment retains the virulent phenotype. MP-12 was manufactured as an Investigational New Drug vaccine by using MRC-5 cells and encodes a functional NSs gene, the major virulence factor of RVFV which 1) induces a shutoff of the host transcription, 2) inhibits interferon (IFN)-β promoter activation, and 3) promotes the degradation of dsRNA-dependent protein kinase (PKR). MP-12 lacks a marker for differentiation of infected from vaccinated animals (DIVA). Although MP-12 lacking NSs works for DIVA, it does not replicate efficiently in type-I IFN-competent MRC-5 cells, while the use of type-I IFN-incompetent cells may negatively affect its genetic stability. To generate modified MP-12 vaccine candidates encoding a DIVA marker, while still replicating efficiently in MRC-5 cells, we generated recombinant MP-12 encoding Punta Toro virus Adames strain NSs (rMP12-PTNSs) or Sandfly fever Sicilian virus NSs (rMP12-SFSNSs) in place of MP-12 NSs. We have demonstrated that those recombinant MP-12 viruses inhibit IFN-β mRNA synthesis, yet do not promote the degradation of PKR. The rMP12-PTNSs, but not rMP12-SFSNSs, replicated more efficiently than recombinant MP-12 lacking NSs in MRC-5 cells. Mice vaccinated with rMP12-PTNSs or rMP12-SFSNSs induced neutralizing antibodies at a level equivalent to those vaccinated with MP-12, and were efficiently protected from wild-type RVFV challenge. The rMP12-PTNSs and rMP12-SFSNSs did not induce antibodies cross-reactive to anti-RVFV NSs antibody and are therefore applicable to DIVA. Thus, rMP12-PTNSs is highly efficacious, replicates efficiently in MRC-5 cells, and encodes a DIVA marker, all of which are

  14. Adapting to Climate Variability and Change: Experiences from Cereal-Based Farming in the Central Rift and Kobo Valleys, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kassie, Belay Tseganeh; Hengsdijk, Huib; Rötter, Reimund; Kahiluoto, Helena; Asseng, Senthold; Van Ittersum, Martin

    2013-11-01

    Small-holder farmers in Ethiopia are facing several climate related hazards, in particular highly variable rainfall with severe droughts which can have devastating effects on their livelihoods. Projected changes in climate are expected to aggravate the existing challenges. This study examines farmer perceptions on current climate variability and long-term changes, current adaptive strategies, and potential barriers for successful further adaptation in two case study regions—the Central Rift Valley (CRV) and Kobo Valley. The study was based on a household questionnaire, interviews with key stakeholders, and focus group discussions. The result revealed that about 99 % of the respondents at the CRV and 96 % at the Kobo Valley perceived an increase in temperature and 94 % at CRV and 91 % at the Kobo Valley perceived a decrease in rainfall over the last 20-30 years. Inter-annual and intraseasonal rainfall variability also has increased according to the farmers. The observed climate data (1977-2009) also showed an increasing trend in temperature and high inter-annual and intra-seasonal rainfall variability. In contrast to farmers’ perceptions of a decrease in rainfall totals, observed rainfall data showed no statistically significant decline. The interaction among various bio-physical and socio-economic factors, changes in rainfall intensity and reduced water available to crops due to increased hot spells, may have influenced the perception of farmers with respect to rainfall trends. In recent decades, farmers in both the CRV and Kobo have changed farming practices to adapt to perceived climate change and variability, for example, through crop and variety choice, adjustment of cropping calendar, and in situ moisture conservation. These relatively low-cost changes in farm practices were within the limited adaptation capacity of farmers, which may be insufficient to deal with the impacts of future climate change. Anticipated climate change is expected to impose new

  15. Adapting to climate variability and change: experiences from cereal-based farming in the central rift and Kobo Valleys, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Kassie, Belay Tseganeh; Hengsdijk, Huib; Rötter, Reimund; Kahiluoto, Helena; Asseng, Senthold; Van Ittersum, Martin

    2013-11-01

    Small-holder farmers in Ethiopia are facing several climate related hazards, in particular highly variable rainfall with severe droughts which can have devastating effects on their livelihoods. Projected changes in climate are expected to aggravate the existing challenges. This study examines farmer perceptions on current climate variability and long-term changes, current adaptive strategies, and potential barriers for successful further adaptation in two case study regions-the Central Rift Valley (CRV) and Kobo Valley. The study was based on a household questionnaire, interviews with key stakeholders, and focus group discussions. The result revealed that about 99 % of the respondents at the CRV and 96 % at the Kobo Valley perceived an increase in temperature and 94 % at CRV and 91 % at the Kobo Valley perceived a decrease in rainfall over the last 20-30 years. Inter-annual and intraseasonal rainfall variability also has increased according to the farmers. The observed climate data (1977-2009) also showed an increasing trend in temperature and high inter-annual and intra-seasonal rainfall variability. In contrast to farmers' perceptions of a decrease in rainfall totals, observed rainfall data showed no statistically significant decline. The interaction among various bio-physical and socio-economic factors, changes in rainfall intensity and reduced water available to crops due to increased hot spells, may have influenced the perception of farmers with respect to rainfall trends. In recent decades, farmers in both the CRV and Kobo have changed farming practices to adapt to perceived climate change and variability, for example, through crop and variety choice, adjustment of cropping calendar, and in situ moisture conservation. These relatively low-cost changes in farm practices were within the limited adaptation capacity of farmers, which may be insufficient to deal with the impacts of future climate change. Anticipated climate change is expected to impose new

  16. Adapting to climate variability and change: experiences from cereal-based farming in the central rift and Kobo Valleys, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Kassie, Belay Tseganeh; Hengsdijk, Huib; Rötter, Reimund; Kahiluoto, Helena; Asseng, Senthold; Van Ittersum, Martin

    2013-11-01

    Small-holder farmers in Ethiopia are facing several climate related hazards, in particular highly variable rainfall with severe droughts which can have devastating effects on their livelihoods. Projected changes in climate are expected to aggravate the existing challenges. This study examines farmer perceptions on current climate variability and long-term changes, current adaptive strategies, and potential barriers for successful further adaptation in two case study regions-the Central Rift Valley (CRV) and Kobo Valley. The study was based on a household questionnaire, interviews with key stakeholders, and focus group discussions. The result revealed that about 99 % of the respondents at the CRV and 96 % at the Kobo Valley perceived an increase in temperature and 94 % at CRV and 91 % at the Kobo Valley perceived a decrease in rainfall over the last 20-30 years. Inter-annual and intraseasonal rainfall variability also has increased according to the farmers. The observed climate data (1977-2009) also showed an increasing trend in temperature and high inter-annual and intra-seasonal rainfall variability. In contrast to farmers' perceptions of a decrease in rainfall totals, observed rainfall data showed no statistically significant decline. The interaction among various bio-physical and socio-economic factors, changes in rainfall intensity and reduced water available to crops due to increased hot spells, may have influenced the perception of farmers with respect to rainfall trends. In recent decades, farmers in both the CRV and Kobo have changed farming practices to adapt to perceived climate change and variability, for example, through crop and variety choice, adjustment of cropping calendar, and in situ moisture conservation. These relatively low-cost changes in farm practices were within the limited adaptation capacity of farmers, which may be insufficient to deal with the impacts of future climate change. Anticipated climate change is expected to impose new

  17. Early Pliocene sediments and fossils from the northern Kenya Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Bishop, W W; Chapman, G R

    1970-06-01

    Mammalian fossils, which include the tooth of an early hominid, have been recovered from the newly mapped Ngorora Formation in the Baringo District. Preliminary dating suggests that this formation is aged between 9 and 12 million years, and the new finds thus help to span a ten million year gap in the fossil mammal record in Africa south of the Sahara. PMID:16057593

  18. Crustal heterogeneity and basement influence on the development of the Kenya Rift, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Martin; Mosley, Peter

    1993-01-01

    Structural and metamorphic studies within the exposed Precambrian basement in Kenya indicate that a number of heterogeneities exist within the lithosphere beneath the line of the Kenya Rift. Of these, the most important is the mechanical and thermal contrast between thick, cold, and rigid Archean lithosphere and thinner anisotropic Proterozoic mobile belt crust/lithosphere. Structural, geophysical, and heat flow data indicate that during a late Proterozoic collisional event the margin of the Tanzanian Archean craton was reworked, overthrust, and effectively buried by tectonically emplaced "Mozambique Belt" rocks. Its position now lies some 100 km east and northeast of the exposed outcrop. These variations in crust/lithosphere type may be directly correlated with the morphotectonic and structural framework of the Kenya Rift and in particular are reflected in the spatial patterns of Cenozoic volcanism within the Gregory Rift zone. Along the craton margin and within the mobile belt a series of late Proterozoic continental-scale NW-SE and N-S trending ductile/brittle shear zones are fundamental. The reactivation of these shear zones under varying stress field conditions is presented as a model to account for the patterns of rift subsidence, including the location and geometry of graben structures, and the intrusion of magmas since early Miocene times.

  19. Surface Wave Analysis of Regional Earthquakes in the Eastern Rift System (Africa)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliva, S. J. C.; Guidarelli, M.; Ebinger, C. J.; Roecker, S. W.; Tiberi, C.

    2015-12-01

    The Northern Tanzania Divergence (NTD), the youngest part of the East African Rift System, presents the opportunity to obtain insights about the birth and early stages of rifting before it progresses to mature rifting and seafloor spreading. This region is particularly interesting because the Eastern rift splits into three arms in this area and develops in a region of thick and cold lithosphere, amid the Archaean Tanzanian craton and the Proterozoic orogenic belt (the Masai block). We analyzed about two thousand seismic events recorded by the 39 broadband stations of the CRAFTI network during its two-year deployment in the NTD area in 2013 to 2014. We present the results of surface wave tomographic inversion obtained from fundamental-mode Rayleigh waves for short periods (between 4 to 14 seconds). Group velocity dispersion curves obtained via multiple filter analysis are path-averaged and inverted to produce 0.1º x 0.1º nodal grid tomographic maps for discrete periods using a 2D generalization of the Backus and Gilbert method. To quantify our results in terms of S-wave velocity structure the average group velocity dispersion curves are then inverted, using a linearized least-squares inversion scheme, in order to obtain the shear wave velocity structure for the upper 20 km of the crust. Low velocity anomalies are observed in the region 50 km south of Lake Natron, as well as in the area of the Ngorongoro crater. The implications of our results for the local tectonics and the development of the rifting system will be discussed in light of the growing geophysical database from this region.

  20. Seroepidemiological Study of Interepidemic Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection among Persons with Intense Ruminant Exposure in Madagascar and Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Gray, Gregory C.; Anderson, Benjamin D.; LaBeaud, A. Desirée; Heraud, Jean-Michel; Fèvre, Eric M.; Andriamandimby, Soa Fy; Cook, Elizabeth A. J.; Dahir, Saidi; de Glanville, William A.; Heil, Gary L.; Khan, Salah U.; Muiruri, Samuel; Olive, Marie-Marie; Thomas, Lian F.; Merrill, Hunter R.; Merrill, Mary L. M.; Richt, Juergen A.

    2015-01-01

    In this cross-sectional seroepidemiological study we sought to examine the evidence for circulation of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) among herders in Madagascar and Kenya. From July 2010 to June 2012, we enrolled 459 herders and 98 controls (without ruminant exposures) and studied their sera (immunoglobulin G [IgG] and IgM through enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay [ELISA] and plaque reduction neutralization test [PRNT] assays) for evidence of previous RVFV infection. Overall, 59 (12.9%) of 459 herders and 7 (7.1%) of the 98 controls were positive by the IgG ELISA assay. Of the 59 ELISA-positive herders, 23 (38.9%) were confirmed by the PRNT assay (21 from eastern Kenya). Two of the 21 PRNT-positive study subjects also had elevated IgM antibodies against RVFV suggesting recent infection. Multivariate modeling in this study revealed that being seminomadic (odds ratio [OR] = 6.4, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.1–15.4) was most strongly associated with antibodies against RVFV. Although we cannot know when these infections occurred, it seems likely that some interepidemic RVFV infections are occurring among herders. As there are disincentives regarding reporting RVFV outbreaks in livestock or wildlife, it may be prudent to conduct periodic, limited, active seroepidemiological surveillance for RVFV infections in herders, especially in eastern Kenya. PMID:26458775

  1. Dietary Fluoride Intake and Associated Skeletal and Dental Fluorosis in School Age Children in Rural Ethiopian Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Kebede, Aweke; Retta, Negussie; Abuye, Cherinet; Whiting, Susan J; Kassaw, Melkitu; Zeru, Tesfaye; Tessema, Masresha; Kjellevold, Marian

    2016-01-01

    An observational study was conducted to determine dietary fluoride intake, diet, and prevalence of dental and skeletal fluorosis of school age children in three fluorosis endemic districts of the Ethiopian Rift Valley having similar concentrations of fluoride (F) in drinking water (~5 mg F/L). The duplicate plate method was used to collect foods consumed by children over 24 h from 20 households in each community (n = 60) and the foods, along with water and beverages, were analyzed for fluoride (F) content. Prevalence of dental and skeletal fluorosis was determined using presence of clinical symptoms in children (n = 220). Daily dietary fluoride intake was at or above tolerable upper intake level (UL) of 10 mg F/day and the dietary sources (water, prepared food and beverages) all contributed to the daily fluoride burden. Urinary fluoride in children from Fentale and Adamitulu was almost twice (>5 mg/L) the concentration found in urine from children from Alaba, where rain water harvesting was most common. Severe and moderate dental fluorosis was found in Alaba and Adamitulu, the highest severity and prevalence being in the latter district where staple foods were lowest in calcium. Children in all three areas showed evidence of both skeletal and non-skeletal fluorosis. Our data support the hypothesis that intake of calcium rich foods in addition to using rain water for household consumption and preparation of food, may help in reducing risk of fluorosis in Ethiopia, but prospective studies are needed. PMID:27472351

  2. A single vaccination with an improved nonspreading Rift Valley fever virus vaccine provides sterile immunity in lambs.

    PubMed

    Oreshkova, Nadia; van Keulen, Lucien; Kant, Jet; Moormann, Rob J M; Kortekaas, Jeroen

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an important pathogen that affects ruminants and humans. Recently we developed a vaccine based on nonspreading RVFV (NSR) and showed that a single vaccination with this vaccine protects lambs from viremia and clinical signs. However, low levels of viral RNA were detected in the blood of vaccinated lambs shortly after challenge infection. These low levels of virus, when present in a pregnant ewe, could potentially infect the highly susceptible fetus. We therefore aimed to further improve the efficacy of the NSR vaccine. Here we report the expression of Gn, the major immunogenic protein of the virus, from the NSR genome. The resulting NSR-Gn vaccine was shown to elicit superior CD8 and CD4-restricted memory responses and improved virus neutralization titers in mice. A dose titration study in lambs revealed that the highest vaccination dose of 10(6.3) TCID50/ml protected all lambs from clinical signs and viremia. The lambs developed neutralizing antibodies within three weeks after vaccination and no anamnestic responses were observed following challenge. The combined results suggest that sterile immunity was achieved by a single vaccination with the NSR-Gn vaccine.

  3. Post-Exposure Vaccination with MP-12 Lacking NSs Protects Mice Against Lethal Rift Valley Fever Virus Challenge

    PubMed Central

    Gowen, Brian B.; Bailey, Kevin W.; Scharton, Dionna; Vest, Zachery; Westover, Jonna B.; Skirpstunas, Ramona; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes severe disease in humans and livestock. There are currently no approved antivirals or vaccines for the treatment or prevention of RVF disease in humans. A major virulence factor of RVFV is the NSs protein, which inhibits host transcription including the interferon (IFN)-β gene and promotes the degradation of dsRNA-dependent protein kinase, PKR. We analyzed the efficacy of the live-attenuated MP-12 vaccine strain and MP-12 variants that lack the NSs protein as post-exposure vaccinations. Although parental MP-12 failed to elicit a protective effect in mice challenged with wild-type (wt) RVFV by the intranasal route, significant protection was demonstrated by vaccination with MP-12 strains lacking NSs when they were administered at 20 to 30 min post-exposure. Viremia and virus replication in liver, spleen and brain were also inhibited by post-exposure vaccination with MP-12 lacking NSs. The protective effect was mostly lost when vaccination was delayed 6 or 24 h after intranasal RVFV challenge. When mice were challenged subcutaneously, efficacy of MP-12 lacking NSs was diminished, most likely due to more rapid dissemination of wt RVFV. Our findings suggest that post-exposure vaccination with MP-12 lacking NSs may be developed as a novel post-exposure treatment to prevent RVF. PMID:23523764

  4. Dietary Fluoride Intake and Associated Skeletal and Dental Fluorosis in School Age Children in Rural Ethiopian Rift Valley

    PubMed Central

    Kebede, Aweke; Retta, Negussie; Abuye, Cherinet; Whiting, Susan J.; Kassaw, Melkitu; Zeru, Tesfaye; Tessema, Masresha; Kjellevold, Marian

    2016-01-01

    An observational study was conducted to determine dietary fluoride intake, diet, and prevalence of dental and skeletal fluorosis of school age children in three fluorosis endemic districts of the Ethiopian Rift Valley having similar concentrations of fluoride (F) in drinking water (~5 mg F/L). The duplicate plate method was used to collect foods consumed by children over 24 h from 20 households in each community (n = 60) and the foods, along with water and beverages, were analyzed for fluoride (F) content. Prevalence of dental and skeletal fluorosis was determined using presence of clinical symptoms in children (n = 220). Daily dietary fluoride intake was at or above tolerable upper intake level (UL) of 10 mg F/day and the dietary sources (water, prepared food and beverages) all contributed to the daily fluoride burden. Urinary fluoride in children from Fentale and Adamitulu was almost twice (>5 mg/L) the concentration found in urine from children from Alaba, where rain water harvesting was most common. Severe and moderate dental fluorosis was found in Alaba and Adamitulu, the highest severity and prevalence being in the latter district where staple foods were lowest in calcium. Children in all three areas showed evidence of both skeletal and non-skeletal fluorosis. Our data support the hypothesis that intake of calcium rich foods in addition to using rain water for household consumption and preparation of food, may help in reducing risk of fluorosis in Ethiopia, but prospective studies are needed. PMID:27472351

  5. Detection and identification of Rift Valley fever virus in mosquito vectors by quantitative real-time PCR.

    PubMed

    Mwaengo, D; Lorenzo, G; Iglesias, J; Warigia, M; Sang, R; Bishop, R P; Brun, A

    2012-10-01

    Diagnostic methods allowing for rapid identification of pathogens are crucial for controlling and preventing dissemination after disease outbreaks as well as for use in surveillance programs. For arboviruses, detection of the presence of virus in their arthropod hosts is important for monitoring of viral activity and quantitative information is useful for modeling of transmission dynamics. In this study, molecular detection of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in mosquito samples from the 2006 to 2007 East African outbreaks was performed using quantitative real-time PCR assay (qRT-PCR). Specific RVFV sequence-based primer/fluorogenic (TaqMan) probe sets were derived from the L and S RNA segments of the virus. Both primer-probe L and S segment-based combinations detected genomic RVFV sequences, with generally comparable levels of sensitivity. Viral loads from three mosquito species, Aedes mcintoshi, Aedes ochraceus and Mansonia uniformis were estimated and significant differences of between 5- and 1000-fold were detected between Ae. mcintoshi and M. uniformis using both the L and S primer-probe-based assays. The genetic relationships of the viral sequences in mosquito samples were established by partial M segment sequencing and assigned to the two previously described viral lineages defined by analysis of livestock isolates obtained during the 2006-2007 outbreak, confirming that similar viruses were present in both the vector and mammalian host. The data confirms the utility of qRT-PCR for identification and initial quantification of virus in mosquito samples during RVFV outbreaks.

  6. Can environmental and socioeconomic factors explain the recent emergence of Rift Valley fever in Yemen, 2000-2001?

    PubMed

    Abdo-Salem, Shaif; Tran, Annelise; Grosbois, Vladimir; Gerbier, Guillaume; Al-Qadasi, Mansoor; Saeed, Khalid; Etter, Eric; Thiry, Etienne; Roger, François; Chevalier, Véronique

    2011-06-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a major vector-borne zoonosis first identified on the African continent in the early 1900s. In 2000, RVF was reported for the first time in Yemen. In this study, we provide a descriptive analysis of the period 1999-2007 in Yemen, taking into account the environmental and socioeconomic factors likely to have been involved in the emergence of RVF in the country. We characterize each year in the study period by the environmental conditions (linked to vegetation indexes), the festival calendar, and economic data. We then use a principal component analysis to synthesize the different variables, assess whether the year 2000 was atypical compared with other years in the study period, and, if that was the case, in what respect. Our results show that 2000 presented above-normal vegetation index values, which reflect important precipitation, for both the two rainy seasons (the first between March and May; the second between July and October). These environmental conditions, ones favorable to mosquito vector populations, coincided that year with a late (March) starting date of the Eid al-Kabeer festival, which corresponds to a period with high host (cattle, sheep, goats) densities. According to these criteria, 2000 was an atypical year. These conclusions suggest that it is important to consider social variables in addition to environmental ones when assessing the risk of RVF emergence.

  7. Dietary Fluoride Intake and Associated Skeletal and Dental Fluorosis in School Age Children in Rural Ethiopian Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Kebede, Aweke; Retta, Negussie; Abuye, Cherinet; Whiting, Susan J; Kassaw, Melkitu; Zeru, Tesfaye; Tessema, Masresha; Kjellevold, Marian

    2016-07-26

    An observational study was conducted to determine dietary fluoride intake, diet, and prevalence of dental and skeletal fluorosis of school age children in three fluorosis endemic districts of the Ethiopian Rift Valley having similar concentrations of fluoride (F) in drinking water (~5 mg F/L). The duplicate plate method was used to collect foods consumed by children over 24 h from 20 households in each community (n = 60) and the foods, along with water and beverages, were analyzed for fluoride (F) content. Prevalence of dental and skeletal fluorosis was determined using presence of clinical symptoms in children (n = 220). Daily dietary fluoride intake was at or above tolerable upper intake level (UL) of 10 mg F/day and the dietary sources (water, prepared food and beverages) all contributed to the daily fluoride burden. Urinary fluoride in children from Fentale and Adamitulu was almost twice (>5 mg/L) the concentration found in urine from children from Alaba, where rain water harvesting was most common. Severe and moderate dental fluorosis was found in Alaba and Adamitulu, the highest severity and prevalence being in the latter district where staple foods were lowest in calcium. Children in all three areas showed evidence of both skeletal and non-skeletal fluorosis. Our data support the hypothesis that intake of calcium rich foods in addition to using rain water for household consumption and preparation of food, may help in reducing risk of fluorosis in Ethiopia, but prospective studies are needed.

