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  1. 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...

  2. Mapping the Risk of Rift Valley fever re-emergence in Southern Africa using remote sensing data

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever is a viral disease of animals and humans that occurs throughout sub-Saharan Africa, Egypt and the Arabian Peninsula. Outbreaks of the disease are episodic and closely linked to climate variability, especially widespread elevated rainfall that facilitates Rift Valley fever virus tra...

  3. 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.

  4. 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...

  5. 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.

  6. 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 ...

  7. The Example of Eastern Africa: the dynamic of Rift Valley fever and tools for monitoring virus activity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever is a mosquito-borne viral zoonosis that primarily affects animals but also has the capacity to infect humans. Outbreaks of this disease in eastern Africa are closely associated with periods of heavy rainfall and forecasting models and early warning systems have been developed to en...

  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 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 ...

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  11. 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

  12. 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

  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. Environmental change and Rift Valley fever in eastern Africa: projecting beyond HEALTHY FUTURES.

    PubMed

    Taylor, David; Hagenlocher, Michael; Jones, Anne E; Kienberger, Stefan; Leedale, Joseph; Morse, Andrew P

    2016-01-01

    Outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF), a relatively recently emerged zoonosis endemic to large parts of sub-Saharan Africa that has the potential to spread beyond the continent, have profound health and socio-economic impacts, particularly in communities where resilience is already low. Here output from a new, dynamic disease model [the Liverpool RVF (LRVF) model], driven by downscaled, bias-corrected climate change data from an ensemble of global circulation models from the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project run according to two radiative forcing scenarios [representative concentration pathway (RCP)4.5 and RCP8.5], is combined with results of a spatial assessment of social vulnerability to the disease in eastern Africa. The combined approach allowed for analyses of spatial and temporal variations in the risk of RVF to the end of the current century. Results for both scenarios highlight the high-risk of future RVF outbreaks, including in parts of eastern Africa to date unaffected by the disease. The results also highlight the risk of spread from/to countries adjacent to the study area, and possibly farther afield, and the value of considering the geography of future projections of disease risk. Based on the results, there is a clear need to remain vigilant and to invest not only in surveillance and early warning systems, but also in addressing the socio-economic factors that underpin social vulnerability in order to mitigate, effectively, future impacts. PMID:27063733

  15. 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...

  16. 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 ...

  17. 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

  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. Prediction of a Rift Valley fever Outbreak

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Using satellite measurements to detect elevated sea surface temperatures (SSTs) and subsequent elevated normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data in Africa, we predicted an outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in humans and animals in the Horn of Africa during September 2006-May 2007. We det...

  20. Decision-support tool for prevention and control of Rift Valley fever epizootics in the Greater Horn of Africa.

    PubMed

    2010-08-01

    In East Africa, Rift Valley fever (RVF) usually occurs as explosive epizootics with prolonged inter-epidemic periods on the order of 8 to 10 years. The episodic nature of the disease and the rapid evolution of outbreaks create special challenges for its mitigation and control. Following the events of the 2006 and 2007 RVF outbreak in East Africa, decision-makers assembled their collective experiences in the form of a risk-based decision support tool to help guide responses in future emergencies. The premise of the tool is that a series of natural events are indicative of the increasing risk of an outbreak and that actions should be matched to this evolving risk profile. In this manner, investment in prevention and control can be qualitatively optimized. The decision support tool is a living document written through stakeholder input. This publication captures the current tool as an example of risk-based decision support. PMID:20682910

  1. A Rift Valley Fever Risk Surveillance System in Africa Using Remotely Sensed Data in a GIS: Potential for Use on Other Continents

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne viral disease with pronounced health and economic impacts to domestic animals and humans in much of sub-Saharan Africa (1). The disease causes high mortality and abortion in domestic animals, and significant morbidity and mortality in humans. RVF epizootic...

  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: A neglected zoonotic disease?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a serious viral disease of animals and humans in Africa and the Middle East that is transmitted by mosquitoes. First isolated in Kenya during an outbreak in 1930, subsequent outbreaks have had a significant impact on animal and human health, as well as national economies. ...

  4. 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

  5. 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. PMID:21809777

  6. A Rift Valley fever risk surveillance system for Africa using remotely sensed data: potential for use on other continents.