  8. The risk of Rift Valley fever virus introduction and establishment in the United States and European Union.

    PubMed

    Rolin, Alicia I; Berrang-Ford, Lea; Kulkarni, Manisha A

    2013-12-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arthropod-borne disease resulting in severe morbidity and mortality in both human and ruminant populations. First identified in Kenya in 1930, the geographical range of RVFV has been largely constrained to the African continent, yet has recently spread to new regions, and is identified as a priority disease with potential for geographic emergence. We present a systematic literature review assessing the potential for RVFV introduction and establishment in the United States (US) and European Union (EU). Viable pathways for the introduction of RVFV include: transport of virus-carrying vectors, importation of viremic hosts and intentional entry of RVFV as a biological weapon. It is generally assumed that the risk of RVFV introduction into the US or EU is low. We argue that the risk of sporadic introduction is likely high, though currently an insufficient proportion of such introductions coincide with optimal environmental conditions. Future global trends may increase the likelihood of risk factors for RVFV spread.

  9. Climate impacts on environmental risks evaluated from space: a conceptual approach to the case of Rift Valley Fever in Senegal

    PubMed Central

    Tourre, Yves M.; Lacaux, Jean-Pierre; Vignolles, Cécile; Lafaye, Murielle

    2009-01-01

    Background Climate and environment vary across many spatio-temporal scales, including the concept of climate change, which impact on ecosystems, vector-borne diseases and public health worldwide. Objectives To develop a conceptual approach by mapping climatic and environmental conditions from space and studying their linkages with Rift Valley Fever (RVF) epidemics in Senegal. Design Ponds in which mosquitoes could thrive were identified from remote sensing using high-resolution SPOT-5 satellite images. Additional data on pond dynamics and rainfall events (obtained from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission) were combined with hydrological in-situ data. Localisation of vulnerable hosts such as penned cattle (from QuickBird satellite) were also used. Results Dynamic spatio-temporal distribution of Aedes vexans density (one of the main RVF vectors) is based on the total rainfall amount and ponds’ dynamics. While Zones Potentially Occupied by Mosquitoes are mapped, detailed risk areas, i.e. zones where hazards and vulnerability occur, are expressed in percentages of areas where cattle are potentially exposed to mosquitoes’ bites. Conclusions This new conceptual approach, using precise remote-sensing techniques, simply relies upon rainfall distribution also evaluated from space. It is meant to contribute to the implementation of operational early warning systems for RVF based on both natural and anthropogenic climatic and environmental changes. In a climate change context, this approach could also be applied to other vector-borne diseases and places worldwide. PMID:20052381

  10. [Assessment of the risk of introduction to Tunisia of the Rift Valley fever virus by the mosquito Culex pipiens].

    PubMed

    Krida, G; Diancourt, L; Bouattour, A; Rhim, A; Chermiti, B; Failloux, A-B

    2011-10-01

    The mosquito Culex pipiens has been involved as vector of the West Nile virus in Tunisia. Its bio-ecological characteristics in combination with some environmental factors have favoured the emergence of this virus in a West-Nile free zone. This leads to question about the potential risk of introducing another arbovirus, the Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus, in Tunisia from neighbouring countries where RVF circulates. In this study, we have evaluated the vector competence of different populations of Cx. pipiens towards two strains of RVF virus, the virulent ZH548 and the avirulent Clone 13 by experimental infections and the genetic differentiation of these populations of Cx. pipiens using four microsatellite loci. We found disseminated infection rates ranging from 0% to 14.7% and a high genetic differentiation among populations without any geographical pattern (no isolation by distance). Thus, although Cx. pipiens is able to sustain an amplification of RVF virus, viral dissemination through mosquito dispersal would be unlikely. However, as RVF is an emerging disease transmitted by several other potential mosquito species (e.g. Ochlerotatus caspius), attention should be maintained to survey livestock and mosquitoes in Tunisia.

  11. High paleointensities of the geomagnetic field from thermomagnetic studies on rift valley pillow basalts from the Mid- Atlantic Ridge.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Prevot, M.; Mankinen, E.A.; Gromme, S.; Lecaille, A.

    1983-01-01

    Nineteen pillow basalts dredged within the rift valley of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge at 36.8oN were studied by the Thellier stepwise heating method in order to determine the paleointensity of the geomagnetic field when they erupted on to the sea floor. Previously reported fission track ages are 2000-6000 yr for the youngest rocks (mainly olivine basalts) and 10 000-100 000 yr for the others (mainly plagioclase basalts and pyroxene basalts). All but three pillow basalts meet the conditions commonly considered as indicative of quite reliable paleointensity estimates; stability of the direction of NRM during its thermal demagnetization, constant ratio of NRM/TRM (natural remanent magnetization to thermoremanent magnetization) over 50% or more of the original NRM intensity (80 to 94% for 11 specimens), and reproducibility of low-temperature partial TRM(PTRM). However, strong field thermomagnetic measurements indicate that 11 of these 16 samples display a significant increase in Curie temperature (15 to 80oC) during the paleointensity experiments below 250oC, notwithstanding the linearity of the NRM-TRM plot in this temperature interval. This alteration, probably due to low-temperature oxidation of the specimens, seems typical of young pillow basalts and may result in paleointensity estimates which are too high.-from Authors

  12. Rift Valley fever in a zone potentially occupied by Aedes vexans in Senegal: dynamics and risk mapping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tourre, Y. M.; Vignolles, C.; Lacaux, J.-P.; Bigeard, G.; Ndione, J.-A.; Lafaye, M.

    2009-09-01

    This paper presents an analysis of the interaction between the various variables associated with Rift Valley fever (RVF) such as the mosquito vector, available hosts and rainfall distribution. To that end, the varying zones potentially occupied by mosquitoes (ZPOM), rainfall events and pond dynamics, and the associated exposure of hosts to the RVF virus by Aedes vexans, were analyzed in the Barkedji area of the Ferlo, Senegal, during the 2003 rainy season. Ponds were identified by remote sensing using a high-resolution SPOT-5 satellite image. Additional data on ponds and rainfall events from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission were combined with in-situ entomological and limnimetric measurements, and the localization of vulnerable ruminant hosts (data derived from QuickBird satellite). Since "Ae. vexans productive events” are dependent on the timing of rainfall for their embryogenesis (six days without rain are necessary to trigger hatching), the dynamic spatio-temporal distribution of Ae. vexans density was based on the total rainfall amount and pond dynamics. Detailed ZPOM mapping was obtained on a daily basis and combined with aggressiveness temporal profiles. Risks zones, i.e. zones where hazards and vulnerability are combined, are expressed by the percentages of parks where animals are potentially exposed to mosquito bites. This new approach, simply relying upon rainfall distribution evaluated from space, is meant to contribute to the implementation of a new, operational early warning system for RVF based on environmental risks linked to climatic and environmental conditions.

  13. Neotectonic faults and stress field in the East African Rift System around the Tanzanian Craton - A contribution to the seismotectonic map of Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delvaux, Damien; Macheyeki, Athanas Simon; Fernandes, Rui-Manuel; Ayele, Atalay; Meghraoui, Mustapha

    2015-04-01

    As a contribution to the UNESCO-IUGS IGCP 601 project "Seismotectonics and seismic hazards in Africa" and in preparation of the Seismotectonic Map of Africa, we compiled the neotectonic faults related to the East African Rift System around the Tanzanian craton. The initial aim was to identify and map the potentially active faults. Faults are usually defined as active when they show seismogenic displacement during the last 10,000 to 100,000 years, generally on the basis of paleoseismic investigation. In East Africa, however, very few faults have been studied by paleoseismic techniques and even fewer have known historical seismic activation. To address this issue, we mapped faults that show morphological indications of displacement. We used the SRTM DTM (90 and 30 m when available to us), with artificial shading as basis for identify neotectonic faults, in combination with existing data from geological maps, publications and reports, complemented by our own field observations. Thermal springs often occur along tectonically active faults. We use them to distinguish present-day faulting from other mapped faults as they are in most cases structurally controlled. In parallel, we used also the available focal mechanisms and geological fault-slip data to constrain the stress second-order stress field (at the scale of rift segments) and locally also the third-order stress field (at the local scale). All these elements are combined and compared with existing kinematic models for the East African Rift based on earthquake slip vectors, GPS measurements and geologic indicators. The comparison evidences some local discrepancies between the stress field and the direction of opening, probably due to the interactions between different rift segments, as in the Rukwa rift, Mbeya southern junction between the eastern and western rift branches, and in the Manyara-Natron area.

  14. Integrated Analysis of Environment, Cattle and Human Serological Data: Risks and Mechanisms of Transmission of Rift Valley Fever in Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    Olive, Marie-Marie; Chevalier, Véronique; Grosbois, Vladimir; Tran, Annelise; Andriamandimby, Soa-Fy; Durand, Benoit; Ravalohery, Jean-Pierre; Andriamamonjy, Seta; Rakotomanana, Fanjasoa; Rogier, Christophe; Heraud, Jean-Michel

    2016-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a vector-borne disease affecting ruminants and humans. Madagascar was heavily affected by RVF in 2008–2009, with evidence of a large and heterogeneous spread of the disease. The identification of at-risk environments is essential to optimize the available resources by targeting RVF surveillance in Madagascar. Herein, the objectives of our study were: (i) to identify the environmental factors and areas favorable to RVF transmission to both cattle and human and (ii) to identify human behaviors favoring human infections in Malagasy contexts. Methodology/Principal Findings First, we characterized the environments of Malagasy communes using a Multiple Factor Analysis (MFA). Then, we analyzed cattle and human serological data collected at national level using Generalized Linear Mixed Models, with the individual serological status (cattle or human) as the response, and MFA factors, as well as other potential risk factors (cattle density, human behavior) as explanatory variables. Cattle and human seroprevalence rates were positively associated to humid environments (p<0.001). Areas with high cattle density were at risk (p<0.01; OR = 2.6). Furthermore, our analysis showed that frequent contact with raw milk contributed to explain human infection (OR = 1.6). Finally, our study highlighted the eastern-coast, western and north-western parts as high-risk areas for RVF transmission in cattle. Conclusions/Significance Our integrated approach analyzing environmental, cattle and human datasets allow us to bring new insight on RVF transmission patterns in Madagascar. The association between cattle seroprevalence, humid environments and high cattle density suggests that concomitant vectorial and direct transmissions are critical to maintain RVF enzootic transmission. Additionally, in the at-risk humid environment of the western, north-western and the eastern-coast areas, suitable to Culex and Anopheles mosquitoes, vectorial transmission

  15. Simulation Modelling of Population Dynamics of Mosquito Vectors for Rift Valley Fever Virus in a Disease Epidemic Setting

    PubMed Central

    Mweya, Clement N.; Holst, Niels; Mboera, Leonard E. G.; Kimera, Sharadhuli I.

    2014-01-01

    Background Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is weather dependent arboviral infection of livestock and humans. Population dynamics of mosquito vectors is associated with disease epidemics. In our study, we use daily temperature and rainfall as model inputs to simulate dynamics of mosquito vectors population in relation to disease epidemics. Methods/Findings Time-varying distributed delays (TVDD) and multi-way functional response equations were implemented to simulate mosquito vectors and hosts developmental stages and to establish interactions between stages and phases of mosquito vectors in relation to vertebrate hosts for infection introduction in compartmental phases. An open-source modelling platforms, Universal Simulator and Qt integrated development environment were used to develop models in C++ programming language. Developed models include source codes for mosquito fecundity, host fecundity, water level, mosquito infection, host infection, interactions, and egg time. Extensible Markup Language (XML) files were used as recipes to integrate source codes in Qt creator with Universal Simulator plug-in. We observed that Floodwater Aedines and Culicine population continued to fluctuate with temperature and water level over simulation period while controlled by availability of host for blood feeding. Infection in the system was introduced by floodwater Aedines. Culicines pick infection from infected host once to amplify disease epidemic. Simulated mosquito population show sudden unusual increase between December 1997 and January 1998 a similar period when RVF outbreak occurred in Ngorongoro district. Conclusion/Significance Findings presented here provide new opportunities for weather-driven RVF epidemic simulation modelling. This is an ideal approach for understanding disease transmission dynamics towards epidemics prediction, prevention and control. This approach can be used as an alternative source for generation of calibrated RVF epidemics data in different settings

  16. Identifying landscape features associated with Rift Valley fever virus transmission, Ferlo region, Senegal, using very high spatial resolution satellite imagery

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Dynamics of most of vector-borne diseases are strongly linked to global and local environmental changes. Landscape changes are indicators of human activities or natural processes that are likely to modify the ecology of the diseases. Here, a landscape approach developed at a local scale is proposed for extracting mosquito favourable biotopes, and for testing ecological parameters when identifying risk areas of Rift Valley fever (RVF) transmission. The study was carried out around Barkedji village, Ferlo region, Senegal. Methods In order to test whether pond characteristics may influence the density and the dispersal behaviour of RVF vectors, and thus the spatial variation in RVFV transmission, we used a very high spatial resolution remote sensing image (2.4 m resolution) provided by the Quickbird sensor to produce a detailed land-cover map of the study area. Based on knowledge of vector and disease ecology, seven landscape attributes were defined at the pond level and computed from the land-cover map. Then, the relationships between landscape attributes and RVF serologic incidence rates in small ruminants were analyzed through a beta-binomial regression. Finally, the best statistical model according to the Akaike Information Criterion corrected for small samples (AICC), was used to map areas at risk for RVF. Results Among the derived landscape variables, the vegetation density index (VDI) computed within a 500 m buffer around ponds was positively correlated with serologic incidence (p<0.001), suggesting that the risk of RVF transmission was higher in the vicinity of ponds surrounded by a dense vegetation cover. The final risk map of RVF transmission displays a heterogeneous spatial distribution, corroborating previous findings from the same area. Conclusions Our results highlight the potential of very high spatial resolution remote sensing data for identifying environmental risk factors and mapping RVF risk areas at a local scale. PMID:23452759

  17. Inter-epidemic abundance and distribution of potential mosquito vectors for Rift Valley fever virus in Ngorongoro district, Tanzania

    PubMed Central

    Mweya, Clement N.; Kimera, Sharadhuli I.; Mellau, Lesakit S. B.; Mboera, Leonard E. G.

    2015-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis that primarily affects ruminants but also has the capacity to infect humans. Objective To determine the abundance and distribution of mosquito vectors in relation to their potential role in the virus transmission and maintenance in disease epidemic areas of Ngorongoro district in northern Tanzania. Methods A cross-sectional entomological investigation was carried out before the suspected RVF outbreak in October 2012. Mosquitoes were sampled both outdoors and indoors using the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) light traps and Mosquito Magnets baited with attractants. Outdoor traps were placed in proximity with breeding sites and under canopy in banana plantations close to the sleeping places of animals. Results A total of 1,823 mosquitoes were collected, of which 87% (N=1,588) were Culex pipiens complex, 12% (N=226) Aedes aegypti, and 0.5% (N=9) Anopheles species. About two-thirds (67%; N=1,095) of C. pipiens complex and nearly 100% (N=225) of A. aegypti were trapped outdoors using Mosquito Magnets. All Anopheles species were trapped indoors using CDC light traps. There were variations in abundance of C. pipiens complex and A. aegypti among different ecological and vegetation habitats. Over three quarters (78%) of C. pipiens complex and most (85%) of the A. aegypti were trapped in banana and maize farms. Both C. pipiens complex and A. aegypti were more abundant in proximity with cattle and in semi-arid thorn bushes and lower Afro-montane. The highest number of mosquitoes was recorded in villages that were most affected during the RVF epidemic of 2007. Of the tested 150 pools of C. pipiens complex and 45 pools of A. aegypti, none was infected with RVF virus. Conclusions These results provide insights into unique habitat characterisation relating to mosquito abundances and distribution in RVF epidemic-prone areas of Ngorongoro district in northern Tanzania. PMID:25613346

  18. A Systematic Scoping Study of the Socio-Economic Impact of Rift Valley Fever: Research Gaps and Needs.

    PubMed

    Peyre, M; Chevalier, V; Abdo-Salem, S; Velthuis, A; Antoine-Moussiaux, N; Thiry, E; Roger, F

    2015-08-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a severe mosquito-borne disease affecting humans and domestic ruminants. RVF virus has been reported in most African countries, as well as in the Arabic Peninsula. This paper reviews the different types of socio-economic impact induced by RVF disease and the attempts to evaluate them. Of the 52 papers selected for this review, 13 types of socio-economic impact were identified according to the sector impacted, the level and temporal scale of the impact. RVF has a dramatic impact on producers and livestock industries, affecting public and animal health, food security and the livelihood of the pastoralist communities. RVF also has an impact on international trade and other agro-industries. The risk of introducing RVF into disease-free countries via the importation of an infected animal or mosquito is real, and the consequent restriction of access to export markets may induce dramatic economic consequences for national and local economies. Despite the important threat of RVF, few studies have been conducted to assess the socio-economic impact of the disease. The 17 studies identified for quantitative analysis in this review relied only on partial cost analysis, with limited reference to mid- and long-term impact, public health or risk mitigation measures. However, the estimated impacts were high (ranging from $5 to $470 million USD losses). To reduce the impact of RVF, early detection and rapid response should be implemented. Comprehensive disease impact studies are required to provide decision-makers with science-based information on the best intervention measure to implement ensuring efficient resource allocation. Through the analysis of RVF socio-economic impact, this scoping study proposes insights into the mechanisms underpinning its often-underestimated importance. This study highlights the need for comparative socio-economic studies to help decision-makers with their choices related to RVF disease management. PMID:25256804

  19. Mechanistic Insight into the Host Transcription Inhibition Function of Rift Valley Fever Virus NSs and Its Importance in Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Terasaki, Kaori; Ramirez, Sydney I.; Makino, Shinji

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a member of the genus Phlebovirus within the family Bunyaviridae, causes periodic outbreaks in livestocks and humans in countries of the African continent and Middle East. RVFV NSs protein, a nonstructural protein, is a major virulence factor that exhibits several important biological properties. These include suppression of general transcription, inhibition of IFN-β promoter induction and degradation of double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase R. Although each of these biological functions of NSs are considered important for countering the antiviral response in the host, the individual contributions of these functions towards RVFV virulence remains unclear. To examine this, we generated two RVFV MP-12 strain-derived mutant viruses. Each carried mutations in NSs that specifically targeted its general transcription inhibition function without affecting its ability to degrade PKR and inhibit IFN-β promoter induction, through its interaction with Sin3-associated protein 30, a part of the repressor complex at the IFN-β promoter. Using these mutant viruses, we have dissected the transcription inhibition function of NSs and examined its importance in RVFV virulence. Both NSs mutant viruses exhibited a differentially impaired ability to inhibit host transcription when compared with MP-12. It has been reported that NSs suppresses general transcription by interfering with the formation of the transcription factor IIH complex, through the degradation of the p62 subunit and sequestration of the p44 subunit. Our study results lead us to suggest that the ability of NSs to induce p62 degradation is the major contributor to its general transcription inhibition property, whereas its interaction with p44 may not play a significant role in this function. Importantly, RVFV MP-12-NSs mutant viruses with an impaired general transcription inhibition function showed a reduced cytotoxicity in cell culture and attenuated virulence in young mice

  20. Cytokine response in mouse bone marrow derived macrophages after infection with pathogenic and non-pathogenic Rift Valley fever virus

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Kimberly K.; Hill, Terence E.; Davis, Melissa N.; Holbrook, Michael R.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is the most pathogenic member of the genus Phlebovirus within the family Bunyaviridae, and can cause severe disease in humans and livestock. Until recently, limited information has been published on the cellular host response elicited by RVFV, particularly in macrophages and dendritic cells, which play critical roles in stimulating adaptive and innate immune responses to viral infection. In an effort to define the initial response of host immunomodulatory cells to infection, primary mouse bone marrow derived macrophages (BMDM) were infected with the pathogenic RVFV strain ZH501, or attenuated strains MP-12 or MP-12 based Clone13 type (rMP12-C13 type), and cytokine secretion profiles examined. The secretion of T helper (Th)1-associated antiviral cytokines, chemokines and various interleukins increased rapidly after infection with the attenuated rMP12-C13 type RVFV, which lacks a functional NSs virulence gene. In comparison, infection with live-attenuated MP-12 encoding a functional NSs gene appeared to cause a delayed immune response, while pathogenic ZH501 ablates the immune response almost entirely. These data demonstrate that NSs can inhibit components of the BMDM antiviral response and supports previous work indicating that NSs can specifically regulate the type I interferon response in macrophages. Furthermore, our data demonstrate that genetic differences between ZH501 and MP-12 reduce the ability of MP-12 to inhibit antiviral signalling and subsequently reduce virulence in BMDM, demonstrating that viral components other than NSs play a critical role in regulating the host response to RVFV infection. PMID:25759029

  1. Spatial Heterogeneity of Habitat Suitability for Rift Valley Fever Occurrence in Tanzania: An Ecological Niche Modelling Approach

    PubMed Central

    Sindato, Calvin; Stevens, Kim B.; Karimuribo, Esron D.; Mboera, Leonard E. G.; Paweska, Janusz T.; Pfeiffer, Dirk U.

    2016-01-01

    Background Despite the long history of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in Tanzania, extent of its suitable habitat in the country remains unclear. In this study we investigated potential effects of temperature, precipitation, elevation, soil type, livestock density, rainfall pattern, proximity to wild animals, protected areas and forest on the habitat suitability for RVF occurrence in Tanzania. Materials and Methods Presence-only records of 193 RVF outbreak locations from 1930 to 2007 together with potential predictor variables were used to model and map the suitable habitats for RVF occurrence using ecological niche modelling. Ground-truthing of the model outputs was conducted by comparing the levels of RVF virus specific antibodies in cattle, sheep and goats sampled from locations in Tanzania that presented different predicted habitat suitability values. Principal Findings Habitat suitability values for RVF occurrence were higher in the northern and central-eastern regions of Tanzania than the rest of the regions in the country. Soil type and precipitation of the wettest quarter contributed equally to habitat suitability (32.4% each), followed by livestock density (25.9%) and rainfall pattern (9.3%). Ground-truthing of model outputs revealed that the odds of an animal being seropositive for RVFV when sampled from areas predicted to be most suitable for RVF occurrence were twice the odds of an animal sampled from areas least suitable for RVF occurrence (95% CI: 1.43, 2.76, p < 0.001). Conclusion/Significance The regions in the northern and central-eastern Tanzania were more suitable for RVF occurrence than the rest of the regions in the country. The modelled suitable habitat is characterised by impermeable soils, moderate precipitation in the wettest quarter, high livestock density and a bimodal rainfall pattern. The findings of this study should provide guidance for the design of appropriate RVF surveillance, prevention and control strategies which target areas with

  2. Development and characterization of a Rift Valley fever virus cell-cell fusion assay using alphavirus replicon vectors

    SciTech Connect

    Filone, Claire Marie; Heise, Mark; Doms, Robert W. . E-mail: doms@mail.med.upenn.edu; Bertolotti-Ciarlet, Andrea . E-mail: aciarlet@mail.med.upenn.edu

    2006-12-20

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a member of the Phlebovirus genus in the Bunyaviridae family, is transmitted by mosquitoes and infects both humans and domestic animals, particularly cattle and sheep. Since primary RVFV strains must be handled in BSL-3+ or BSL-4 facilities, a RVFV cell-cell fusion assay will facilitate the investigation of RVFV glycoprotein function under BSL-2 conditions. As for other members of the Bunyaviridae family, RVFV glycoproteins are targeted to the Golgi, where the virus buds, and are not efficiently delivered to the cell surface. However, overexpression of RVFV glycoproteins using an alphavirus replicon vector resulted in the expression of the glycoproteins on the surface of multiple cell types. Brief treatment of RVFV glycoprotein expressing cells with mildly acidic media (pH 6.2 and below) resulted in rapid and efficient syncytia formation, which we quantified by {beta}-galactosidase {alpha}-complementation. Fusion was observed with several cell types, suggesting that the receptor(s) for RVFV is widely expressed or that this acid-dependent virus does not require a specific receptor to mediate cell-cell fusion. Fusion occurred over a broad temperature range, as expected for a virus with both mosquito and mammalian hosts. In contrast to cell fusion mediated by the VSV-G glycoprotein, RVFV glycoprotein-dependent cell fusion could be prevented by treating target cells with trypsin, indicating that one or more proteins (or protein-associated carbohydrate) on the host cell surface are needed to support membrane fusion. The cell-cell fusion assay reported here will make it possible to study the membrane fusion activity of RVFV glycoproteins in a high-throughput format and to screen small molecule inhibitors for the ability to block virus-specific membrane fusion.

  3. Geologic and structural characters of Liaohe fault depression--Rich in oil and gas rift valley in northeastern China

    SciTech Connect

    Quanmao Chen )

    1992-01-01

    Liaohe fault depression is famous for its first class in per square kilometer oil reserves and yield, and the third level in output in China. It lies in the north part of Bo Sea and Liaoning province with about 12,400 km[sup 2] in onshore area. The basement consisted of metamorphic rocks, covered by upper Jurassic-lower Cretaceous red clastic formation intercalated by a coal system stratum (1,600 m), Eogene dark mudstone and sand-conglomeratic rock formation with 1,200m source bed (about 7,000m), and Neogene-Quaternary motley sand-mudstone formation (more than 1,000m). Fourteen sets of oil-bearing strata exist in the basement and overburdens. Liaohe depression is characterized by a horst and graben system. The features are as follows: (1) bulge and sag alternate within depression; (2) the shape of depression and the undulation of basement are the mirror image of Moho; (3) the magnificent Tanlu strike-slip fault system runs through the middle Liaohe area, the faults are almost normal faults with some strike-slip natures; (4) alkaline volcanics erupted many times from later Mesozoic to Cenozoic; (5) high heat flux, the average value is 2.24 HFU, the geothermal gradient is 4 C/100m in Eogene; (6) seismic activity was frequent, according to statistics, before the Haicheng earthquake which was of 7.3 magnitude in 1975, there were 257 shocks lower than 4.7 magnitude; (7) the extensional rate of rift valley is about 20%; (8) trap is related to compacting anticline, rollover anticline, pinching sandstone, onlap strata, confined fault block, stratigraphic unconformity, diapiric mudstone dome and buried hills.

  4. Seroprevalence of Rift Valley fever, Q fever, and brucellosis in ruminants on the southeastern shore of Lake Chad.

    PubMed

    Abakar, Mahamat Fayiz; Naré, Ngandolo B; Schelling, Esther; Hattendorf, Jan; Alfaroukh, Idriss O; Zinsstag, Jakob

    2014-10-01

    The seroprevalence of Rift Valley fever (RVF), brucellosis, and Q fever among domestic ruminants on the southeastern shore of Lake Chad was studied. The study area consisted of two parts, including mainland and islands. On the mainland, the study was conducted in nine randomly selected villages and camps. On the islands, samples were collected from all four available sites. A total of 985 serum samples were collected and 924 were analyzed using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for RVF. A total of 561 samples collected from islands were analyzed using ELISA for Q fever and both ELISA and Rose Bengal tests (RBT) for brucellosis. The apparent RVF seroprevalence by species was 37.8% (95% confidence interval [CI] 34.2-41.3) in cattle, 18.8% (95% CI 12.3-25.2) in goats, and 10.8% (95% CI 3.0-18.5) in sheep. For brucellosis and Q fever, only cattle samples from islands were analyzed. For Q fever, the apparent seroprevalence was 7.8% (95% CI 5.6-10.1). For brucellosis, the RBT showed a prevalence of 5.7% (95% CI 3.8-7.6), and ELISA showed 11.9% (95% CI 9.3-14.6) with a kappa value of 0.53 showing a moderate agreement between the two tests. This study confirms the presence of the three diseases in the study area. More research is required to assess the importance for public health and conservation of the Kouri cattle breed.

  5. Volcanic episodicity and a non-steady state rift valley along northeast Pacific Spreading Centers: Evidence from Sea MARCI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    appel, Ellen S.; Ryan, William B. F.

    1986-12-01

    Sea MARCI side-looking sonar images and Sea Beam bathymetry along a 400-km stretch of the Juan de Fuca Ridge crest provide evidence that excessive extrusive volcanism periodically builds a crestal ridge along the axis of seafloor spreading. An elongate summit depression (ESD), or rift valley, is commonly observed in the spine of this crestal ridge. The crestal ridge volcanic landform has a distinctive shape that is recognized in bathymetric contours both along the spreading axis and at least up to 30 km away from the axis. The landform has a plan-form shape that resembles a side view of an archer's bow with the long dimension of the bow form parallel to the strike of the ridge. In cross section, the bow form is flat on top and has steep flanks. These bow-form shapes can be explained by magma that rises into the crust at a discrete center and flows laterally into belts of ridge-parallel diskes, similar to Icelandic fissure eruptions. Both the variable dimensions of the ESD along axis of the Juan de Fuca Ridge and the relationship among volcanic flow morphologies within and beyond the ESD suggest the four different segments of the Juan de Fuca Ridge presented in detail here display different stages in a cycle of oceanic crust accretion. This cycle includes episodes in which there is (1) extrusive volcanic construction which widen the crestal ridge prior to the collapse of the summit depression, (2) collapse within the summit region of the crestal ridge to form an ESD during a phase of volcanic inactivity, and (3) renewed magmatism in the ESD as its floor widens by extension and brittle fracture of the upper crust. This episodic model implies that the width of the young seafloor affected by volcanic extrusion or dominated by tectonic stretching varies through time.

  6. Volcanic Episodicity and a Non-Steady State Rift Valley Along Northeast Pacific Spreading Centers: Evidence From Sea MARC I

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kappel, Ellen S.; Ryan, William B. F.

    1986-12-01

    Sea MARC I side-looking sonar images and Sea Beam bathymetry along a 400-km stretch of the Juan de Fuca Ridge crest provide evidence that excessive extrusive volcanism periodically builds a crestal ridge along the axis of seafloor spreading. An elongate summit depression (ESD), or rift valley, is commonly observed in the spine of this crestal ridge. The crestal ridge volcanic landform has a distinctive shape that is recognized in bathymetric contours both along the spreading axis and at least up to 30 km away from the axis. The landform has a plan-form shape that resembles a side view of an archer's bow with the long dimension of the bow form parallel to the strike of the ridge. In cross section, the bow form is flat on top and has steep flanks. These bow-form shapes can be explained by magma that rises into the crust at a discrete center and flows laterally into belts of ridge-parallel dikes, similar to Icelandic fissure eruptions. Both the variable dimensions of the ESD along axis of the Juan de Fuca Ridge and the relationship among volcanic flow morphologies within and beyond the ESD suggest the four different segments of the Juan de Fuca Ridge presented in detail here display different stages in a cycle of oceanic crust accretion. This cycle includes episodes in which there is (1) extrusive volcanic construction which widen the crestal ridge prior to the collapse of the summit depression, (2) collapse within the summit region of the crestal ridge to form an ESD during a phase of volcanic inactivity, and (3) renewed magmatism in the ESD as its floor widens by extension and brittle fracture of the upper crust. This episodic model implies that the width of the young seafloor affected by volcanic extrusion or dominated by tectonic stretching varies through time.

  7. TerraSAR-X high-resolution radar remote sensing: an operational warning system for Rift Valley fever risk.

    PubMed

    Vignolles, Cécile; Tourre, Yves M; Mora, Oscar; Imanache, Laurent; Lafaye, Murielle

    2010-11-01

    In the vicinity of the Barkedji village (in the Ferlo region of Senegal), the abundance and aggressiveness of the vector mosquitoes for Rift Valley fever (RVF) are strongly linked to rainfall events and associated ponds dynamics. Initially, these results were obtained from spectral analysis of high-resolution (~10 m) Spot-5 images, but, as a part of the French AdaptFVR project, identification of the free water dynamics within ponds was made with the new high-resolution (down to 3-meter pixels), Synthetic Aperture Radar satellite (TerraSAR-X) produced by Infoterra GmbH, Friedrichshafen/Potsdam, Germany. During summer 2008, within a 30 x 50 km radar image, it was found that identified free water fell well within the footprints of ponds localized by optical data (i.e. Spot-5 images), which increased the confidence in this new and complementary remote sensing technique. Moreover, by using near real-time rainfall data from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), NASA/JAXA joint mission, the filling-up and flushing-out rates of the ponds can be accurately determined. The latter allows for a precise, spatio-temporal mapping of the zones potentially occupied by mosquitoes capable of revealing the variability of pond surfaces. The risk for RVF infection of gathered bovines and small ruminants (~1 park/km(2)) can thus be assessed. This new operational approach (which is independent of weather conditions) is an important development in the mapping of risk components (i.e. hazards plus vulnerability) related to RVF transmission during the summer monsoon, thus contributing to a RVF early warning system. PMID:21080318

  8. Fluoride exposure from groundwater as reflected by urinary fluoride and children's dental fluorosis in the Main Ethiopian Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Rango, Tewodros; Vengosh, Avner; Jeuland, Marc; Tekle-Haimanot, Redda; Weinthal, Erika; Kravchenko, Julia; Paul, Christopher; McCornick, Peter

    2014-10-15

    This cross-sectional study explores the relationships between children's F(-) exposure from drinking groundwater and urinary F(-) concentrations, combined with dental fluorosis (DF) in the Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) Valley. We examined the DF prevalence and severity among 491 children (10 to 15 years old) who are life-long residents of 33 rural communities in which groundwater concentrations of F(-) cover a wide range. A subset of 156 children was selected for urinary F(-) measurements. Our results showed that the mean F(-) concentrations in groundwater were 8.5 ± 4.1 mg/L (range: 1.1-18 mg/L), while those in urine were 12.1±7.3 mg/L (range: 1.1-39.8 mg/L). The prevalence of mild, moderate, and severe DF in children's teeth was 17%, 29%, and 45%, respectively, and the majority (90%; n=140) of the children had urinary F(-) concentrations above 3 mg/L. Below this level most of the teeth showed mild forms of DF. The exposure-response relationship between F(-) and DF was positive and non-linear, with DF severity tending to level off above a F(-) threshold of ~6 mg/L, most likely due to the fact that at ~6 mg/L the enamel is damaged as much as it can be clinically observed in most children. We also observed differential prevalence (and severity) of DF and urinary concentration, across children exposed to similar F(-) concentrations in water, which highlights the importance of individual-specific factors in addition to the F(-) levels in drinking water. Finally, we investigated urinary F(-) in children from communities where defluoridation remediation was taking place. The lower F(-) concentration measured in urine of this population demonstrates the capacity of the urinary F(-) method as an effective monitoring and evaluation tool for assessing the outcome of successful F(-) mitigation strategy in relatively short time (months) in areas affected with severe fluorosis.

  9. NW Africa post-rift tectonics: fieldwork constraints from an "unfitting" anticline in west Morocco

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernández-Blanco, David; Gouiza, Mohamed

    2015-04-01

    The evolution of the Moroccan Atlantic rifted margin is marked by a period of abnormal and excessive early post-rift subsidence during the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous affecting the proximal coastal basins, the continental shelf and the distal deep basins, which acted coevally to km-scale uplift and erosion of large domains to the east. The tectonics of the uplift event are still unclear, as it took place 30 to 50 Myr after lithospheric breakup between Morocco and Nova Scotia and prior to the Atlas/Alpine contraction, which gave rise to the Atlas and the Rif mountain belts. The Essaouira-Haha basin, located on the coastal plain of the Atlantic rifted margin of Morocco, and bounded by two uplifted Paleozoic basement highs (i.e. the Massif Ancien of Marrakech, to the east, and the Jebilet, to the northeast), is an ideal location to investigate the tectonic processes that might have triggered these vertical movements. Although most of the deformation observed in the basin is classically attributed to Upper Cretaceous halokinesis and Neogene Atlas contraction, recent works have shown the existence of contractional structures. We carry out a structural analysis of the Jbel Amsittene Anticline, located in the middle of the Essaouira-Haha basin to investigate the tectonics of its formation and its relationship with the above-mentioned exhumation. We show structural field data along several cross-sections transecting the anticline, and characterize a salt-cored fault propagation fold verging north, with a Triassic salt acting as a detachment plane. Regional kinematic indicators and structures show overall NNW-SSE to NNE-SSW shortening and active tectonics during the postrift phase, as indicated by syn-tectonic wedges seen for the Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous period. These facts discard the "salt-drives-tectonics" theory to let "tectonic-drives-salt" one to rise, and point to factors other than small-cell mantle convection acting during the evolution of the Moroccan

  10. High Seroprevalence of Rift Valley Fever and Evidence for Endemic Circulation in Mbeya Region, Tanzania, in a Cross-Sectional Study

    PubMed Central

    Weller, Nina; Clowes, Petra; Kroidl, Inge; Ntinginya, Elias; Machibya, Harun; Maboko, Leonard; Löscher, Thomas; Dobler, Gerhard; Hoelscher, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Background The Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an arthropod-borne phlebovirus. RVFV mostly causes outbreaks among domestic ruminants with a major economic impact. Human infections are associated with these events, with a fatality rate of 0.5–2%. Since the virus is able to use many mosquito species of temperate climates as vectors, it has a high potential to spread to outside Africa. Methodology/Principal Findings We conducted a stratified, cross-sectional sero-prevalence survey in 1228 participants from Mbeya region, southwestern Tanzania. Samples were selected from 17,872 persons who took part in a cohort study in 2007 and 2008. RVFV IgG status was determined by indirect immunofluorescence. Possible risk factors were analyzed using uni- and multi-variable Poisson regression models. We found a unique local maximum of RVFV IgG prevalence of 29.3% in a study site close to Lake Malawi (N = 150). The overall seroprevalence was 5.2%. Seropositivity was significantly associated with higher age, lower socio-economic status, ownership of cattle and decreased with distance to Lake Malawi. A high vegetation density, higher minimum and lower maximum temperatures were found to be associated with RVFV IgG positivity. Altitude of residence, especially on a small scale in the high-prevalence area was strongly correlated (PR 0.87 per meter, 95% CI = 0.80–0.94). Abundant surface water collections are present in the lower areas of the high-prevalence site. RVF has not been diagnosed clinically, nor an outbreak detected in the high-prevalence area. Conclusions RVFV is probably circulating endemically in the region. The presence of cattle, dense vegetation and temperate conditions favour mosquito propagation and virus replication in the vector and seem to play major roles in virus transmission and circulation. The environmental risk-factors that we identified could serve to more exactly determine areas at risk for RVFV endemicity. PMID:22479657

  11. Spatio-temporal variation in prevalence of Rift Valley fever: a post-epidemic serum survey in cattle and wildlife in Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Lwande, Olivia Wesula; Paul, George Omondi; Chiyo, Patrick I.; Ng'ang'a, Eliud; Otieno, Viola; Obanda, Vincent; Evander, Magnus

    2015-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a fatal arthropod-borne zoonotic disease of livestock and humans. Since the identification of RVF in Kenya in the 1930s, repeated epizootics and epidemics coinciding with El Niño events have occurred in several locations in Africa and Saudi Arabia, causing mass deaths of livestock and humans. RVF is of great interest worldwide because of its negative effect on international livestock trade and its potential to spread globally. The latter is due to the increasing incidence of extreme climatic phenomena caused by global warming, as well as to the increase in global trade and international travel. How RVF is maintained and sustained between epidemics and epizootics is not clearly understood, but it has been speculated that wildlife reservoirs and trans-ovarian transmission in the vector may be important. Several studies have examined the role of wildlife and livestock in isolation or in a limited geographical location within the one country over a short time (usually less than a year). In this study, we examined the seroprevalence of anti-RVF antibodies in cattle and several wildlife species from several locations in Kenya over an inter-epidemic period spanning up to 7 years. Methods A serological survey of immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies to RVF using competitive ELISA was undertaken on 297 serum samples from different wildlife species at various locations in Kenya. The samples were collected between 2008 and 2015. Serum was also collected in 2014 from 177 cattle from Ol Pejeta Conservancy; 113 of the cattle were in close contact with wildlife and the other 64 were kept separate from buffalo and large game by an electric fence. Results The seroprevalence of RVF virus (RVFV) antibody was 11.6% in wildlife species during the study period. Cattle that could come in contact with wildlife and large game were all negative for RVFV. The seroprevalence was relatively high in elephants, rhinoceros, and buffalo, but there were no

  12. High content image-based screening of a protease inhibitor library reveals compounds broadly active against Rift Valley fever virus and other highly pathogenic RNA viruses.

    PubMed

    Mudhasani, Rajini; Kota, Krishna P; Retterer, Cary; Tran, Julie P; Whitehouse, Chris A; Bavari, Sina

    2014-08-01

    High content image-based screening was developed as an approach to test a protease inhibitor small molecule library for antiviral activity against Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) and to determine their mechanism of action. RVFV is the causative agent of severe disease of humans and animals throughout Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Of the 849 compounds screened, 34 compounds exhibited ≥ 50% inhibition against RVFV. All of the hit compounds could be classified into 4 distinct groups based on their unique chemical backbone. Some of the compounds also showed broad antiviral activity against several highly pathogenic RNA viruses including Ebola, Marburg, Venezuela equine encephalitis, and Lassa viruses. Four hit compounds (C795-0925, D011-2120, F694-1532 and G202-0362), which were most active against RVFV and showed broad-spectrum antiviral activity, were selected for further evaluation for their cytotoxicity, dose response profile, and mode of action using classical virological methods and high-content imaging analysis. Time-of-addition assays in RVFV infections suggested that D011-2120 and G202-0362 targeted virus egress, while C795-0925 and F694-1532 inhibited virus replication. We showed that D011-2120 exhibited its antiviral effects by blocking microtubule polymerization, thereby disrupting the Golgi complex and inhibiting viral trafficking to the plasma membrane during virus egress. While G202-0362 also affected virus egress, it appears to do so by a different mechanism, namely by blocking virus budding from the trans Golgi. F694-1532 inhibited viral replication, but also appeared to inhibit overall cellular gene expression. However, G202-0362 and C795-0925 did not alter any of the morphological features that we examined and thus may prove to be good candidates for antiviral drug development. Overall this work demonstrates that high-content image analysis can be used to screen chemical libraries for new antivirals and to determine their mechanism of action and

  13. Deltas of the Lake Malawi rift, east Africa: Seismic expression and exploration implications

    SciTech Connect

    Scholz, C.A.

    1995-11-01

    High-resolution, air-gun-sourced seismic reflection surveys over the offshore regions of five river deltas in Lake Malawi in the East African rift system reveal considerable variability in acoustic facies and stratigraphic architecture. This variability can largely be attributed to the influences of different structural settings, and to a lesser degree to high-amplitude (100-400 m) and high-frequency (1000 to 100,000 yr) fluctuations in lake level. Deltas on flexural and axial margins in the rift lake show well-developed progradational geometries. In contrast, a delta on a steep, accommodation zone margin distributes coarse sediments over a broad depositional apron, rather than concentrating sediment in discrete progradational lobes as on the other deltas. A large border fault margin river delta displays the most complex tectonic and stratigraphic architecture of all the deltas studied. It contains several delta-associated facies, including prograding clinoform packages, fan deltas stacked against a boundary fault, and extensive subaqueous fans. Flexural margin lowstand deltas may be the most prospective for hydrocarbon exploration due to their large, internally well-organized, progradational lobes and their close proximity to deep-water, high total organic carbon lacustrine source facies.

  14. Cenozoic extension in the Kenya Rift from low-temperature thermochronology: Links to diachronous spatiotemporal evolution of rifting in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torres Acosta, Verónica; Bande, Alejandro; Sobel, Edward R.; Parra, Mauricio; Schildgen, Taylor F.; Stuart, Finlay; Strecker, Manfred R.

    2015-12-01

    The cooling history of rift shoulders and the subsidence history of rift basins are cornerstones for reconstructing the morphotectonic evolution of extensional geodynamic provinces, assessing their role in paleoenvironmental changes and evaluating the resource potential of their basin fills. Our apatite fission track and zircon (U-Th)/He data from the Samburu Hills and the Elgeyo Escarpment in the northern and central sectors of the Kenya Rift indicate a broadly consistent thermal evolution of both regions. Results of thermal modeling support a three-phased thermal history since the early Paleocene. The first phase (~65-50 Ma) was characterized by rapid cooling of the rift shoulders and may be coeval with faulting and sedimentation in the Anza Rift basin, now located in the subsurface of the Turkana depression and areas to the east in northern Kenya. In the second phase, very slow cooling or slight reheating occurred between ~45 and 15 Ma as a result of either stable surface conditions, very slow exhumation, or subsidence. The third phase comprised renewed rapid cooling starting at ~15 Ma. This final cooling represents the most recent stage of rifting, which followed widespread flood-phonolite emplacement and has shaped the present-day landscape through rift shoulder uplift, faulting, basin filling, protracted volcanism, and erosion. When compared with thermochronologic and geologic data from other sectors of the East African Rift System, extension appears to be diachronous, spatially disparate, and partly overlapping, likely driven by interactions between mantle-driven processes and crustal heterogeneities, rather than the previously suggested north-south migrating influence of a mantle plume.

  15. Antiphasing Between Rainfall in Africa's Rift Valley and North America's Great Basin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Broecker, Wallace S.; Pettet, Dorothy; Hajdas, Irena; Lin, Jo; Clark, Elizabeth

    1998-01-01

    The beginning of the Bolling-Allerod warm period is marked in Greenland ice by an abrupt rise in (Delta)O-18, an abrupt drop in dust rain, and an abrupt increase in atmospheric methane content. The surface waters in the Norwegian Sea underwent a simultaneous abrupt warming. At about this time, a major change in the pattern of global rainfall occurred. Lake Victoria (latitude 0deg), which prior to this time was dry, was rejuvenated. The Red Sea, which prior to this time was hypersaline, freshened. Lake Lahontan, which prior to this time had achieved its largest size, desiccated. Whereas the chronologic support for the abruptness of the hydrologic changes is firm only for the Red Sea, in keeping with evidence obtained well away from the nor-them Atlantic in the Santa Barbara basin and the Cariaco Trench, the onset and end of the millennial-duration climate events were globally abrupt. If so, the proposed linkage between the size of African closed basin lakes and insolation cycles must be reexamined.

  16. Determinants of peak discharge in steep mountain catchments - Case of the Rift Valley escarpment of Northern Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asfaha, Tesfaalem G.; Frankl, Amaury; Haile, Mitiku; Zenebe, Amanuel; Nyssen, Jan

    2015-10-01

    Peak discharge is an important hydrological parameter of mountain torrents. However, due to the flashy and destructive nature of their stream flows, it is usually difficult to understand the hydrological behavior of steep mountain catchments through direct measurements of discharges. In this study, 332 daily peak discharge events from 11 steep (0.27-0.65 m m-1) catchments (0.4-25 km2) were measured in three rainy seasons (2012-2014) with the objective of analyzing runoff response of steep mountain catchments in the western Rift Valley escarpment of Northern Ethiopia. Seven rain gauges were installed at different altitudes (1623-2851 m a.s.l.) in and nearby the catchments. Event peak discharges were calculated using the Manning's equation from daily measurements of maximum discharge height at 11 crest stage gauges. Percentages of land cover classes were detected from high resolution (0.6 m) Google Earth Imagery (February 1, 2014). Morphometric characteristics of the catchments were computed both from ASTER digital elevation model (DEM) and topographic maps. Correlation analysis between average daily precipitation (Pd) and peak discharge (Qp) showed strong positive relation (R2 = 0.32-0.94, P < 0.05) in all the catchments. Catchment-specific peak discharge coefficient (Cp) showed a strong decreasing relation with vegetation cover (R2 = 0.85, P < 0.01), relative distance of vegetation cover from the thalweg (R2 = 0.55, P < 0.01), combined index of vegetation cover and its relative distance from the thalweg (R2 = 0.76, P < 0.01), catchment length (R2 = 0.37, P < 0.05) and time of concentration (R2 = 0.43, P < 0.05). It was correlated positively with catchment slope gradient (R2 = 0.37, P < 0.05) and index of vegetation distribution (R2 = 0.45, P < 0.05). A stepwise multiple regression analysis revealed that 99% (P < 0.01) of the variability of catchment-specific peak discharge coefficient in the catchments can be predicted by vegetation cover and infiltration number

  17. Fluoride exposure from groundwater as reflected by urinary fluoride and children's dental fluorosis in the Main Ethiopian Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Rango, Tewodros; Vengosh, Avner; Jeuland, Marc; Tekle-Haimanot, Redda; Weinthal, Erika; Kravchenko, Julia; Paul, Christopher; McCornick, Peter

    2014-10-15

    This cross-sectional study explores the relationships between children's F(-) exposure from drinking groundwater and urinary F(-) concentrations, combined with dental fluorosis (DF) in the Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) Valley. We examined the DF prevalence and severity among 491 children (10 to 15 years old) who are life-long residents of 33 rural communities in which groundwater concentrations of F(-) cover a wide range. A subset of 156 children was selected for urinary F(-) measurements. Our results showed that the mean F(-) concentrations in groundwater were 8.5 ± 4.1 mg/L (range: 1.1-18 mg/L), while those in urine were 12.1±7.3 mg/L (range: 1.1-39.8 mg/L). The prevalence of mild, moderate, and severe DF in children's teeth was 17%, 29%, and 45%, respectively, and the majority (90%; n=140) of the children had urinary F(-) concentrations above 3 mg/L. Below this level most of the teeth showed mild forms of DF. The exposure-response relationship between F(-) and DF was positive and non-linear, with DF severity tending to level off above a F(-) threshold of ~6 mg/L, most likely due to the fact that at ~6 mg/L the enamel is damaged as much as it can be clinically observed in most children. We also observed differential prevalence (and severity) of DF and urinary concentration, across children exposed to similar F(-) concentrations in water, which highlights the importance of individual-specific factors in addition to the F(-) levels in drinking water. Finally, we investigated urinary F(-) in children from communities where defluoridation remediation was taking place. The lower F(-) concentration measured in urine of this population demonstrates the capacity of the urinary F(-) method as an effective monitoring and evaluation tool for assessing the outcome of successful F(-) mitigation strategy in relatively short time (months) in areas affected with severe fluorosis. PMID:25084227

  18. Indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for the detection of antibody against Rift Valley fever virus in domestic and wild ruminant sera.

    PubMed

    Paweska, J T; Smith, S J; Wright, I M; Williams, R; Cohen, A S; Van Dijk, A A; Grobbelaar, A A; Croft, J E; Swanepoel, R; Gerdes, G H

    2003-03-01

    An indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (I-ELISA) for the detection of specific IgG immunoglobulins against Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) was validated in-house. A total of 3055 sera from sheep (n = 1159), goats (n = 636), cattle (n = 203), African buffalo (n = 928), and other wild ruminants (n = 129), including eland, kudu, and black wildebeest, was used. Sera from domestic ruminants were collected in West (n = 10), South (n = 1654) and East Africa (n = 334), and sera from wild ruminants (n = 1064) were collected in South Africa. In addition, 136 sera from eight experimentally RVFV-infected sheep, taken during a period of 28 days post infection (dpi), were used to study the kinetics of RVFV antibody production. Field sera were tested by the serum neutralization (VN) test and experimental sera by VN and haemagglutination-inhibition (HI) test. Based on VN test results, negative sera were regarded as reference controls from RVFV-free, and positive sera were regarded as reference controls from RVFV-infected subpopulations of animals. ELISA data were expressed as the percentage positivity (PP) of an internal high positive control. The two-graph receiver operating characteristics approach was used for the selection and optimization of I-ELISA cut-offs including the misclassification costs term and Youden index (J). In addition, cut-off values were determined as the mean plus two-fold standard deviation of the result observed with the RVFV-free subpopulations. Established optimal cut-offs were different for each of the data sets analyzed, and ranged from 1.65 PP (buffalo) to 9.1 PP (goats). At the cut-off giving the highest estimate of combined measure of diagnostic accuracy (highest J value), the I-ELISA test parameters were determined as follows: (1) Diagnostic sensitivity (%): cattle--84.31, buffalo--94.44, sheep--98.91, goats--99.18. (2) Diagnostic specificity (%): cattle--99.34, buffalo--98.28, sheep--99.16, goats--99.23 and other game ruminants--99.26. In

  19. Arbovirus surveillance from 1990 to 1995 in the Barkedji area (Ferlo) of Senegal, a possible natural focus of Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Traoré-Lamizana, M; Fontenille, D; Diallo, M; Bâ, Y; Zeller, H G; Mondo, M; Adam, F; Thonon, J; Maïga, A

    2001-07-01

    Surveillance for mosquito-borne viruses was conducted in Barkedji area from 1990 to 1995, following an outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus in southern Mauritania. Mosquitoes, sand flies, and midges were collected from human bait and trapped by solid-state U.S. Army battery-powered CDC miniature light traps baited with dry ice or animals (sheep or chickens) at four ponds. Overall, 237,091 male and female mosquitoes representing 52 species in eight genera, 214,967 Phlebotomine sand flies, and 2,527 Culicoides were collected, identified, and tested for arboviruses in 9,490 pools (7,050 pools of female and 331 of male mosquitoes, 2,059 pools of sand flies and 50 pools of Culicoides). Viruses isolated included one Alphavirus, Babanki (BBK); six Flaviviruses, Bagaza (BAG), Ar D 65239, Wesselsbron (WSL), West Nile (WN), Koutango (KOU), Saboya (SAB); two Bunyavirus, Bunyamwera (BUN) and Ngari (NRI); two Phleboviruses, Rift Valley fever (RVF) and Gabek Forest (GF); one Orbivirus, Ar D 66707 (Sanar); one Rhabdovirus, Chandipura (CHP); and one unclassified virus, Ar D 95537. Based on repeated isolations, high field infection rates and abundance, Culex appeared to be the vectors of BAG, BBK, Ar D 65239 (BAG-like), and WN viruses, Ae. vexans and Ae. ochraceus of RVF virus, Mansonia of WN and BAG viruses, Mimomyia of WN and BAG viruses, and Phlebotomine of SAB, CHP, Ar D 95537, and GF viruses. Our data indicate that RVF virus circulated repeatedly in the Barkedji area.

  20. Regional assessment of lake ecological states using Landsat: A classification scheme for alkaline-saline, flamingo lakes in the East African Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tebbs, E. J.; Remedios, J. J.; Avery, S. T.; Rowland, C. S.; Harper, D. M.

    2015-08-01

    In situ reflectance measurements and Landsat satellite imagery were combined to develop an optical classification scheme for alkaline-saline lakes in the Eastern Rift Valley. The classification allows the ecological state and consequent value, in this case to Lesser Flamingos, to be determined using Landsat satellite imagery. Lesser Flamingos depend on a network of 15 alkaline-saline lakes in East African Rift Valley, where they feed by filtering cyanobacteria and benthic diatoms from the lakes' waters. The classification developed here was based on a decision tree which used the reflectance in Landsat ETM+ bands 2-4 to assign one of six classes: low phytoplankton biomass; suspended sediment-dominated; microphytobenthos; high cyanobacterial biomass; cyanobacterial scum and bleached cyanobacterial scum. The classification accuracy was 77% when verified against in situ measurements. Classified imagery and timeseries were produced for selected lakes, which show the different ecological behaviours of these complex systems. The results have highlighted the importance to flamingos of the food resources offered by the extremely remote Lake Logipi. This study has demonstrated the potential of high spatial resolution, low spectral resolution sensors for providing ecologically valuable information at a regional scale, for alkaline-saline lakes and similar hypereutrophic inland waters.

  1. Nonspreading Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection of Human Dendritic Cells Results in Downregulation of CD83 and Full Maturation of Bystander Cells

    PubMed Central

    Oreshkova, Nadia; Wichgers Schreur, Paul J.; Spel, Lotte; Vloet, Rianka P. M.; Moormann, Rob J. M.; Boes, Marianne; Kortekaas, Jeroen

    2015-01-01

    Vaccines based on nonspreading Rift Valley fever virus (NSR) induce strong humoral and robust cellular immune responses with pronounced Th1 polarisation. The present work was aimed to gain insight into the molecular basis of NSR-mediated immunity. Recent studies have demonstrated that wild-type Rift Valley fever virus efficiently targets and replicates in dendritic cells (DCs). We found that NSR infection of cultured human DCs results in maturation of DCs, characterized by surface upregulation of CD40, CD80, CD86, MHC-I and MHC-II and secretion of the proinflammatory cytokines IFN-β, IL-6 and TNF. Interestingly, expression of the most prominent marker of DC maturation, CD83, was consistently downregulated at 24 hours post infection. Remarkably, NSR infection also completely abrogated CD83 upregulation by LPS. Downregulation of CD83 was not associated with reduced mRNA levels or impaired CD83 mRNA transport from the nucleus and could not be prevented by inhibition of the proteasome or endocytic degradation pathways, suggesting that suppression occurs at the translational level. In contrast to infected cells, bystander DCs displayed full maturation as evidenced by upregulation of CD83. Our results indicate that bystander DCs play an important role in NSR-mediated immunity. PMID:26575844

  2. An Archean Geomagnetic Reversal in the Kaap Valley Pluton, South Africa

    PubMed

    Layer; Kroner; McWilliams

    1996-08-16

    The Kaap Valley pluton in South Africa is a tonalite intrusion associated with the Archean Barberton Greenstone Belt. Antipodal paleomagnetic directions determined from the central and marginal parts of the pluton record a geomagnetic reversal that occurred as the pluton cooled. The age of the reversal is constrained by an 40Ar/39Ar plateau age from hornblende at 3214 +/- 4 million years, making it the oldest known reversal. The data presented here suggest that Earth has had a reversing, perhaps dipolar, magnetic field since at least 3.2 billion years ago. PMID:8688075

  3. Geochemistry and origins of lacustrine ferromanganese nodules from the Malawi Rift, Central Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, T. M.; Owen, R. B.

    1992-07-01

    Ferromanganese nodules recovered from 100-130 m depth near Likoma Island, eastern Lake Malawi, have been analysed for some thirty-four elements by DC-arc optical emission spectrometry. The concretions routinely hold in excess of 50% Fe + Mn, although actual Fe/Mn ratios appear to vary inversely with nodule size. Subcrustal values are recorded for Mg, Al, Si, K, Ca and Ti. The abundance of these major elements is considered to primarily reflect the amount and mineralogy of detrital impurities within the nodule structures. Of the twenty-six analysed trace elements, Zn, Co, Pb, Ba, Y, La, V, Zr, Ag, Be, and Nb are present at levels exceeding their average crustal abundances, while subcrustal or subdetection limit values are recorded for Sr, Ni, Cu, Cr, Sc, Rb, Ga, Li, B, Mo, Cd, Bi, Sn, Ce, and Nd. The high enrichment factor noted for Ba (21.95), the limited enrichment of Co (5.53) and Zn (2.06) and depletion of Ni (0.62) and Cu (0.09) are characteristic of most lacustrine ferromanganese deposits and adequately distinguish the Lake Malawi nodules from their deep-ocean counterparts. While the ferromanganese deposits of the Malawi rift are predominantly of diagenetic origin, hydrothermal exhalations may significantly control the supply of elements such as Fe, V, and Be. This implies a need to extend existing classification systems to include nodules formed through the simultaneous precipitation of metals from two or more sources. The nodule sequences in the vicinity of Likoma Island are physically suited to economic exploitation, but fail to meet prescribed chemical criteria for Mn or Ni-Co-Cu ores.

  4. The use of sucrose-acetone-extracted Rift Valley fever virus antigen derived from cell culture in an indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and haemagglutination-inhibition test.

    PubMed

    Paweska, J T; Barnard, B J; Williams, R

    1995-12-01

    A sucrose-acetone-extracted, Madin-Darby-bovine-kidney (MDBK)-derived Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) antigen was tested both in an indirect ELISA and a haemagglutination-inhibition test for its ability to detect serum antibodies to RVFV. Optimal conditions for antigen concentration, serum and conjugate dilutions for the ELISA were established by checkerboard titration. The specificity and sensitivity of ELISA were determined by the use of paired pre- and post-vaccination sheep-serum samples. Compared with the virus neutralization test, the overall ELISA specificity and sensitivity were 97.4 and 97.3%, respectively. There was a 100% correlation between the results obtained in haemagglutination-inhibition tests with a RVFV sucrose-acetone-extracted antigen derived from hamster liver, and from MDBK cells. A total of 10 582 field-serum samples (84 cattle, 3,659 sheep, 6,839 goats) collected in 1994-1995 from animals of unknown vaccination status in different regions of South Africa were tested with ELISA for antibodies against RVFV. There were no seropositive cattle, 0.16% seropositive sheep and 0.12% seropositive goats. This study demonstrates the potential diagnostic application of cell-culture-derived, sucrose-acetone-extracted RVFV antigen in an indirect ELISA and HI test.

  5. Screening for Rift Valley fever infection in northern Somalia: a GIS based survey method to overcome the lack of sampling frame.

    PubMed

    Soumare, Baba; Tempia, Stefano; Cagnolati, Vittorio; Mohamoud, Abdullatif; Van Huylenbroeck, Guido; Berkvens, Dirk

    2007-04-15

    Following repeated import bans imposed by Saudi Arabia on livestock originated from Somalia due to suspicion of Rift Valley fever (RVF) presence and the severe socio-economic consequences of this, it was imperative for the Somaliland government to carry out surveillance activities in order to determine the status of transboundary diseases in its territory. A GIS computer software (Arcview) was used to overcome the lack of lists of sampling sites due to the high mobility of pastoral nomadic herds in the study area. This method proved very convenient and flexible for the random selection of sampling sites and thus the compliance with the requirements by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) for statistically valid methods if the surveillance outcome is to meet international recognition and acceptance. Screening in Somaliland in 2001 and in Puntland in 2003 which targeted mainly sheep and goats aged 1-2 years (97% of surveyed animals) revealed no signs compatible with the disease but an overall sero-prevalence of 2+/-0.02% (90/4570) and 5+/-0.3% (206/4050), respectively. The spatial distribution showed clusters of high sero-prevalence located mostly in the Nugal Valley. This trend was confirmed by the follow-up survey implemented in Somaliland in 2004 with a herd prevalence of 80+/-6% and a within-herd prevalence up to 50% located again in the Nugal Valley. This result suggests the maintenance and increase of RVF virus activity in the valley. In addition conditions favourable to the breeding and survival of the vector population and the high density of livestock make the Nugal Valley an area of high risk for a RVF outbreak where sentinel herds will be placed.

  6. Age constraints for the present fault configuration in the Imperial Valley, California: Evidence for northwestward propagation of the Gulf of California rift system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Larsen, Shawn; Reilinger, Robert

    1990-01-01

    Releveling and other geophysical data for the Imperial Valley of southern California suggest the northern section of the Imperial-Brawley fault system, which includes the Mesquite Basin and Brawley Seismic Zone, is much younger than the 4 to 5 million year age of the valley itself. A minimum age of 3000 years is calculated for the northern segment of the Imperial fault from correlations between surface topography and geodetically observed seismic/interseismic vertical movements. Calculations of a maximum age of 80,000 years is based upon displacements in the crystalline basement along the Imperial fault, inferred from seismic refraction surveys. This young age supports recent interpretations of heat flow measurements, which also suggest that the current patterns of seismicity and faults in the Imperial Valley are not long lived. The current fault geometry and basement morphology suggest northwestward growth of the Imperial fault and migration of the Brawley Seismic Zone. It is suggested that this migration is a manifestation of the propagation of the Gulf of California rift system into the North American continent.

  7. Correlation between the silica concentration and the orifice temperature in the warm springs along the jordan-dead sea rift valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Levitte, D.; Eckstein, Y.

    1978-01-01

    Analysis of twenty-one thermal springs emerging along the Jordan-Dead Sea Rift Valley in Israel indicates a very good correlation between the concentration of dissolved silica and the temperature of the spring orifice. Dissolution of quartz was identified as the apparent source of the silica in the water. Application of the silica geothermometer for mixed systems suggests that the springs in the Tiberias Lake Basin are supplied with hot water from deep reservoir (or reservoirs) at a temperature of 115??C (239??F). The same temperature was postulated earlier by the application of the Na-K-Ca hydro-geothermometer to a group of thermal springs in the same basin. The temperature of the reservoir supplying hot brines to the springs emerging along the western shore of the Dead Sea is estimated at 90??C (194??F).

  8. Mastritherium (Artiodactyla, Anthracotheriidae) from Wadi Sabya, southwestern Saudi Arabia; an earliest Miocene age for continental rift-valley volcanic deposits of the Red Sea margin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Madden, Gary T.; Schmidt, Dwight Lyman; Whitmore, Frank C.

    1983-01-01

    A lower jaw fragment with its last molar (M/3) from the Baid formation in Wadi Sabya, southwestern Saudi Arabia, represents the first recorded occurrence in the Arabian Peninsula of an anthracotheriid artiodactyl (hippo-like, even-toed ungulate). This fossil is identified as a primitive species of Masritherium, a North and East African genus restricted, previously to the later early Miocene. This identification indicates that the age of the Baid formation, long problematical, is early Miocene and, moreover, shows that the age of the fossil site is earliest Miocene (from 25 to 21Ma). The Wadi Sabya anthracothere is the first species of fossil mammal recorded from western Saudi Arabia, and more important, it indicates an early Miocene age for the volcanic deposits of a continental rift-valley that preceded the initial sea-floor spreading of the Red Sea.

  9. Relationship of climate, geography, and geology to the incidence of Rift Valley fever in Kenya during the 2006-2007 outbreak.

    PubMed

    Hightower, Allen; Kinkade, Carl; Nguku, Patrick M; Anyangu, Amwayi; Mutonga, David; Omolo, Jared; Njenga, M Kariuki; Feikin, Daniel R; Schnabel, David; Ombok, Maurice; Breiman, Robert F

    2012-02-01

    We estimated Rift Valley fever (RVF) incidence as a function of geological, geographical, and climatological factors during the 2006-2007 RVF epidemic in Kenya. Location information was obtained for 214 of 340 (63%) confirmed and probable RVF cases that occurred during an outbreak from November 1, 2006 to February 28, 2007. Locations with subtypes of solonetz, calcisols, solonchaks, and planosols soil types were highly associated with RVF occurrence during the outbreak period. Increased rainfall and higher greenness measures before the outbreak were associated with increased risk. RVF was more likely to occur on plains, in densely bushed areas, at lower elevations, and in the Somalia acacia ecological zone. Cases occurred in three spatial temporal clusters that differed by the date of associated rainfall, soil type, and land usage. PMID:22302875

  10. Relationship of climate, geography, and geology to the incidence of Rift Valley fever in Kenya during the 2006-2007 outbreak.

    PubMed

    Hightower, Allen; Kinkade, Carl; Nguku, Patrick M; Anyangu, Amwayi; Mutonga, David; Omolo, Jared; Njenga, M Kariuki; Feikin, Daniel R; Schnabel, David; Ombok, Maurice; Breiman, Robert F

    2012-02-01

    We estimated Rift Valley fever (RVF) incidence as a function of geological, geographical, and climatological factors during the 2006-2007 RVF epidemic in Kenya. Location information was obtained for 214 of 340 (63%) confirmed and probable RVF cases that occurred during an outbreak from November 1, 2006 to February 28, 2007. Locations with subtypes of solonetz, calcisols, solonchaks, and planosols soil types were highly associated with RVF occurrence during the outbreak period. Increased rainfall and higher greenness measures before the outbreak were associated with increased risk. RVF was more likely to occur on plains, in densely bushed areas, at lower elevations, and in the Somalia acacia ecological zone. Cases occurred in three spatial temporal clusters that differed by the date of associated rainfall, soil type, and land usage.

  11. Hydrothermal circulation, serpentinization, and degassing at a rift valley-fracture zone intersection: Mid-Atlantic Ridge near 15[degree]N, 45[degree]W

    SciTech Connect

    Rona, P.A.; Nelson, T.A. ); Bougault, H.; Charlou, J.L.; Needham, H.D. ); Appriou, P. ); Trefry, J.H. ); Eberhart, G.L.; Barone, A. )

    1992-09-01

    A hydrothermal system characterized by high ratios of methane to both manganese and suspended particulate matter was detected in seawater sampled at the eastern intersection of the rift valley of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge with the Fifteen-Twenty Fracture Zone. This finding contrasts with low ratios in black smoker-type hydrothermal systems that occur within spreading segments. Near-bottom water sampling coordinated with SeaBeam bathymetry and camera-temperature tows detected the highest concentrations of methane at fault zones in rocks with the appearance of altered ultramafic units in a large dome that forms part of the inside corner high at the intersection. The distinct chemical signatures of the two types of hydrothermal systems are inferred to be controlled by different circulation pathways related to reaction of seawater primarily with ultramafic rocks at intersections of spreading segments with fracture zones but with mafic rocks within spreading segments.

  12. A 3-year serological and virological cattle follow-up in Madagascar highlands suggests a non-classical transmission route of Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Nicolas, Gaëlle; Durand, Benoit; Rakotoarimanana, Tafika Tojofaniry; Lacote, Sandra; Chevalier, Véronique; Marianneau, Philippe

    2014-02-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne infection of livestock and human which causes a potentially severe disease. In 2008-2009, a RVF outbreak occurred in a temperate and mountainous area located on the highlands of Madagascar. A three-year cattle follow-up (2009-2011) was conducted in a pilot area of this highland. A seroprevalence rate of 28% was estimated in 2009 and a seroconversion rate of 7% in 2009-2010. A third cross-sectional survey showed a seroconversion rate of 14% in 2010-2011. In 2011 the longitudinal study suggested a RVFV circulation during the year. In this area where vectors density is low and cattle exchanges are linked to the virus local spread, we raise hypotheses that may explain the local persistence of the virus.

  13. Favipiravir (T-705) protects against peracute Rift Valley fever virus infection and reduces delayed-onset neurologic disease observed with ribavirin treatment.

    PubMed

    Scharton, Dionna; Bailey, Kevin W; Vest, Zachary; Westover, Jonna B; Kumaki, Yohichi; Van Wettere, Arnaud; Furuta, Yousuke; Gowen, Brian B

    2014-04-01

    Rift Valley fever is a zoonotic, arthropod-borne disease that affects livestock and humans. The etiologic agent, Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV; Bunyaviridae, Phlebovirus) is primarily transmitted through mosquito bites, but can also be transmitted by exposure to infectious aerosols. There are presently no licensed vaccines or therapeutics to prevent or treat severe RVFV infection in humans. We have previously reported on the activity of favipiravir (T-705) against the MP-12 vaccine strain of RVFV and other bunyaviruses in cell culture. In addition, efficacy has also been documented in mouse and hamster models of infection with the related Punta Toro virus. Here, hamsters challenged with the highly pathogenic ZH501 strain of RVFV were used to evaluate the activity of favipiravir against lethal infection. Subcutaneous RVFV challenge resulted in substantial serum and tissue viral loads and caused severe disease and mortality within 2-3 days of infection. Oral favipiravir (200 mg/kg/day) prevented mortality in 60% or greater of hamsters challenged with RVFV when administered within 1 or 6h post-exposure and reduced RVFV titers in serum and tissues relative to the time of treatment initiation. In contrast, although ribavirin (75 mg/kg/day) was effective at protecting animals from the peracute RVFV disease, most ultimately succumbed from a delayed-onset neurologic disease associated with high RVFV burden observed in the brain in moribund animals. When combined, T-705 and ribavirin treatment started 24 h post-infection significantly improved survival outcome and reduced serum and tissue virus titers compared to monotherapy. Our findings demonstrate significant post-RVFV exposure efficacy with favipiravir against both peracute disease and delayed-onset neuroinvasion, and suggest added benefit when combined with ribavirin.

  14. N-Glycans on the Rift Valley Fever Virus Envelope Glycoproteins Gn and Gc Redundantly Support Viral Infection via DC-SIGN

    PubMed Central

    Phoenix, Inaia; Nishiyama, Shoko; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Hill, Terence E.; Huante, Matthew B.; Slack, Olga A.L.; Carpio, Victor H.; Freiberg, Alexander N.; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever is a mosquito-transmitted, zoonotic disease that infects humans and ruminants. Dendritic cell specific intercellular adhesion molecule 3 (ICAM-3) grabbing non-integrin (DC-SIGN) acts as a receptor for members of the phlebovirus genus. The Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) glycoproteins (Gn/Gc) encode five putative N-glycan sequons (asparagine (N)–any amino acid (X)–serine (S)/threonine (T)) at positions: N438 (Gn), and N794, N829, N1035, and N1077 (Gc). The N-glycosylation profile and significance in viral infection via DC-SIGN have not been elucidated. Gc N-glycosylation was first evaluated by using Gc asparagine (N) to glutamine (Q) mutants. Subsequently, we generated a series of recombinant RVFV MP-12 strain mutants, which encode N-to-Q mutations, and the infectivity of each mutant in Jurkat cells stably expressing DC-SIGN was evaluated. Results showed that Gc N794, N1035, and N1077 were N-glycosylated but N829 was not. Gc N1077 was heterogeneously N-glycosylated. RVFV Gc made two distinct N-glycoforms: “Gc-large” and “Gc-small”, and N1077 was responsible for “Gc-large” band. RVFV showed increased infection of cells expressing DC-SIGN compared to cells lacking DC-SIGN. Infection via DC-SIGN was increased in the presence of either Gn N438 or Gc N1077. Our study showed that N-glycans on the Gc and Gn surface glycoproteins redundantly support RVFV infection via DC-SIGN. PMID:27223297

  15. A geographical information system-based multicriteria evaluation to map areas at risk for Rift Valley fever vector-borne transmission in Italy.

    PubMed

    Tran, A; Ippoliti, C; Balenghien, T; Conte, A; Gely, M; Calistri, P; Goffredo, M; Baldet, T; Chevalier, V

    2013-11-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a severe mosquito-borne disease that is caused by a Phlebovirus (Bunyaviridae) and affects domestic ruminants and humans. Recently, its distribution widened, threatening Europe. The probability of the introduction and large-scale spread of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in Europe is low, but localized RVF outbreaks may occur in areas where populations of ruminants and potential vectors are present. In this study, we assumed the introduction of the virus into Italy and focused on the risk of vector-borne transmission of RVFV to three main European potential hosts (cattle, sheep and goats). Five main potential mosquito vectors belonging to the Culex and Aedes genera that are present in Italy were identified in a literature review. We first modelled the geographical distribution of these five species based on expert knowledge and using land cover as a proxy of mosquito presence. The mosquito distribution maps were compared with field mosquito collections from Italy to validate the model. Next, the risk of RVFV transmission was modelled using a multicriteria evaluation (MCE) approach, integrating expert knowledge and the results of a literature review on host sensitivity and vector competence, feeding behaviour and abundance. A sensitivity analysis was performed to assess the robustness of the results with respect to expert choices. The resulting maps include (i) five maps of the vector distribution, (ii) a map of suitable areas for vector-borne transmission of RVFV and (iii) a map of the risk of RVFV vector-borne transmission to sensitive hosts given a viral introduction. Good agreement was found between the modelled presence probability and the observed presence or absence of each vector species. The resulting RVF risk map highlighted strong spatial heterogeneity and could be used to target surveillance. In conclusion, the geographical information system (GIS)-based MCE served as a valuable framework and a flexible tool for mapping the

  16. Favipiravir (T-705) protects against peracute Rift Valley fever virus infection and reduces delayed-onset neurologic disease observed with ribavirin treatment

    PubMed Central

    Scharton, Dionna; Bailey, Kevin W.; Vest, Zachary; Westover, Jonna B.; Kumaki, Yohichi; Van Wettere, Arnaud; Furuta, Yousuke; Gowen, Brian B.

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever is a zoonotic, arthropod-borne disease that affects livestock and humans. The etiologic agent, Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV; Bunyaviridae, Phlebovirus) is primarily transmitted through mosquito bites, but can also be transmitted by exposure to infectious aerosols. There are presently no licensed vaccines or therapeutics to prevent or treat severe RVFV infection in humans. We have previously reported on the activity of favipiravir (T-705) against the MP-12 vaccine strain of RVFV and other bunyaviruses in cell culture. In addition, efficacy has also been documented in mouse and hamster models of infection with the related Punta Toro virus. Here, we challenged hamsters with the highly pathogenic ZH501 strain of RVFV to evaluate the activity of favipiravir against lethal infection. Subcutaneous RVFV challenge resulted in substantial serum and tissue viral loads and caused severe disease and mortality within 2–3 days after infection. Oral favipiravir (200 mg/kg/day) prevented mortality in 60% or greater in hamsters challenged with RVFV when administered within 1 or 6 h post-exposure and reduced RVFV titers in serum and tissues relative to the time of treatment initiation. In contrast, although ribavirin (75 mg/kg/day) was effective at protecting animals from the peracute RVFV disease, most ultimately succumbed from a delayed-onset neurologic disease associated with high RVFV burden in the brain observed in moribund animals. When combined, T-705 and ribavirin treatment started 24 h post-infection significantly improved survival outcome and reduced serum and tissue virus titers compared to monotherapy. Our findings demonstrate significant post-RVFV exposure efficacy with favipiravir against both peracute disease and delayed-onset neuroinvasion, and suggest added benefit when combined with ribavirin. PMID:24486952

  17. Adapting to climate change for food security through supplementary irrigation and changing sowing dates in the Rift Valley dry lands of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh Bitew, Alemayehu; Stroosnijder, Leo; keesstra, Saskia

    2015-04-01

    Studies on climate impacts and related adaptation strategies are increasingly becoming important to counteract the negative effects of climate change. In Ethiopia, climate change is likely to affect crop yields negatively. However, quantitative evidence is lacking about the ability of farm level adaptation options to offset negative impacts on food security. The MarkSimGCM weather generator was used to generate projected daily rainfall and temperature data originally taken from ECHAM5 general circulation model and ensemble mean of six models under A2 (high) and B1 (low) emission scenarios. We validated the FAO AquaCrop model and subsequently used it to predict maize yields and explore three adaptations options. Increasing plant density has the least effect on maize yield so that the density that is currently used by 'good' farmers (30,000) is recommended. The optimum level of supplemental irrigation (SI), in combination with this plant density, is application of SI when the percentage of soil water depletion reached 75% of the maximum available water in the root zone. In the future, dry spells during the Belg season increase and this has a negative effect on maize production. The predicted lower maize production due to the changing rainfall is only partly compensated by the expected increase in CO2 concentration. The shifting of sowing period of maize from the current Belg season (mostly April or May) to the first month of Kiremt season (June) can offset the predicted yield reduction caused by climate change. SI has a marginal effect in good rainfall years but using 94-111 mm of SI can avoid total crop failure in drought years. Hence, SI is an interesting option to improve food security in the Rift Valley dry lands of Ethiopia. Key words: Adaptation; Climate change; Central Rift Valley; Dry spell; Supplemental irrigation.

  18. A geographical information system-based multicriteria evaluation to map areas at risk for Rift Valley fever vector-borne transmission in Italy.

    PubMed

    Tran, A; Ippoliti, C; Balenghien, T; Conte, A; Gely, M; Calistri, P; Goffredo, M; Baldet, T; Chevalier, V

    2013-11-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a severe mosquito-borne disease that is caused by a Phlebovirus (Bunyaviridae) and affects domestic ruminants and humans. Recently, its distribution widened, threatening Europe. The probability of the introduction and large-scale spread of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in Europe is low, but localized RVF outbreaks may occur in areas where populations of ruminants and potential vectors are present. In this study, we assumed the introduction of the virus into Italy and focused on the risk of vector-borne transmission of RVFV to three main European potential hosts (cattle, sheep and goats). Five main potential mosquito vectors belonging to the Culex and Aedes genera that are present in Italy were identified in a literature review. We first modelled the geographical distribution of these five species based on expert knowledge and using land cover as a proxy of mosquito presence. The mosquito distribution maps were compared with field mosquito collections from Italy to validate the model. Next, the risk of RVFV transmission was modelled using a multicriteria evaluation (MCE) approach, integrating expert knowledge and the results of a literature review on host sensitivity and vector competence, feeding behaviour and abundance. A sensitivity analysis was performed to assess the robustness of the results with respect to expert choices. The resulting maps include (i) five maps of the vector distribution, (ii) a map of suitable areas for vector-borne transmission of RVFV and (iii) a map of the risk of RVFV vector-borne transmission to sensitive hosts given a viral introduction. Good agreement was found between the modelled presence probability and the observed presence or absence of each vector species. The resulting RVF risk map highlighted strong spatial heterogeneity and could be used to target surveillance. In conclusion, the geographical information system (GIS)-based MCE served as a valuable framework and a flexible tool for mapping the

  19. N-Glycans on the Rift Valley Fever Virus Envelope Glycoproteins Gn and Gc Redundantly Support Viral Infection via DC-SIGN.

    PubMed

    Phoenix, Inaia; Nishiyama, Shoko; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Hill, Terence E; Huante, Matthew B; Slack, Olga A L; Carpio, Victor H; Freiberg, Alexander N; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever is a mosquito-transmitted, zoonotic disease that infects humans and ruminants. Dendritic cell specific intercellular adhesion molecule 3 (ICAM-3) grabbing non-integrin (DC-SIGN) acts as a receptor for members of the phlebovirus genus. The Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) glycoproteins (Gn/Gc) encode five putative N-glycan sequons (asparagine (N)-any amino acid (X)-serine (S)/threonine (T)) at positions: N438 (Gn), and N794, N829, N1035, and N1077 (Gc). The N-glycosylation profile and significance in viral infection via DC-SIGN have not been elucidated. Gc N-glycosylation was first evaluated by using Gc asparagine (N) to glutamine (Q) mutants. Subsequently, we generated a series of recombinant RVFV MP-12 strain mutants, which encode N-to-Q mutations, and the infectivity of each mutant in Jurkat cells stably expressing DC-SIGN was evaluated. Results showed that Gc N794, N1035, and N1077 were N-glycosylated but N829 was not. Gc N1077 was heterogeneously N-glycosylated. RVFV Gc made two distinct N-glycoforms: "Gc-large" and "Gc-small", and N1077 was responsible for "Gc-large" band. RVFV showed increased infection of cells expressing DC-SIGN compared to cells lacking DC-SIGN. Infection via DC-SIGN was increased in the presence of either Gn N438 or Gc N1077. Our study showed that N-glycans on the Gc and Gn surface glycoproteins redundantly support RVFV infection via DC-SIGN. PMID:27223297

  20. Fault Growth and Propagation and its Effect on Surficial Processes within the Incipient Okavango Rift Zone, Northwest Botswana, Africa (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atekwana, E. A.

    2010-12-01

    The Okavango Rift Zone (ORZ) is suggested to be a zone of incipient continental rifting occuring at the distal end of the southwestern branch of the East African Rift System (EARS), therefore providing a unique opportunity to investigate neotectonic processes during the early stages of rifting. We used geophysical (aeromagnetic, magnetotelluric), Shuttle Radar Tomography Mission, Digital Elevation Model (SRTM-DEM), and sedimentological data to characterize the growth and propagation of faults associated with continental extension in the ORZ, and to elucidate the interplay between neotectonics and surficial processes. The results suggest that: (1) fault growth occurs by along axis linkage of fault segments, (2) an immature border fault is developing through the process of “Fault Piracy” by fault-linkages between major fault systems, (3) significant discrepancies exits between the height of fault scarps and the throws across the faults compared to their lengths in the basement, (4) utilization of preexisting zones of weakness allowed the development of very long faults (> 25-100 km) at a very early stage of continental rifting, explaining the apparent paradox between the fault length versus throw for this young rift, (5) active faults are characterized by conductive anomalies resulting from fluids, whereas, inactive faults show no conductivity anomaly; and 6) sedimentlogical data reveal a major perturbation in lake sedimentation between 41 ka and 27 ka. The sedimentation perturbation is attributed to faulting associated with the rifting and may have resulted in the alteration of hydrology forming the modern day Okavango delta. We infer that this time period may represent the age of the latest rift reactivation and fault growth and propagation within the ORZ.

  1. Continental rifting: a planetary perspective

    SciTech Connect

    Muehlberger, W.R.

    1985-01-01

    The only inner planet that has abundant evidence of regional extension, and the consequent generation of rifts in the earth. The absence of plate motion on the other inner planets limits their rifts to localized bulges or subsidence areas. The rifting of oceanic lithosphere is seldom preserved in the geological record. Thus, such rifting must be inferred via plate tectonic interpretation: if there is rifting, then there must be subduction whose results are commonly well preserved. Modern continental rifts are found in many tectonic settings: continental breakup, extension transverse to collisional stresses, or wide regions of nearly uniform extension. Recognition of these settings in older rocks becomes more difficult the farther back in geologic time you travel. Rift basin fillings typically show rapid lateral and vertical facies and thickness changes, bimodal volcanism, and distinctive rift-drift sequences. Proterozoic rifts and aulacogens are well-documented in North America; ex. Keweenawan, western margin of Labrador fold belt, Belt-Uinta and the Wopmay-Athapuscow regions. Documented Archean rifts are rare. In Quebec, the truncated margin of the Minto craton bounded on the south by a 2.8 Ga greenstone belt implies an earlier rift event. The oldest proposed rift dated at 3.0 Ga contains the Pongola Supergroup in southeastern Africa. The presence of Archean dikes demonstrates a rigid crust and andesites as old as 3.5 Ga imply plate tectonics and thus, at least, oceanic rifting.

  2. The complex post-rift evolution of the South Atlantic margin, South Africa: new insights from joint inversion of apatite (U-Th)/He and fission track thermochronometry.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wildman, Mark; Brown, Roderick; Persano, Cristina; Beucher, Romain; Stuart, Finlay

    2013-04-01

    The continental edge of southwestern Africa has long been seen as a type example of a high elevation passive margin, with its characteristic topography forming during or shortly after rifting (c. 130 Ma). Recent work along the South Atlantic passive margin has highlighted the importance of interactions between rift-tectonics, mantle flow and dynamic topography on controlling margin evolution, however, the temporal relationship between these processes is still poorly understood. There is now increasing evidence from satellite imagery, onshore field observations (e.g. Viola et al., 2012) and offshore sedimentary basin analysis (e.g. Hirsch et al., 2010) that suggests that these processes have resulted in a much more complex structural and thermal history along the margin than previously thought. A critical step towards developing a better understanding of the post-rift evolution of this margin is to quantify the surface response (i.e. uplift and erosion) to these major structural and thermal events. Apatite fission track analysis (AFTA) has been used world-wide as a powerful means of extracting quantitative constraints on the timing and rate of major episodes of onshore denudation. Previous AFTA studies in SW Africa have identified two distinct cooling events occurred during early and late Cretaceous, respectively. However, in places AFT ages vary significantly over relatively short distances and this has been interpreted to indicate local differential erosion levels controlled by tectonic displacements related to fault reactivation. A limitation of the AFT system is that it is sensitive to a temperature range of c. 120-60°C and therefore is unable to evaluate the magnitude of denudation episodes where the amounts are less than c. 1.5-2 km. So while the Cretaceous history of erosion is well established from existing AFTA data, the details of the timing and amount of erosion occurring during the Cenozoic remain relatively poorly constrained. The apatite (U

  3. Evolution of the Lake Victoria basin in the context of coeval rift initiation in East Africa: a 3D numerical model approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wichura, Henry; Quinteros, Javier; Melnick, Daniel; Brune, Sascha; Schwanghart, Wolfgang; Strecker, Manfred R.

    2015-04-01

    trends. The model shows that elevation differences of 120 to 180 m between the plateau interior and bordering rift shoulders are pronounced enough to form a closed basin after 6.5 Ma of extension. By that time the catchment area is already comparable to the present-day Lake Victoria catchment. Moreover, the final modeled topography, including 1000 m of dynamic and 500 m of pre-plume topography, yields a base basin elevation of 1110 m, which is also in good agreement with the present-day elevation of Lake Victoria. The combined effects of the formation of an extensive lacustrine depositional environment in the interior of the EAP after 6.5 Ma and rift-shoulder uplift may have forced far-reaching environmental impacts. These may have included the onset of the Lake Victoria microclimate, the influence of the basin and surrounding orographic barriers on precipitation patterns in East Africa, and the establishment of a unique flora and fauna.

  4. Thermo-rheological aspects of crustal evolution during continental breakup and melt intrusion: The Main Ethiopian Rift, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lavecchia, Alessio; Beekman, Fred; Clark, Stuart R.; Cloetingh, Sierd A. P. L.

    2016-08-01

    The Cenozoic-Quaternary Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) is characterized by extended magmatic activity. Although magmatism has been recognized as a key element in the process of continental breakup, the interaction between melts and intruded lithosphere is still poorly understood. We have performed a 2D thermo-rheological modeling study of continental crust incorporating rheological variations due to melt intrusion-related thermal perturbation. The model is calibrated based on the characteristics of lithologies occurring in the MER and its extensional history, and includes the effect of metamorphism and anatexis on crustal strength and rheological features. During Miocene early rift phases strain in the MER was mainly accommodated through rift border faults, whereas Pliocene-to-recent extension history is characterized by magma assisted rifting with most strain accommodated across magmatic segments in the rift axis. Consequently, very little strain is distributed in the old Pan-African to Paleogene crust during Pliocene to Holocene times. The magmatic activity along the rift axis created ≈ 20 km thick magmatic segments, with growth rate estimated to range from ≈ 3.5 mm yr- 1 to ≈ 6 mm yr- 1. Our model suggests that the strain transfer from Miocene rift border faults to magmatic segments was favored by a moderate increase in crustal strength, due to prograde metamorphism subsequent to the melt-induced thermal perturbation. Under such conditions, crustal stretching may not constitute an effective extension mechanism, thus strain may be preferentially accommodated by melt injection along hot, partially molten magmatic segments. Anatexis has been detected in our simulations, with melt fractions sufficient to break-up the crust solid framework and migrate. This determines local variations of rheological behavior and may induce seismicity. However, resulting melt percentages are not sufficient to induce widespread, crust-derived volcanic activity. Subsequently, volcanism

  5. Sensitivity and specificity of real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, histopathology, and immunohistochemical labeling for the detection of Rift Valley fever virus in naturally infected cattle and sheep.

    PubMed

    Odendaal, Lieza; Fosgate, Geoffrey T; Romito, Marco; Coetzer, Jacobus A W; Clift, Sarah J

    2014-01-01

    Real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (real-time RT-PCR), histopathology, and immunohistochemical labeling (IHC) were performed on liver specimens from 380 naturally infected cattle and sheep necropsied during the 2010 Rift Valley fever (RVF) epidemic in South Africa. Sensitivity (Se) and specificity (Sp) of real-time RT-PCR, histopathology, and IHC were estimated in a latent-class model using a Bayesian framework. The Se and Sp of real-time RT-PCR were estimated as 97.4% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 95.2-98.8%) and 71.7% (95% CI = 65-77.9%) respectively. The Se and Sp of histopathology were estimated as 94.6% (95% CI = 91-97.2%) and 92.3% (95% CI = 87.6-95.8%), respectively. The Se and Sp of IHC were estimated as 97.6% (95% CI = 93.9-99.8%) and 99.4% (95% CI = 96.9-100%), respectively. Decreased Sp of real-time RT-PCR was ascribed to cross-contamination of samples. Stratified analysis of the data suggested variations in test accuracy with fetuses and severely autolyzed specimens. The Sp of histopathology in fetuses (83%) was 9.3% lower than the sample population (92.3%). The Se of IHC decreased from 97.6% to 81.5% in the presence of severe autolysis. The diagnostic Se and Sp of histopathology was higher than expected, confirming the value of routine postmortem examinations and histopathology of liver specimens. Aborted fetuses, however, should be screened using a variety of tests in areas endemic for RVF, and results from severely autolyzed specimens should be interpreted with caution. The most feasible testing option for countries lacking suitably equipped laboratories seems to be routine histology in combination with IHC.

  6. Tectonic Evolution of the Northern Malawi rift, East Africa: Structural Controls on Sediment Dispersal in a Large Lake Basin.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mortimer, E.; Paton, D.; Scholz, C.; Strecker, M.

    2005-12-01

    The Malawi Rift is an integral part of the East African Rift system (EARs), the type example of a rift system in its youthful stages of development. Understanding the spatio-temporal evolution of this rift system provides insights into the past histories and controls on more ancient rift basins. Fundamental questions remain regarding the structural styles, partitioning, and sediment dispersal patterns within large lacustrine basins that are common to young rifts. Such basins are particularly useful recorders of climatic fluctuations. In areas with pronounced climatic variability and high evaporation/precipitation ratios this may lead to, often transient, basin isolation that may dramatically affect sediment and facies distribution. We investigate the structural evolution and sedimentation patterns of the North basin, Malawi Rift. We utilise two seismic reflection data sets: the first, collected by project PROBE, records the entire basin-fill (Sequences 1-3) at medium resolution; the second provides a closely-spaced high-resolution survey of the past ~1 Ma (Sequence 3). These data document the development of the basin-bounding and intra-basin faults. Throughout its history, the basin-bounding fault has accommodated the greatest strain and therefore exerted the fundamental control on the distribution of sediment within the rift. Present-day sediments enter the basin axially, although there is evidence that transverse supply was also important in the past. We identify 11 intra-basin structures that strike parallel or sub-parallel to this border fault. These intra-basin faults, active from the earliest stages, have initial segment lengths of ~30 km, but rapidly reach lengths in excess of 80 km in the north of the basin, and 60 km in the south. Much of the sedimentation along the faults occurred during Sequence 2 (~2.7-1.6 Ma), a period of relative over-filling of the basin. While the basin-bounding fault controls the overall sediment architecture, all 11 intra

  7. Mapping of the major structures of the African rift system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mohr, P. A. (Principal Investigator)

    1973-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. ERTS-1 imagery of the African rift system has already proved of great value in structural geological studies. One of the interesting megastructures expressed on the imagery occurs some 40 km east of the eastern margin of the main Ethiopian rift, in Arussi province, and extending between latitude 71/2 and 81/4 deg N. The Badda-Encuolo ridge proves to have been a line of major Tertiary volcanism and probably supplied the thick Trap Series flood basalt sequence exposed farther east in the canyons of the Webi Shebeli drainage system. The ridge itself was built up by the waning activity of the Sagatu line of volcanism. Serendipitious has been the discovery on Mt. Badda of several deeply glaciated valleys, many of which show clearly on the ERTS-1 imagery. It seems that Mt. Badda was one of the most important glacial centers in eastern Africa during the Pleistocene. Three major late-Tertiary trachytic centers lie between the Badda-Encuolo ridge and the rift valley. The relationships of these three volcanoes to each other and to the rift faulting is revealed for the first time by the ERTS-1 imagery, as is the form of the cladera of Baltata and the crater of Chilalo.

  8. East African Rift

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    Places where the earth's crust has formed deep fissures and the plates have begun to move apart develop rift structures in which elongate blocks have subsided relative to the blocks on either side. The East African Rift is a world-famous example of such rifting. It is characterized by 1) topographic deep valleys in the rift zone, 2) sheer escarpments along the faulted walls of the rift zone, 3) a chain of lakes within the rift, most of the lakes highly saline due to evaporation in the hot temperatures characteristic of climates near the equator, 4) voluminous amounts of volcanic rocks that have flowed from faults along the sides of the rift, and 5) volcanic cones where magma flow was most intense. This example in Kenya displays most of these features near Lake Begoria.

    The image was acquired December 18, 2002, covers an area of 40.5 x 32 km, and is located at 0.1 degrees north latitude, 36.1 degrees east longitude.

    The U.S. science team is located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Science Mission Directorate.

  9. The genus Atheris (Serpentes: Viperidae) in East Africa: phylogeny and the role of rifting and climate in shaping the current pattern of species diversity.

    PubMed

    Menegon, M; Loader, S P; Marsden, S J; Branch, W R; Davenport, T R B; Ursenbacher, S

    2014-10-01

    Past climatic and tectonic events are believed to have strongly influenced species diversity in the Eastern Afromontane Biodiversity Hotspot. We investigated the phylogenetic relationships and historical biogeography of the East African genus Atheris (Serpentes: Viperidae), and explored temporal and spatial relationships between Atheris species across Africa, and the impact of palaeoclimatic fluctuations and tectonic movements on cladogenesis of the genus. Using mitochondrial sequence data, the phylogeny of East African species of Atheris shows congruent temporal patterns that link diversification to major tectonic and aridification events within East Africa over the last 15million years (my). Our results are consistent with a scenario of a delayed direct west-east colonisation of the Eastern Arc Mountains of Atheris by the formation of the western rift. Based on the phylogenetic patterns, this terrestrial, forest-associated genus has dispersed into East Africa across a divided route, on both west-southeasterly and west-northeasterly directions (a C-shaped route). Cladogenesis in the Eastern Arc Mountains and Southern Highlands of Tanzania corresponds to late Miocene and Plio-Pleistocene climatic shifts. Taxonomically, our data confirmed the monophyly of Atheris as currently defined, and reveal four major East African clades, three of which occur in discrete mountain ranges. Possible cryptic taxa are identified in the Atheris rungweensis and A. ceratophora clades.

  10. A temperature-limited assessment of the risk of Rift Valley fever transmission and establishment in the continental United States of America.

    PubMed

    Konrad, Sarah K; Miller, Scott N

    2012-05-01

    The rapid spread of West Nile virus across North America after its introduction in 1999 highlights the potential for foreign arboviruses to become established in the United States of America. Of particular concern is Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), which has been responsible for multiple African epidemics resulting in death of both humans and livestock, as well as major economic disruption due to livestock loss and trade restrictions. Modern globalization, travel, and commerce allow viruses to easily jump from one continent to another; and it is likely only a matter of time before RVFV reaches North American shores. We used a degree-day model in combination with livestock population data and a pathways analysis to identify regions and times where RVFV is most likely to enter and become established in the United States of America. Transmission risk of the disease varies across the country from 325 annual risk days in parts of Florida to zero risk days in the far North and in high mountain regions. Areas of particular concern are where there are a high number of possible tranmission days, a large livestock population, and proximity to likely locations for the disease to enter the country via mosquito vector or human host. These areas should be monitored closely during transmission "risk seasons" so that if the virus does enter the country and begins to become established, it can be quickly controlled and eliminated before spreading further. Areas most at risk include the Baltimore and New York City metro areas as well as much of the region between these urban centers; most of Texas, especially around Houston; Florida; Atlanta; southwest Nebraska; southern California and Arizona; and the central valley of California.

  11. High-Throughput Screening Using a Whole-Cell Virus Replication Reporter Gene Assay to Identify Inhibitory Compounds against Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection.

    PubMed

    Islam, Md Koushikul; Baudin, Maria; Eriksson, Jonas; Öberg, Christopher; Habjan, Matthias; Weber, Friedemann; Överby, Anna K; Ahlm, Clas; Evander, Magnus

    2016-04-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an emerging virus that causes serious illness in humans and livestock. There are no approved vaccines or treatments for humans. The purpose of the study was to identify inhibitory compounds of RVFV infection without any preconceived idea of the mechanism of action. A whole-cell-based high-throughput drug screening assay was developed to screen 28,437 small chemical compounds targeting RVFV infection. To accomplish both speed and robustness, a replication-competent NSs-deleted RVFV expressing a fluorescent reporter gene was developed. Inhibition of fluorescence intensity was quantified by spectrophotometry and related to virus infection in human lung epithelial cells (A549). Cell toxicity was assessed by the Resazurin cell viability assay. After primary screening, 641 compounds were identified that inhibited RVFV infection by ≥80%, with ≥50% cell viability at 50 µM concentration. These compounds were subjected to a second screening regarding dose-response profiles, and 63 compounds with ≥60% inhibition of RVFV infection at 3.12 µM compound concentration and ≥50% cell viability at 25 µM were considered hits. Of these, six compounds with high inhibitory activity were identified. In conclusion, the high-throughput assay could efficiently and safely identify several promising compounds that inhibited RVFV infection.

  12. Mosquito vectors of the 1998-1999 outbreak of Rift Valley Fever and other arboviruses (Bagaza, Sanar, Wesselsbron and West Nile) in Mauritania and Senegal.

    PubMed

    Diallo, M; Nabeth, P; Ba, K; Sall, A A; Ba, Y; Mondo, M; Girault, L; Abdalahi, M O; Mathiot, C

    2005-06-01

    Following an outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in south-eastern Mauritania during 1998, entomological investigations were conducted for 2 years in the affected parts of Senegal and Mauritania, spanning the Sénégal River basin. A total of 92 787 mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae), belonging to 10 genera and 41 species, were captured in light traps. In Senegal, Culex poicilipes (41%) and Mansonia uniformis (39%) were the most abundant species caught, whereas Aedes vexans (77%) and Cx. poicilipes (15%) predominated in Mauritania. RVF virus was isolated from 63 pools of Cx. poicilipes: 36 from Senegal in 1998 and 27 from Mauritania in 1999. These results are the first field evidence of Cx. poicilipes naturally infected with RVFV, and the first isolations of this virus from mosquitoes in Mauritania - the main West African epidemic and epizootic area. Additional arbovirus isolates comprised 25 strains of Bagaza (BAG) from Aedes fowleri, Culex neavei and Cx. poicilipes; 67 Sanar (ArD 66707) from Cx. poicilipes; 51 Wesselsbron (WSL) from Ae. vexans and 30 strains of West Nile (WN) from Ma. uniformis, showing differential specific virus-vector associations in the circulation activity of these five arboviruses.

  13. Protection against Rift Valley fever virus infection in mice upon administration of interferon-inducing RNA transcripts from the FMDV genome.

    PubMed

    Lorenzo, Gema; Rodríguez-Pulido, Miguel; López-Gil, Elena; Sobrino, Francisco; Borrego, Belén; Sáiz, Margarita; Brun, Alejandro

    2014-09-01

    In this work we have addressed the effect of synthetic, non-infectious, RNA transcripts, mimicking structural domains of the non-coding regions (NCRs) of the foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) genome on the infection of mice with Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV). Groups of 5 mice were inoculated intraperitoneally (i.p.) with 200 μg of synthetic RNA resembling the 5'-terminal S region, the internal ribosome entry site (IRES) or the 3'-NCR of the FMDV genome. RNA inoculation was performed 24h before (-24 h), 24 h after (+24 h) or simultaneously to the challenge with a lethal dose of RVFV. Administration of the IRES RNA afforded higher survival rates than administration of S or 3'NCR transcripts either at -24h or +24h after challenge. In contrast, when RNA inoculation and viral challenge were performed simultaneously, all mice survived in both IRES- and 3'NCR-inoculated groups, with an 80% survival in mice receiving the S RNA. Among survivors, a complete correlation between significant anti-RVFV circulating antibody titers and resistance to a second lethal challenge with the virus was observed, supporting a limited viral replication in the RNA-inoculated animals upon the first challenge. All three RNA transcripts were able to induce the production of systemic antiviral and pro-inflammatory cytokines. These data show that triggering of intracellular pathogen sensing pathways constitutes a promising approach towards development of novel RVF preventive or therapeutic strategies. PMID:24973761

  14. The distribution of Rift Valley fever virus in the mosquito Culex pipiens as revealed by viral titration of dissected organs and tissues.

    PubMed

    Faran, M E; Romoser, W S; Routier, R G; Bailey, C L

    1988-08-01

    Distribution of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) was studied in the mosquito Culex pipiens. Mosquitoes were dissected on days 1-7 after an infectious bloodmeal, and RVFV plaque assays were performed on the legs, posterior midgut, ovaries, salivary glands, thoracic ganglia, and remaining organs and tissues (remnants). On days 7-12 and 14 following an infectious bloodmeal, mosquitoes were tested for their ability to transmit virus and then dissected. Dissemination (systemic infection) rates averaged 22% on days 1-14 and transmission rates 33% on days 7-14. There were no significant differences in the viral titers of midgut samples among the nondisseminated infected (virus limited to alimentary canal), disseminated infected nontransmitting, and transmitting groups of mosquitoes. The sequence of infection of the organs and tissues studied appeared to be as follows: midgut, hemolymph, remnants: salivary glands, ovaries, and thoracic ganglia. Some individuals were found to have disseminated infections as early as 12 hr following an infectious bloodmeal. Trauma, simulated by vigorous shaking immediately following the viremic bloodmeal, did not affect either infection or dissemination rates.

  15. Single-Dose Intranasal Treatment with DEF201 (Adenovirus Vectored Consensus Interferon) Prevents Lethal Disease Due to Rift Valley Fever Virus Challenge

    PubMed Central

    Gowen, Brian B.; Ennis, Jane; Bailey, Kevin W.; Vest, Zachary; Scharton, Dionna; Sefing, Eric J.; Turner, Jeffrey D.

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes severe disease in humans and ungulates. The virus can be transmitted by mosquitoes, direct contact with infected tissues or fluids, or aerosol, making it a significant biological threat for which there is no approved vaccine or therapeutic. Herein we describe the evaluation of DEF201, an adenovirus-vectored interferon alpha which addresses the limitations of recombinant interferon alpha protein (cost, short half-life), as a pre- and post-exposure treatment in a lethal hamster RVFV challenge model. DEF201 was delivered intranasally to stimulate mucosal immunity and effectively bypass any pre-existing immunity to the vector. Complete protection against RVFV infection was observed from a single dose of DEF201 administered one or seven days prior to challenge while all control animals succumbed within three days of infection. Efficacy of treatment administered two weeks prior to challenge was limited. Post‑exposure, DEF201 was able to confer significant protection when dosed at 30 min or 6 h, but not at 24 h post-RVFV challenge. Protection was associated with reductions in serum and tissue viral loads. Our findings suggest that DEF201 may be a useful countermeasure against RVFV infection and further demonstrates its broad-spectrum capacity to stimulate single dose protective immunity. PMID:24662673

  16. Cross-Sectional Survey of Rift Valley Fever Virus Exposure in Bodhei Village Located in a Transitional Coastal Forest Habitat in Lamu County, Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Muiruri, Samuel; Kabiru, Ephantus W.; Muchiri, Eric M.; Hussein, Hassan; Kagondu, Frederick; LaBeaud, A. Desirée; King, Charles H.

    2015-01-01

    Few studies have focused on Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) transmission in less arid, transitional landscapes surrounding known high-risk regions. The objective of this study was to identify evidence of RVFV exposure in Bodhei Village in a forested area at the edge of the RVFV-epidemic Garissa region. In a household cluster-based survey conducted between epidemics in early 2006, 211 participants were enrolled. Overall seroprevalence for anti-RVFV was high (18%) and comparable with rates in the more arid, dense brush regions farther north. Seroprevalence of adults was 28%, whereas that of children was significantly lower (3%; P < 0.001); the youngest positive child was age 3 years. Males were more likely to be seropositive than females (25% versus 11%; P < 0.01), and animal husbandry activities (birthing, sheltering, and butchering) were strongly associated with seropositivity. The results confirm that significant RVFV transmission occurs outside of recognized high-risk areas and independent of known epidemic periods. PMID:25535309

  17. Enemies and turncoats: bovine tuberculosis exposes pathogenic potential of Rift Valley fever virus in a common host, African buffalo (Syncerus caffer)

    PubMed Central

    Beechler, B. R.; Manore, C. A.; Reininghaus, B.; O'Neal, D.; Gorsich, E. E.; Ezenwa, V. O.; Jolles, A. E.

    2015-01-01

    The ubiquity and importance of parasite co-infections in populations of free-living animals is beginning to be recognized, but few studies have demonstrated differential fitness effects of single infection versus co-infection in free-living populations. We investigated interactions between the emerging bacterial disease bovine tuberculosis (BTB) and the previously existing viral disease Rift Valley fever (RVF) in a competent reservoir host, African buffalo, combining data from a natural outbreak of RVF in captive buffalo at a buffalo breeding facility in 2008 with data collected from a neighbouring free-living herd of African buffalo in Kruger National Park. RVF infection was twice as likely in individual BTB+ buffalo as in BTB− buffalo, which, according to a mathematical model, may increase RVF outbreak size at the population level. In addition, co-infection was associated with a far higher rate of fetal abortion than other infection states. Immune interactions between BTB and RVF may underlie both of these interactions, since animals with BTB had decreased innate immunity and increased pro-inflammatory immune responses. This study is one of the first to demonstrate how the consequences of emerging infections extend beyond direct effects on host health, potentially altering the dynamics and fitness effects of infectious diseases that had previously existed in the ecosystem on free-ranging wildlife populations. PMID:25788592

  18. Climate impacts on environmental risks evaluated from space: a contribution to social benefits within the GEOSS Health Area: The case of Rift Valley Fever in Senegal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tourre, Y. M.

    2009-12-01

    Climate and environment vary on many spatio-temporal scales, including climate change, with impacts on ecosystems, vector-borne diseases and public health worldwide. This study is to enable societal benefits from a conceptual approach by mapping climatic and environmental conditions from space and understanding the mechanisms within the Health Social Benefit GEOSS area. The case study is for Rift Valley Fever (RVF) epidemics in Senegal is presented. Ponds contributing to mosquitoes’ thriving, were identified from remote sensing using high-resolution SPOT-5 satellite images. Additional data on ponds’ dynamics and rainfall events (obtained from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission) were combined with hydrological in-situ data. Localization of vulnerable hosts such as parked cattle (from QuickBird satellite) are also used. Dynamic spatio-temporal distribution of Aedes vexans density (one of the main RVF vectors) is based on the total rainfall amount and ponds’ dynamics. While Zones Potentially Occupied by Mosquitoes (ZPOM) are mapped, detailed risks areas, i.e. zones where hazards and vulnerability occur, are expressed in percentages of parks where cattle is potentially exposed to mosquitoes’ bites. This new conceptual approach, using remote-sensing techniques belonging to GEOSS, simply relies upon rainfall distribution also evaluated from space. It is meant to contribute to the implementation of integrated operational early warning system within the health application communities since climatic and environmental conditions (both natural and anthropogenic) are changing rapidly.

  19. Concentrations and human health risk assessment of organochlorine pesticides in edible fish species from a Rift Valley lake-Lake Ziway, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Yohannes, Yared B; Ikenaka, Yoshinori; Saengtienchai, Aksorn; Watanabe, Kensuke P; Nakayama, Shouta M M; Ishizuka, Mayumi

    2014-08-01

    Fish consumption is known to have several health benefits for humans. However, the accumulation of organic pollutants, like organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) could pose health hazards. Thus, OCPs in edible fish species (Oreochromis niloticus, Tilapia zillii, Carassius spp., and Clarias gariepinus) from Lake Ziway, an Ethiopian Rift Valley Lake were investigated to assess the potential human health hazards of these contaminants. Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethanes (DDTs), hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs), chlordanes, and heptachlors were observed with ΣOCPs concentration ranging from 1.41 to 63.8 ng g(-1) ww. DDTs were the predominant contaminants (0.9 to 61.9 ng g(-1) ww), followed by HCHs. The predominance of DDTs may be attributed to their current use in vector control and contamination from past usage. The estimated daily intakes (EDIs) of OCPs from all fish species were much lower than the acceptable daily intakes (ADIs), indicating that consumption of fish is at little risk to human health at present. However, the cancer risk estimates in the area of concern and the hazard ratios (HRs) of HCHs, DDTs, and heptachlors exceeded the threshold value of one, indicating daily exposure to these compounds is a potential concern. This may result in a lifetime cancer risk greater than of 1 in 10(6). PMID:24836883

  20. Rift Valley Fever Virus Incorporates the 78 kDa Glycoprotein into Virions Matured in Mosquito C6/36 Cells

    PubMed Central

    Weingartl, Hana M.; Zhang, Shunzhen; Marszal, Peter; McGreevy, Alan; Burton, Lynn; Wilson, William C.

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae is a zoonotic arthropod-borne virus able to transition between distant host species, causing potentially severe disease in humans and ruminants. Viral proteins are encoded by three genomic segments, with the medium M segment coding for four proteins: nonstructural NSm protein, two glycoproteins Gn and Gc and large 78 kDa glycoprotein (LGp) of unknown function. Goat anti-RVFV polyclonal antibody and mouse monoclonal antibody, generated against a polypeptide unique to the LGp within the RVFV proteome, detected this protein in gradient purified RVFV ZH501 virions harvested from mosquito C6/36 cells but not in virions harvested from the mammalian Vero E6 cells. The incorporation of LGp into the mosquito cell line - matured virions was confirmed by immune-electron microscopy. The LGp was incorporated into the virions immediately during the first passage in C6/36 cells of Vero E6 derived virus. Our data indicate that LGp is a structural protein in C6/36 mosquito cell generated virions. The protein may aid the transmission from the mosquitoes to the ruminant host, with a possible role in replication of RVFV in the mosquito host. To our knowledge, this is a first report of different protein composition between virions formed in insect C6/36 versus mammalian Vero E6 cells. PMID:24489907

  1. Population Genetics of Two Key Mosquito Vectors of Rift Valley Fever Virus Reveals New Insights into the Changing Disease Outbreak Patterns in Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Tchouassi, David P.; Bastos, Armanda D. S.; Sole, Catherine L.; Diallo, Mawlouth; Lutomiah, Joel; Mutisya, James; Mulwa, Francis; Borgemeister, Christian; Sang, Rosemary; Torto, Baldwyn

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks in Kenya have increased in frequency and range to include northeastern Kenya where viruses are increasingly being isolated from known (Aedes mcintoshi) and newly-associated (Ae. ochraceus) vectors. The factors contributing to these changing outbreak patterns are unclear and the population genetic structure of key vectors and/or specific virus-vector associations, in particular, are under-studied. By conducting mitochondrial and nuclear DNA analyses on >220 Kenyan specimens of Ae. mcintoshi and Ae. ochraceus, we uncovered high levels of vector complexity which may partly explain the disease outbreak pattern. Results indicate that Ae. mcintoshi consists of a species complex with one of the member species being unique to the newly-established RVF outbreak-prone northeastern region of Kenya, whereas Ae. ochraceus is a homogeneous population that appears to be undergoing expansion. Characterization of specimens from a RVF-prone site in Senegal, where Ae. ochraceus is a primary vector, revealed direct genetic links between the two Ae. ochraceus populations from both countries. Our data strongly suggest that unlike Ae. mcintoshi, Ae. ochraceus appears to be a relatively recent, single 'introduction' into Kenya. These results, together with increasing isolations from this vector, indicate that Ae. ochraceus will likely be of greater epidemiological importance in future RVF outbreaks in Kenya. Furthermore, the overall vector complexity calls into question the feasibility of mosquito population control approaches reliant on genetic modification. PMID:25474018

  2. A ΩXaV motif in the Rift Valley fever virus NSs protein is essential for degrading p62, forming nuclear filaments and virulence.

    PubMed

    Cyr, Normand; de la Fuente, Cynthia; Lecoq, Lauriane; Guendel, Irene; Chabot, Philippe R; Kehn-Hall, Kylene; Omichinski, James G

    2015-05-12

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a single-stranded RNA virus capable of inducing fatal hemorrhagic fever in humans. A key component of RVFV virulence is its ability to form nuclear filaments through interactions between the viral nonstructural protein NSs and the host general transcription factor TFIIH. Here, we identify an interaction between a ΩXaV motif in NSs and the p62 subunit of TFIIH. This motif in NSs is similar to ΩXaV motifs found in nucleotide excision repair (NER) factors and transcription factors known to interact with p62. Structural and biophysical studies demonstrate that NSs binds to p62 in a similar manner as these other factors. Functional studies in RVFV-infected cells show that the ΩXaV motif is required for both nuclear filament formation and degradation of p62. Consistent with the fact that the RVFV can be distinguished from other Bunyaviridae-family viruses due to its ability to form nuclear filaments in infected cells, the motif is absent in the NSs proteins of other Bunyaviridae-family viruses. Taken together, our studies demonstrate that p62 binding to NSs through the ΩXaV motif is essential for degrading p62, forming nuclear filaments and enhancing RVFV virulence. In addition, these results show how the RVFV incorporates a simple motif into the NSs protein that enables it to functionally mimic host cell proteins that bind the p62 subunit of TFIIH. PMID:25918396

  3. A ΩXaV motif in the Rift Valley fever virus NSs protein is essential for degrading p62, forming nuclear filaments and virulence

    PubMed Central

    Cyr, Normand; de la Fuente, Cynthia; Lecoq, Lauriane; Guendel, Irene; Chabot, Philippe R.; Kehn-Hall, Kylene; Omichinski, James G.

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a single-stranded RNA virus capable of inducing fatal hemorrhagic fever in humans. A key component of RVFV virulence is its ability to form nuclear filaments through interactions between the viral nonstructural protein NSs and the host general transcription factor TFIIH. Here, we identify an interaction between a ΩXaV motif in NSs and the p62 subunit of TFIIH. This motif in NSs is similar to ΩXaV motifs found in nucleotide excision repair (NER) factors and transcription factors known to interact with p62. Structural and biophysical studies demonstrate that NSs binds to p62 in a similar manner as these other factors. Functional studies in RVFV-infected cells show that the ΩXaV motif is required for both nuclear filament formation and degradation of p62. Consistent with the fact that the RVFV can be distinguished from other Bunyaviridae-family viruses due to its ability to form nuclear filaments in infected cells, the motif is absent in the NSs proteins of other Bunyaviridae-family viruses. Taken together, our studies demonstrate that p62 binding to NSs through the ΩXaV motif is essential for degrading p62, forming nuclear filaments and enhancing RVFV virulence. In addition, these results show how the RVFV incorporates a simple motif into the NSs protein that enables it to functionally mimic host cell proteins that bind the p62 subunit of TFIIH. PMID:25918396

  4. High-Throughput Screening Using a Whole-Cell Virus Replication Reporter Gene Assay to Identify Inhibitory Compounds against Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection.

    PubMed

    Islam, Md Koushikul; Baudin, Maria; Eriksson, Jonas; Öberg, Christopher; Habjan, Matthias; Weber, Friedemann; Överby, Anna K; Ahlm, Clas; Evander, Magnus

    2016-04-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an emerging virus that causes serious illness in humans and livestock. There are no approved vaccines or treatments for humans. The purpose of the study was to identify inhibitory compounds of RVFV infection without any preconceived idea of the mechanism of action. A whole-cell-based high-throughput drug screening assay was developed to screen 28,437 small chemical compounds targeting RVFV infection. To accomplish both speed and robustness, a replication-competent NSs-deleted RVFV expressing a fluorescent reporter gene was developed. Inhibition of fluorescence intensity was quantified by spectrophotometry and related to virus infection in human lung epithelial cells (A549). Cell toxicity was assessed by the Resazurin cell viability assay. After primary screening, 641 compounds were identified that inhibited RVFV infection by ≥80%, with ≥50% cell viability at 50 µM concentration. These compounds were subjected to a second screening regarding dose-response profiles, and 63 compounds with ≥60% inhibition of RVFV infection at 3.12 µM compound concentration and ≥50% cell viability at 25 µM were considered hits. Of these, six compounds with high inhibitory activity were identified. In conclusion, the high-throughput assay could efficiently and safely identify several promising compounds that inhibited RVFV infection. PMID:26762502

  5. Suitability Evaluation for Lowland Rice in Inland Valleys in West Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hideto, Fujii; Muralikrishna, Gumma; Prasad, Thenkabail; Regassa, Namara

    A GIS based model developed by the authors are applied for selecting suitable rice cultivation area in inland valleys that has high potential for rice production in West Africa where rice consumption is increasing very rapidly. The model has the following features. 1) The model is to evaluate the suitability of the land for lowland rice based on score distribution maps respectively made by the data of 29 evaluation parameters. 2) The parameters are classified into 4 categories; bio-physical, technical, socio-economic and health-environmental parameters. 3) Each scored map (layer) is integrated to obtain total scores by multiplying a weight which is determined by the importance of parameters. The suitability for rice in two study sites was evaluated using the model. Mankran and Jolo-Kwaha watershed selected as the study sites from different agro-ecological zone in Ghana. Applying the data of 12 parameters acquired in the study sites to the model, “very suitable” or “suitable” occupies around 30% in Mankran study site and around 60% in Jolo-Kwaha study site.

  6. Geochemical trends through time and lateral variability of diatom floras in the Pleistocene Olorgesailie Formation, southern Kenya Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Owen, R. B.; Renaut, R. W.; Potts, R.; Behrensmeyer, A. K.

    The Olorgesailie Formation (1.2-0.49 Ma) consists of fluvial and lacustrine rift sediments that have yielded abundant Acheulean artifacts and a fossil hominin ( Homo cf. erectus). In testing prior understandings of the paleoenvironmental context, we define nine new geochemical zones. A Chemical Index of Alteration suggests increased catchment weathering during deposition of Members 1, 2, 7, 11, and 13. Biophile elements (Br, S) peak in M8-9 and lower M13 possibly reflecting increased input from soil erosion. REE data show that the Magadi Trachytes supplied most siliciclastic grains. Sixteen diatom stages indicate conductivities of 200-16,000 μS cm - 1 and pH of 7.5-9.5 for five deep-water lakes, ten shallow lakes and sixteen wetlands. These results are compared with diatom data from other sections in the basin and show aquatic spatial variability over km-scale distances. Similar floras are traceable over several kilometers for M2, M3 and M9, indicating broadly homogeneous lacustrine conditions during these times, but diatoms in other members imply variable conditions, some related to local tectonic controls. This lateral and temporal variability emphasizes the importance of carrying out stratigraphic sampling at multiple sites within a basin in efforts to define the environmental context relevant to human evolution.

  7. How Closed are Closed Lakes in Rifts? Significance of Hydraulic Gradients for the Budgets of Paleo-Lakes in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olaka, L. A.

    2015-12-01

    The hydrogeology of rift lakes is complex due to the potential influence of faults and porous volcanic and volcanoclastic media on groundwater flow. We conducted a comprehensive study that integrated geological and hydrogeological data as well as the application of a linear decay model to estimate the groundwater flow between the two of the best-studied lake systems in East Africa, the adjacent Lakes Naivasha and Nakuru- Elmenteita in the Central Kenya Rift. Whereas both lake basins host relatively shallow lakes today, paleo-shorelines and sediments suggest >100 m deep lakes during a wetter climate during the Early Holocene during the so-called African Humid Period. Stable isotope data show variations form highly depleted to more enriched d18O waters. The linear-reservoir depletion model simulates the decline of the Early Holocene lakes in both basins to the modern levels. The altitude difference of ca. 100 m of both paleo-lake levels enables us to estimate the duration of the groundwater decline and the connectivity of the two basins via the Eburru/Gilgil barrier. The results suggest a decline of the groundwater levels during ca. 5 kyrs if there is no recharge, and between 2-2.7 kyrs based on the modern recharge of 0.52 m/yr as the end members of the delay time introduced by subsurface water flow to the hydrology of the lake system. The latter value suggests that ca. 40.95 cubic kilometres of water flowed from Lake Naivasha to Nakuru- Elmenteita at maximum lake level in the Early Holocene following the hydraulic gradient concurrent to the topographic slope. The unexpectedly large volume, more than half of the volume of the paleo-Lake Naivasha during the Early Holocene, emphasizes the importance of groundwater in hydrological modelling of paleo-lakes in rifts. Moreover, the subsurface connectivity of rift lakes also causes a significant lag time to the system introducing a nonlinear component to the system that has to be considered while interpreting paleo

  8. Mapping Extensional Structures in the Makgadikgadi Pans, Botswana with remote sensing and aeromagnetic data: Implication for the continuation of the East African Rift System in southern Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fetkovich, E. J.; Atekwana, E. A.; Abdelsalam, M. G.; Atekwana, E. A.; Katumwehe, A. B.

    2015-12-01

    We used Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) Digital Elevation Model (DEM) and aeromagnetic data to map extensional structures in the Makgadikgadi Pans in northeastern Botswana. These pans are a major morphological feature in Southern Africa characterized by the presence of low lying and flat topography with the highest elevation of 945 m. This topography was a result of multiple filling and desiccation of paleo-lakes that accompanied alternation of wetter and dryer climate during the Late Quaternary period. The objective of our study was to map the extent and distribution of normal faults using their morphological expression and magnetic signature, and examine their relationship with paleo-shorelines of the pans. We: (1) Created a hill shade relief map from the SRTM DEM; (2) Extracted regional NW-SE trending topographic profiles across the pans; (3) Constructed displacement profiles for major normal faults; and (4) Created tilt derivative images from the aeromagnetic data. We found that: (1) The northeastern part of the pan is dissected by three morphologically-defined NE-trending normal faults. The along strike continuity of these faults is in the range of 75 and 170 km and they are spaced at ~30 km apart from each other. (2) The topographic profiles suggest that the exposed minimum vertical displacement (EMVD), defined by poorly developed escarpments, is in the range of 0 m and 49 m. (3) The displacement profiles of the faults is characterized by maximum EMVD in the middle of the faults and that it decays towards the fault tips. These faults are also apparent in the aeromagnetic maps where they seem to displace E-W trending Karoo-age dikes. (4) At least the outer paleo-shoreline of the pans is modified by the NE-trending faults. This suggests that the faults are younger than the paleo-shorelines, which is suggested to have been developed between 500 and 100 ka. Traditionally, the southwestern extension of the East African Rift System has been assigned to the

  9. Rift basins - Origin, history, and distribution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burke, K. C.

    1985-01-01

    Rifts are elongate depressions overlying places where the lithosphere has ruptured in extension. Where filled with sediment they may contain exploitable quantities of oil and gas. Because rits form in a variety of tectonic settings, it is helpful to define the particular tectonic environment in which a specific rift or set of rifts has developed. A useful approach has been to relate that environment to the Wilson Cycle of the opening and the closing of oceans. This appreciation of tectonic setting can help in better understanding of the depositional, structural and thermal history of individual rift systems. The global distribution of rifts can also be related to tectonic environment. For example, rifts associated with continental rupture at a temporary still-stand of a continent over the mantle convective system (rifts like those active in East Africa today) can be distinguished from those associated with continental collision (rifts like the Cenozoic rifts of China).

  10. STS-57 Earth observation of Lake Victoria, Africa

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    STS-57 Earth observation taken aboard Endeavour, Orbiter Vehicle (OV) 105, is of Africa's Lake Victoria, which sits in the middle of the East African Rift Valley System.Lake Victoria is a major resource in eastern Africa, especially to the countries bordering the lake -- Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. Typical summer indicators in equatorial Africa -- puffy clouds over land mass and clear skies over the lakes -- are in the view. Lake Albert in the western section of the Rift Valley and Lake Turkana in the eastern section can be seen to the west and east of Lake Victoria, respectively. Most of the other features on the right are obscured by clouds. NASA scientists studying the STS-57 Earth photography point out that the wide perspective of this scene gives a sense of the three-dimensional profile of the whole rift system. The scientists cite the way in which the component valleys of the rift system ramp up to Lake Victoria on either side.

  11. Configuration and Correlation of Fluvial Terrace Deposits In the Lower Rio Salado Valley: A Record of Magmatic Uplift and Active Normal Faulting in the Rio Grande Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sion, B. D.; Axen, G. J.; Phillips, F. M.; Harrison, B.

    2015-12-01

    The Rio Salado is a western tributary of the Rio Grande whose valley is flanked by six major terrace levels. The Rio crosses several active rift-related normal faults and the active, mid-crustal Socorro Magma Body (SMB; a sill at 19 km depth that is actively doming the land surface), providing an unusual opportunity to explore the effects of deep magma emplacement and active faulting on the terraces. Rio Salado terraces were mapped using a high-resolution DEM and digital color stereophotographs and were projected onto a valley-parallel vertical plane to construct longitudinal profiles. Three new soil pits were described to aid terrace correlation. A net incision rate of 0.41 ± 0.06 m/ka was inferred from the correlation of a major fill-cut terrace to the 122 ± 18 ka Airport surface ~25 km south of the Rio Salado. This incision rate is >1.5 times more rapid than estimated rates nearby or in other parts of New Mexico, but yields age estimates for other terraces that are consistent with soil development. Terrace gradients in the Rio Salado have increased through time, indicating either stream response to Rio Grande incision or footwall tilting from the Quaternary Loma Blanca fault (LBF). Two terraces in the LBF hanging wall are back-tilted relative to their footwall counterparts, suggesting a listric geometry for the LBF. However, two others (Qtf and Qtc) are east-tilted relative to their footwall counterparts. Both Qtf and Qtc merge eastward with the next youngest terrace in the flight, and Qtc is arched, consistent with an earlier episode of surface uplift above the SMB. Future work will involve (a) additional terrace mapping over the SMB, (b) cosmogenic 36Cl depth profile dating of the Rio Salado terraces to determine incision rates, allow regional terrace correlations, and constrain fault-slip slip rates and the record of SMB-related surface uplift, and (c) numerical modeling of SMB inflation constrained by uplift signals.

  12. Rift Valley Fever Vaccine Virus Clone 13 Is Able to Cross the Ovine Placental Barrier Associated with Foetal Infections, Malformations, and Stillbirths

    PubMed Central

    Makoschey, Birgit; van Kilsdonk, Emma; Hubers, Willem R.; Vrijenhoek, Mieke P.; Smit, Marianne; Wichgers Schreur, Paul J.; Kortekaas, Jeroen; Moulin, Véronique

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne pathogen that affects domesticated ruminants and occasionally humans. Classical RVF vaccines are based on formalin-inactivated virus or the live-attenuated Smithburn strain. The inactivated vaccine is highly safe but requires multiple administrations and yearly re-vaccinations. Although the Smithburn vaccine provides solid protection after a single vaccination, this vaccine is not safe for pregnant animals. An alternative live-attenuated vaccine, named Clone 13, carries a large natural deletion in the NSs gene which encodes the major virulence factor of the virus. The Clone 13 vaccine was previously shown to be safe for young lambs and calves. Moreover, a study in pregnant ewes suggested that the vaccine could also be applied safely during gestation. To anticipate on a possible future incursion of RVFV in Europe, we have evaluated the safety of Clone 13 for young lambs and pregnant ewes. In line with the guidelines from the World Organisation for Animal health (Office International des Epizooties, OIE) and regulations of the European Pharmacopeia (EP), these studies were performed with an overdose. Our studies with lambs showed that Clone 13 dissemination within vaccinated animals is very limited. Moreover, the Clone 13 vaccine virus was not shed nor spread to in-contact sentinels and did not revert to virulence upon animal-to-animal passage. Importantly, a large experiment with pregnant ewes demonstrated that the Clone 13 virus is able to spread to the fetus, resulting in malformations and stillbirths. Altogether, our results suggest that Clone 13 can be applied safely in lambs, but that caution should be taken when Clone 13 is used in pregnant animals, particularly during the first trimester of gestation. PMID:27031621

  13. Rift Valley Fever Vaccine Virus Clone 13 Is Able to Cross the Ovine Placental Barrier Associated with Foetal Infections, Malformations, and Stillbirths.

    PubMed

    Makoschey, Birgit; van Kilsdonk, Emma; Hubers, Willem R; Vrijenhoek, Mieke P; Smit, Marianne; Wichgers Schreur, Paul J; Kortekaas, Jeroen; Moulin, Véronique

    2016-03-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne pathogen that affects domesticated ruminants and occasionally humans. Classical RVF vaccines are based on formalin-inactivated virus or the live-attenuated Smithburn strain. The inactivated vaccine is highly safe but requires multiple administrations and yearly re-vaccinations. Although the Smithburn vaccine provides solid protection after a single vaccination, this vaccine is not safe for pregnant animals. An alternative live-attenuated vaccine, named Clone 13, carries a large natural deletion in the NSs gene which encodes the major virulence factor of the virus. The Clone 13 vaccine was previously shown to be safe for young lambs and calves. Moreover, a study in pregnant ewes suggested that the vaccine could also be applied safely during gestation. To anticipate on a possible future incursion of RVFV in Europe, we have evaluated the safety of Clone 13 for young lambs and pregnant ewes. In line with the guidelines from the World Organisation for Animal health (Office International des Epizooties, OIE) and regulations of the European Pharmacopeia (EP), these studies were performed with an overdose. Our studies with lambs showed that Clone 13 dissemination within vaccinated animals is very limited. Moreover, the Clone 13 vaccine virus was not shed nor spread to in-contact sentinels and did not revert to virulence upon animal-to-animal passage. Importantly, a large experiment with pregnant ewes demonstrated that the Clone 13 virus is able to spread to the fetus, resulting in malformations and stillbirths. Altogether, our results suggest that Clone 13 can be applied safely in lambs, but that caution should be taken when Clone 13 is used in pregnant animals, particularly during the first trimester of gestation. PMID:27031621

  14. Aerosol exposure to Rift Valley fever virus causes earlier and more severe neuropathology in the murine model, which has important implications for therapeutic development.

    PubMed

    Reed, Christopher; Lin, Kenny; Wilhelmsen, Catherine; Friedrich, Brian; Nalca, Aysegul; Keeney, Ashley; Donnelly, Ginger; Shamblin, Joshua; Hensley, Lisa E; Olinger, Gene; Smith, Darci R

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an important mosquito-borne veterinary and human pathogen that can cause severe disease including acute-onset hepatitis, delayed-onset encephalitis, retinitis and blindness, or a hemorrhagic syndrome. Currently, no licensed vaccine or therapeutics exist to treat this potentially deadly disease. Detailed studies describing the pathogenesis of RVFV following aerosol exposure have not been completed and candidate therapeutics have not been evaluated following an aerosol exposure. These studies are important because while mosquito transmission is the primary means for human infection, it can also be transmitted by aerosol or through mucosal contact. Therefore, we directly compared the pathogenesis of RVFV following aerosol exposure to a subcutaneous (SC) exposure in the murine model by analyzing survival, clinical observations, blood chemistry, hematology, immunohistochemistry, and virus titration of tissues. Additionally, we evaluated the effectiveness of the nucleoside analog ribavirin administered prophylactically to treat mice exposed by aerosol and SC. The route of exposure did not significantly affect the survival, chemistry or hematology results of the mice. Acute hepatitis occurred despite the route of exposure. However, the development of neuropathology occurred much earlier and was more severe in mice exposed by aerosol compared to SC exposed mice. Mice treated with ribavirin and exposed SC were partially protected, whereas treated mice exposed by aerosol were not protected. Early and aggressive viral invasion of brain tissues following aerosol exposure likely played an important role in ribavirin's failure to prevent mortality among these animals. Our results highlight the need for more candidate antivirals to treat RVFV infection, especially in the case of a potential aerosol exposure. Additionally, our study provides an account of the key pathogenetic differences in RVF disease following two potential exposure routes and

  15. The Nucleocapsid Protein of Rift Valley Fever Virus Is a Potent Human CD8+ T Cell Antigen and Elicits Memory Responses

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Weidong; Watts, Douglas M.; Costanzo, Margaret C.; Tang, Xiaolei; Venegas, Leon A.; Jiao, Feng; Sette, Alessandro; Sidney, John; Sewell, Andrew K.; Wooldridge, Linda; Makino, Shinji; Morrill, John C.; Peters, Clarence J.; Kan-Mitchell, June

    2013-01-01

    There is no licensed human vaccine currently available for Rift Valley Fever Virus (RVFV), a Category A high priority pathogen and a serious zoonotic threat. While neutralizing antibodies targeting the viral glycoproteins are protective, they appear late in the course of infection, and may not be induced in time to prevent a natural or bioterrorism-induced outbreak. Here we examined the immunogenicity of RVFV nucleocapsid (N) protein as a CD8+ T cell antigen with the potential for inducing rapid protection after vaccination. HLA-A*0201 (A2)-restricted epitopic determinants were identified with N-specific CD8+ T cells from eight healthy donors that were primed with dendritic cells transduced to express N, and subsequently expanded in vitro by weekly re-stimulations with monocytes pulsed with 59 15mer overlapping peptides (OLPs) across N. Two immunodominant epitopes, VT9 (VLSEWLPVT, N121–129) and IL9 (ILDAHSLYL, N165–173), were defined. VT9- and IL9-specific CD8+ T cells identified by tetramer staining were cytotoxic and polyfunctional, characteristics deemed important for viral control in vivo. These peptides induced specific CD8+ T cell responses in A2-transgenic mice, and more importantly, potent N-specific CD8+ T cell reactivities, including VT9- and IL9-specific ones, were mounted by mice after a booster vaccination with the live attenuated RVF MP-12. Our data suggest that the RVFV N protein is a potent human T cell immunogen capable of eliciting broad, immunodominant CD8+ T cell responses that are potentially protective. Understanding the immune responses to the nucleocapsid is central to the design of an effective RVFV vaccine irrespective of whether this viral protein is effective as a stand-alone immunogen or only in combination with other RVFV antigens. PMID:23527138

  16. A spatially explicit metapopulation model and cattle trade analysis suggests key determinants for the recurrent circulation of rift valley Fever virus in a pilot area of madagascar highlands.

    PubMed

    Nicolas, Gaëlle; Chevalier, Véronique; Tantely, Luciano Michaël; Fontenille, Didier; Durand, Benoît

    2014-12-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a vector-borne zoonotic disease that causes high morbidity and mortality in ruminants. In 2008-2009, a RVF outbreak affected the whole Madagascar island, including the Anjozorobe district located in Madagascar highlands. An entomological survey showed the absence of Aedes among the potential RVF virus (RVFV) vector species identified in this area, and an overall low abundance of mosquitoes due to unfavorable climatic conditions during winter. No serological nor virological sign of infection was observed in wild terrestrial mammals of the area, suggesting an absence of wild RVF virus (RVFV) reservoir. However, a three years serological and virological follow-up in cattle showed a recurrent RVFV circulation. The objective of this study was to understand the key determinants of this unexpected recurrent transmission. To achieve this goal, a spatial deterministic discrete-time metapopulation model combined with cattle trade network was designed and parameterized to reproduce the local conditions using observational data collected in the area. Three scenarios that could explain the RVFV recurrent circulation in the area were analyzed: (i) RVFV overwintering thanks to a direct transmission between cattle when viraemic cows calve, vectors being absent during the winter, (ii) a low level vector-based circulation during winter thanks to a residual vector population, without direct transmission between cattle, (iii) combination of both above mentioned mechanisms. Multi-model inference methods resulted in a model incorporating both a low level RVFV winter vector-borne transmission and a direct transmission between animals when viraemic cows calve. Predictions satisfactorily reproduced field observations, 84% of cattle infections being attributed to vector-borne transmission, and 16% to direct transmission. These results appeared robust according to the sensitivity analysis. Interweaving between agricultural works in rice fields, seasonality of

  17. Biology of mosquitoes that are potential vectors of Rift Valley Fever virus in different biotopes of the central highlands of Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Tantely, Michaël Luciano; Rakotoniaina, Jean-Claude; Tata, Etienne; Andrianaivolambo, Lala; Razafindrasata, Fidimanana; Fontenille, Didier; Elissa, Nohal

    2013-05-01

    There were epidemic-epizootics of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) affecting humans and cattle in Madagascar in the district of Anjozorobe in 2008. Little is known about the role of Malagasy mosquitoes in the circulation of RVF virus. Therefore, we investigated the species diversity, dynamics and biology of potential RVF virus vectors in the rainforest, rainforest edge (village of Anorana), and savanna biotope (village of Antanifotsy) of this district between November 2008 and July 2010. We captured 56,605 adults of 35 different species. Anopheles squamosus (Theobald), Anopheles coustani (Laveran), Culex antennatus (Becker), Culex pipiens (L.), and Culex univittatus (Theobald) were the most abundant during the rainy season with Cx. pipiens the most abundant species in the rainforest (47%), and An. squamosus the most abundant species in the rainforest edge and in the savanna biotope (56%, 60%, respectively). Only Cx. univittatus was abundant in the dry season. The parous rate was > 60% throughout the rainy season for An. squamosus and it was > 50% from the middle to the end of the rainy season for Cx. pipiens. Two additional species have been found only at larval stage. Cattle were the most attractive bait for all species, followed by sheep and poultry. Human was the least attractive for all species. Most of the 163 bloodmeals tested were taken from cattle. Three were from poultry, one was from dog and one was a mixed bloodmeal taken from sheep and cattle. These results on vectorial capacity parameters may allow considering the involvement of mosquito transmission of the virus in the district of Anjozorobe during the recent epidemic-epizootic.

  18. Description and analysis of the cattle trade network in the Madagascar highlands: potential role in the diffusion of Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Nicolas, Gaëlle; Durand, Benoît; Duboz, Raphaël; Rakotondravao, René; Chevalier, Véronique

    2013-04-01

    In 2008-2009 a Rift Valley Fever (RVF) outbreak occurred in the Anjozorobe area, a temperate and mountainous area of the Madagascar highlands. The results of a serosurvey conducted in 2009 suggested recurrent circulation of RVF virus (RVFV) in this area and potential involvement of the cattle trade in RVFV circulation. The objective of this study was to describe the cattle trade network of the area and analyse the link between network structure and RVFV circulation. Five hundred and sixteen animals that tested negative in 2009 were sampled again in 2010. The 2009-2010 cattle-level seroconversion rate was estimated at 7% (95% CI: 5-10%). Trade data from 386 breeders of 48 villages were collected and analysed using social network analysis methodology, nodes being villages and ties being any movements of cattle connecting villages. The specific practice of cattle barter, known as kapsile, that involves frequent contacts between cattle of two breeders, was observed in addition to usual trade. Trade data were analysed using a logistic model, the occurrence of seroconversion at the village level being the outcome variable and the network centrality measures being the predictors. A negative association was observed between the occurrence of seroconversion in the village and introduction of cattle by trade (p=0.03), as well as the distance to the nearest water point (p=0.002). Conversely, the practice of kapsile, was a seroconversion risk factor (p=0.007). The kapsile practice may be the support for inter-village RVFV circulation whereas the trade network is probably rather implicated in the introduction of RVFV to the area from other parts of Madagascar. The negative association of the distance to the nearest water point suggests that after RVFV introduction, a substantial part of transmission may be due to vectors.

  19. A Spatially Explicit Metapopulation Model and Cattle Trade Analysis Suggests Key Determinants for the Recurrent Circulation of Rift Valley Fever Virus in a Pilot Area of Madagascar Highlands

    PubMed Central

    Nicolas, Gaëlle; Chevalier, Véronique; Tantely, Luciano Michaël; Fontenille, Didier; Durand, Benoît

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a vector-borne zoonotic disease that causes high morbidity and mortality in ruminants. In 2008–2009, a RVF outbreak affected the whole Madagascar island, including the Anjozorobe district located in Madagascar highlands. An entomological survey showed the absence of Aedes among the potential RVF virus (RVFV) vector species identified in this area, and an overall low abundance of mosquitoes due to unfavorable climatic conditions during winter. No serological nor virological sign of infection was observed in wild terrestrial mammals of the area, suggesting an absence of wild RVF virus (RVFV) reservoir. However, a three years serological and virological follow-up in cattle showed a recurrent RVFV circulation. The objective of this study was to understand the key determinants of this unexpected recurrent transmission. To achieve this goal, a spatial deterministic discrete-time metapopulation model combined with cattle trade network was designed and parameterized to reproduce the local conditions using observational data collected in the area. Three scenarios that could explain the RVFV recurrent circulation in the area were analyzed: (i) RVFV overwintering thanks to a direct transmission between cattle when viraemic cows calve, vectors being absent during the winter, (ii) a low level vector-based circulation during winter thanks to a residual vector population, without direct transmission between cattle, (iii) combination of both above mentioned mechanisms. Multi-model inference methods resulted in a model incorporating both a low level RVFV winter vector-borne transmission and a direct transmission between animals when viraemic cows calve. Predictions satisfactorily reproduced field observations, 84% of cattle infections being attributed to vector-borne transmission, and 16% to direct transmission. These results appeared robust according to the sensitivity analysis. Interweaving between agricultural works in rice fields, seasonality of

  20. Tag team tectonics: mantle upwelling and lithospheric heterogeneity ally to rift continents (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nelson, W. R.; Furman, T.

    2013-12-01

    belts flanking the Archean Tanzanian craton, suggesting the lithosphere in these regions has a complex geodynamic history that provides an avenue of weakness for rift development around the craton. In the Tanzanian portion of the Kenya Rift, highly sodic mafic and carbonatitic lavas dominate both the rift valleys and rift shoulders. Mantle xenoliths from this region show petrographic and isotopic evidence for ancient and recent metasomatic events. In the Western Rift, highly potassic mafic lavas dominate the volcanic landscape in the rift valley and rift margins. The lithospheric mantle underlying this region is highly metasomatized, as evidenced by the presence of clinopyroxenite, websterite and glimmerite xenoliths and the absence of peridotite. The highly fusible metasomatized mantle beneath both the Kenya and Western rifts enables lithospheric melting with comparatively minor P-T perturbation. Regardless of which process begot the other, lithospheric thinning promotes melting while volcanism promotes lithospheric weakness and enables rift propagation. When viewed holistically, both mantle plume activity and lithospheric heterogeneities have played a vital role in the initiation and subsequent evolution of the rifting throughout eastern Africa.

  1. Evolution along the Great Rift Valley: phenotypic and genetic differentiation of East African white-eyes (Aves, Zosteropidae).

    PubMed

    Habel, Jan Christian; Borghesio, Luca; Newmark, William D; Day, Julia J; Lens, Luc; Husemann, Martin; Ulrich, Werner

    2015-11-01

    The moist and cool cloud forests of East Africa represent a network of isolated habitats that are separated by dry and warm lowland savannah, offering an opportunity to investigate how strikingly different selective regimes affect species diversification. Here, we used the passerine genus Zosterops (white-eyes) from this region as our model system. Species of the genus occur in contrasting distribution settings, with geographical mountain isolation driving diversification, and savannah interconnectivity preventing differentiation. We analyze (1) patterns of phenotypic and genetic differentiation in high- and lowland species (different distribution settings), (2) investigate the potential effects of natural selection and temporal and spatial isolation (evolutionary drivers), and (3) critically review the taxonomy of this species complex. We found strong phenotypic and genetic differentiation among and within the three focal species, both in the highland species complex and in the lowland taxa. Altitude was a stronger predictor of phenotypic patterns than the current taxonomic classification. We found longitudinal and latitudinal phenotypic gradients for all three species. Furthermore, wing length and body weight were significantly correlated with altitude and habitat type in the highland species Z. poliogaster. Genetic and phenotypic divergence showed contrasting inter- and intraspecific structures. We suggest that the evolution of phenotypic characters is mainly driven by natural selection due to differences in the two macro-habitats, cloud forest and savannah. In contrast, patterns of neutral genetic variation appear to be rather driven by geographical isolation of the respective mountain massifs. Populations of the Z. poliogaster complex, as well as Z. senegalensis and Z. abyssinicus, are not monophyletic based on microsatellite data and have higher levels of intraspecific differentiation compared to the currently accepted species. PMID:26640665

  2. Evolution along the Great Rift Valley: phenotypic and genetic differentiation of East African white-eyes (Aves, Zosteropidae).

    PubMed

    Habel, Jan Christian; Borghesio, Luca; Newmark, William D; Day, Julia J; Lens, Luc; Husemann, Martin; Ulrich, Werner

    2015-11-01

    The moist and cool cloud forests of East Africa represent a network of isolated habitats that are separated by dry and warm lowland savannah, offering an opportunity to investigate how strikingly different selective regimes affect species diversification. Here, we used the passerine genus Zosterops (white-eyes) from this region as our model system. Species of the genus occur in contrasting distribution settings, with geographical mountain isolation driving diversification, and savannah interconnectivity preventing differentiation. We analyze (1) patterns of phenotypic and genetic differentiation in high- and lowland species (different distribution settings), (2) investigate the potential effects of natural selection and temporal and spatial isolation (evolutionary drivers), and (3) critically review the taxonomy of this species complex. We found strong phenotypic and genetic differentiation among and within the three focal species, both in the highland species complex and in the lowland taxa. Altitude was a stronger predictor of phenotypic patterns than the current taxonomic classification. We found longitudinal and latitudinal phenotypic gradients for all three species. Furthermore, wing length and body weight were significantly correlated with altitude and habitat type in the highland species Z. poliogaster. Genetic and phenotypic divergence showed contrasting inter- and intraspecific structures. We suggest that the evolution of phenotypic characters is mainly driven by natural selection due to differences in the two macro-habitats, cloud forest and savannah. In contrast, patterns of neutral genetic variation appear to be rather driven by geographical isolation of the respective mountain massifs. Populations of the Z. poliogaster complex, as well as Z. senegalensis and Z. abyssinicus, are not monophyletic based on microsatellite data and have higher levels of intraspecific differentiation compared to the currently accepted species.

  3. Complex seismicity patterns in the Rwenzori region: insights to rifting processes at the Albertine Rift.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindenfeld, M.; Rümpker, G.; Wölbern, I.; Batte, A. G.; Schumann, A.

    2012-04-01

    Numerous seismological studies in East Africa have focused on the northern and eastern branches of the East African Rift System (EARS). However, the seismic activity along the western branch is much more pronounced. Here, the Rwenzori Mountains are located within the Albertine rift valley, at the border between Uganda and D.R. Congo. During a seismic monitoring campaign between February 2006 and September 2007 we have recorded more than 800 earthquakes per month in the Rwenzori area. The earthquake distribution is highly heterogeneous. The majority of located events lie within faults zones to the East and West of the Rwenzoris with the highest seismic activity observed in the northeastern area, were the mountains are in contact with the rift shoulders. The hypocentral depth distribution peaks at 16 km depth and extends down to the Moho which was found at 20 - 32 km depths by teleseismic receiver functions. Local magnitudes range from -0.5 to 5.1 with a b-value of 1.1. Fault plane solutions of 304 events were derived from P-polarities and SV/P amplitude ratios. More than 70% of the source mechanisms exhibit normal faulting. T-axis trends are highly uniform and oriented WNW-ESE, which is perpendicular to the rift axis and in good agreement with kinematic rift models. The area of highest seismic activity NE of the Rwenzoris is characterized by the occurrence of several earthquake clusters in 5 -20 km depth. They have stable positions throughout time and form elongated pipes with 1-2 km diameter and vertical extensions of 3-5 km. From petrological considerations we presume that these earthquake swarms are triggered by fluids and gasses which originate from a magmatic source below the crust. The existence of a magmatic source within the lithosphere is supported by the detection of a shear-wave velocity reduction in 55-80 km depth from receiver-function analysis and the location of mantle earthquakes at about 60 km. We interpret these observations as indication for an

  4. MP-12 virus containing the clone 13 deletion in the NSs gene prevents lethal disease when administered after Rift Valley fever virus infection in hamsters

    PubMed Central

    Gowen, Brian B.; Westover, Jonna B.; Sefing, Eric J.; Bailey, Kevin W.; Nishiyama, Shoko; Wandersee, Luci; Scharton, Dionna; Jung, Kie-Hoon; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV; Bunyaviridae, Phlebovirus) causes a range of illnesses that include retinitis, fulminant hepatitis, neurologic disease, and hemorrhagic fever. In hospitalized individuals, case fatality rates can be as high as 10–20%. There are no vaccines or antivirals approved for human use to prevent or treat severe RVFV infections. We previously tested the efficacy of the MP-12 vaccine strain and related variants with NSs truncations as a post-exposure prophylaxis in mice infected with wild-type pathogenic RVFV strain ZH501. Post-exposure efficacy of the rMP12-C13type, a recombinant MP-12 vaccine virus which encodes an in-frame truncation removing 69% of the NSs protein, resulted in 30% survival when administering the virus within 30 min of subcutaneous ZH501 challenge in mice, while the parental MP-12 virus conferred no protection by post-exposure vaccination. Here, we demonstrate uniform protection of hamsters by post-exposure vaccination with rMP12-C13type administered 6 h post-ZH501 infection while no efficacy was observed with the parental MP-12 virus. Notably, both the MP-12 and rMP12-C13type viruses were highly effective (100% protection) when administered 21 days prior to challenge. In a subsequent study delaying vaccination until 8, 12, and 24 h post-RVFV exposure, we observed 80, 70, and 30% survival, respectively. Our findings indicate that the rapid protective innate immune response elicited by rMP12-C13type may be due to the truncated NSs protein, suggesting that the resulting functional inactivation of NSs plays an important role in the observed post-exposure efficacy. Taken together, the data demonstrate that post-exposure vaccination with rMP12-C13type is effective in limiting ZH501 replication and associated disease in standard pre-exposure vaccination and post-challenge treatment models of RVFV infection, and suggest an extended post-exposure prophylaxis window beyond that initially observed in mice. PMID:26175722

  5. Land degradation trends in upper catchments and morphological developments of braided rivers in drylands: the case of a marginal graben of the Ethiopian Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demissie, Biadgilgn; Frankl, Amaury; Haile, Mitiku; Nyssen, Jan

    2014-05-01

    Braided rivers have received relatively little attention in research and development activities in drylands. However, they strongly impact agroecology and agricultural activities and thereby local livelihoods. The Raya Graben (3750 km² including the escarpment) is a marginal graben of the Ethiopian Rift Valley located in North Ethiopia. In order to study the dynamics of braided rivers and the relationship with biophysical controls, 20 representative catchments were selected, ranging between 15 and 311 km². First, the 2005 morphology (length, area) of the braided rivers was related to biophysical controls (vegetation cover, catchment area and slope gradient in the steep upper catchments and gradient in the graben bottom). Second, the changes in length of the braided rivers were related to vegetation cover changes in the upper catchments since 1972. Landsat imagery was used to calculate the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), and to map vegetation cover and the total length of the braided rivers. Spot CNES imagery available from Google Earth was used to identify the total area of the braided rivers in 2005. A linear regression analysis revealed that the length of braided rivers was positively related to the catchment area (R²=0.32, p<0.01), but insignificantly related to vegetation cover in the upper catchments. However, there is an indication that it is an important factor in the relationship calculated for 2005 (R²=0.2, p=0.064). Similarly, the area occupied by the braided rivers was related to NDVI (R²=0.24, p<0.05) and upper catchment area (R²=0.447, p<0.01). Slope gradient is not an important explanatory factor. This is related to the fact that slope gradients are steep (average of 38.1%) in all upper and gentle (average of 3.4%) in graben bottom catchments. The vegetation cover in the upper catchments shows a statistically insignificant increasing trend (R²=0.73, p=0.067) over the last 40 years, whereas length of rivers in the graben bottom

  6. Trapping of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) vectors using Light Emitting Diode (LED) CDC traps in two arboviral disease hot spots in Kenya

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Mosquitoes’ response to artificial lights including color has been exploited in trap designs for improved sampling of mosquito vectors. Earlier studies suggest that mosquitoes are attracted to specific wavelengths of light and thus the need to refine techniques to increase mosquito captures following the development of super-bright light-emitting diodes (LEDs) which emit narrow wavelengths of light or very specific colors. Therefore, we investigated if LEDs can be effective substitutes for incandescent lamps used in CDC light traps for mosquito surveillance, and if so, determine the best color for attraction of important Rift Valley Fever (RFV) vectors. Methods The efficiency of selected colored LED CDC light traps (red, green, blue, violet, combination of blue-green-red (BGR)) to sample RVF vectors was evaluated relative to incandescent light (as control) in a CDC light trap in two RVF hotspots (Marigat and Ijara districts) in Kenya. In field experiments, traps were baited with dry ice and captures evaluated for Aedes tricholabis, Ae. mcintoshi, Ae. ochraceus, Mansonia uniformis, Mn. africana and Culex pipiens, following Latin square design with days as replicates. Daily mosquito counts per treatment were analyzed using a generalized linear model with Negative Binomial error structure and log link using R. The incidence rate ratios (IRR) that mosquito species chose other treatments instead of the control, were estimated. Results Seasonal preference of Ae.mcintoshi and Ae. ochraceus at Ijara was evident with a bias towards BGR and blue traps respectively in one trapping period but this pattern waned during another period at same site with significantly low numbers recorded in all colored traps except blue relative to the control. Overall results showed that higher captures of all species were recorded in control traps compared to the other LED traps (IRR < 1) although only significantly different from red and violet. Conclusion Based on our

  7. Impact of Predicted Changes in Rainfall and Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide on Maize and Wheat Yields in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh, A.; Biazin, B.; Stroosnijder, L.; Bewket, W.; Keesstra, S.

    2014-12-01

    The objective of this study was to assess potential impacts of climate change on maize and wheat yields in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia. We considered effects of elevated atmospheric CO2 and changes in rainfall during the main (Kiremt) and the short (Belg) rain and cropping seasons. Crop yield simulations were made with the FAO AquaCrop model using baseline climate data and climate change scenarios projected by the ECHAM5 General Circulation Model under A2 (high) and B1 (low) emission scenarios. The MarkSimGCM daily weather generator was used to generate projected daily values of precipitation and temperature. The projected rainfall during Kiremt shows an increase by about 12-69% while projected Belg rainfall decreases by up to 68%. The mean onset of the Belg cropping season for maize is projected to be delayed by 2-9 weeks and the mean cessation is expected to be extended by more than a month in sub-humid/humid areas of the CRV. In most of the sub-humid/humid areas, the 90 day maize and wheat growing periods will not have dry spells lasting longer than 10 consecutive days. However, in the semiarid areas dry spells could last longer than 15 days. The mean simulated maize yield increased by up to 30% due to changes in the projected seasonal rainfall alone, and by up to 14% due to elevated CO2 alone. The combined effect of elevated CO2 and projected climate factors increased maize yields by up to 59% in sub-humid/humid areas, but resulted in a decrease of up to 46% in the semiarid areas. Wheat yield showed no significant response to the projected rainfall changes, but increased by up to 40% due to elevated CO2. Our results suggest that climate change will increase crop yields in the sub humid/humid regions of the CRV. However, in semi-arid areas the overall projected climate change will affect the yield negatively.

  8. Images of the East Africa Rift System from the Joint Inversion of Body Waves, Surface Waves, and Gravity: Investigating the Role of Magma in Early-Stage Continental Rifting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roecker, S. W.; Ebinger, C. J.; Tiberi, C.; Mulibo, G. D.; Ferdinand-Wambura, R.; Muzuka, A.; Khalfan, M.; Kianji, G.; Gautier, S.; Albaric, J.; Peyrat, S.

    2015-12-01

    With several rift segments at different stages of the rifting cycle, and the last orogenic episode more than 500 Mya, the young (<7 My) Eastern rift system in northern Tanzania and southern Kenya offers an ideal venue to study the role of magma and other fluids in continental rifting. To estimate both the location and volume of magma beneath the rift system, we generated 3D elastic wave images of the crust and uppermost mantle of this region by analyzing data recorded by a local deployment of 40 broad band seismic stations over a period of two years. We jointly inverted P and S wave arrival times from locally recorded earthquakes with Rayleigh wave dispersion curves derived from cross correlating ambient noise. These results were combined with Bouguer gravity anomalies to increase resolution and add constraints. The ambient noise signal appears to be channeled along the axis of the rift system, suggesting a waveguide effect. Tests with synthetic data estimate a spatial resolution in our images on the order of a few km. Our results demonstrate fundamental modifications of continental crustal structure by magmatic processes during the first few My of rift basin development. To first order, our models are dominated by regions of exceptionally low (by 10-20%) shear wavespeed relative to that of average continental crust. To a large extent the wavespeeds mimic the topography, with the slowest shear wave speeds corresponding to the lowest elevations, and tracing out a NE-SW striking region about 20 km wide from the Natron basin in the north to a NW-SE region of similar width beneath the Manyara basin in the south. These low wavespeeds are likely to be a consequence of the presence of magma and other fluids from at least 30 km depth, the limit of depth resolution for this dataset and near the base of the crust (~35 km), and extending to upper crustal levels in some areas. Somewhat surprisingly, a second region of significant low wavespeed beneath the Ngorongoro caldera

  9. Hawaii Rifts

    SciTech Connect

    Nicole Lautze

    2015-01-01

    Rifts mapped through reviewing the location of dikes and vents on the USGS 2007 Geologic Map of the State of Hawaii, as well as our assessment of topography, and, to a small extent, gravity data. Data is in shapefile format.

  10. Topographic growth around the Orange River valley, southern Africa: A Cenozoic record of crustal deformation and climatic change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dauteuil, Olivier; Bessin, Paul; Guillocheau, François

    2015-03-01

    We reconstruct the history of topographic growth in southern Africa on both sides of the Orange River valley from an integrated analysis of erosion surfaces,