    PubMed

    Linthicum, Kenneth J; Anyamba, Assaf; Britch, Seth C; Chretien, Jean-Paul; Erickson, Ralph L; Small, Jennifer; Tucker, Compton J; Bennett, Kristine E; Mayer, Richard T; Schmidtmann, Edward T; Andreadis, Theodore G; Anderson, John F; Wilson, William C; Freier, Jerome E; James, Angela M; Miller, Ryan S; Drolet, Barbara S; Miller, Scott N; Tedrow, Christy A; Bailey, Charles L; Strickman, Daniel A; Barnard, Donald R; Clark, Gary G; Zou, Li

    2007-01-01

    The authors developed a monitoring and risk mapping system using normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) times series data derived from the advanced very high resolution radiometer (AVHRR) instrument on polar orbiting national oceanographic and atmospheric administration (NOAA) satellites to map areas with a potential for a Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks in sub-Saharan Africa. This system is potentially an important tool for local, national and international organisations involved in the prevention and control of animal and human disease, permitting focused and timely implementation of disease control strategies several months before an outbreak. We are currently developing a geographic information system (GIS)-based remotely sensed early warning system for potential RVF vectors in the United States. Forecasts of the potential emergence of mosquito vectors will be disseminated throughout the United States, providing several months' warning in advance of potentially elevated mosquito populations. This would allow timely, targeted implementation of mosquito control, animal quarantine and vaccine strategies to reduce or prevent animal and human disease. PMID:20422546

  7. Forecasting the Temporal and Spatial Distribution of a Rift Valley fever Outbreak in East Africa: 2006-2007

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) related climate anomalies have been shown to have a direct impact on Rift Valley fever (RVF) disease outbreaks. Knowledge of the links between ENSO driven climate anomalies and RVF can allow us to provide improved long range forecasts of an epidemic or epizootic. ...

  8. Application of knowledge-driven spatial modelling approaches and uncertainty management to a study of Rift Valley fever in Africa

    PubMed Central

    Clements, Archie CA; Pfeiffer, Dirk U; Martin, Vincent

    2006-01-01

    Background There are few studies that have investigated uncertainties surrounding the scientific community's knowledge of the geographical distribution of major animal diseases. This is particularly relevant to Rift Valley fever (RVF), a zoonotic disease causing destructive outbreaks in livestock and man, as the geographical range of the disease is widening to involve previously unaffected regions. In the current study we investigate the application of methods developed in the decision sciences: multiple criteria decision making using weighted linear combination and ordered weighted averages, and Dempster-Shafer theory, implemented within the geographical information system IDRISI, to obtain a greater understanding of uncertainty related to the geographical distribution of RVF. The focus is on presenting alternate methods where extensive field data are not available and traditional, model-based approaches to disease mapping are impossible to conduct. Results Using a compensatory multiple criteria decision making model based on weighted linear combination, most of sub-Saharan Africa was suitable for endemic circulation of RVF. In contrast, areas where rivers and lakes traversed semi-arid regions, such as those bordering the Sahara, were highly suitable for RVF epidemics and wet, tropical areas of central Africa had low suitability. Using a moderately non-compensatory model based on ordered weighted averages, the areas considered suitable for endemic and epidemic RVF were more restricted. Varying the relative weights of the different factors in the models did not affect suitability estimates to a large degree, but variations in model structure had a large impact on our suitability estimates. Our Dempster-Shafer analysis supported the belief that a range of semi-arid areas were suitable for RVF epidemics and the plausibility that many other areas of the continent were suitable. Areas where high levels of uncertainty were highlighted included the Ethiopian Highlands

  9. 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

  10. 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...

  11. [Epidemiology of Rift Valley fever in western Africa. I. Serologic survey in domestic ruminants of Burkina Faso].

    PubMed

    Akakpo, A J; Some, M J; Bornarel, P; Jouan, A; Gonzalez, J P

    1989-01-01

    A serosurvey of Rift valley fever virus infection has been conducted among 2,410 domestic ruminants (sheep, goats and cattle) from Burkina Faso in 1985, 1986 and 1987. An active circulation of virus was demonstrated and 26.7% of the total animal tested had Rift valley fever virus reacting antibodies. An epizootic was demonstrated retrospectively for 1987 and appears to correspond to the RVF outbreak observed in the same type of sahelian environment during the same year in Mauritania. Analogous ecoclimatic and environmental risk factors are discussed. Others phleboviruses such as Arumowot, Gordil, Saint-Floris, Gabek Forest and Odrenisrou seem to be active in some areas but no evidence of pathogenesis for domestic ruminants was demonstrated. PMID:2766443

  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. 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

  14. 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. PMID:20967567

  15. 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.

  16. 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 ...

  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. Predicting the Next Outbreak of Rift Valley Fever (RVF)

    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, 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 more suscep...

  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. Some characteristics of aftershock sequences of major earthquakes from 1994 to 2002 in the Kivu province, Western Rift Valley of Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mavonga, Tuluka

    2007-07-01

    The temporal and spatial distribution of the aftershock sequences of the Ruwenzori (February 5, 1994, Mb (5.8)), Masisi (April 29, 1995, Mb (5.1)) and Kalehe (October 24, 2002, Mb (5.9)) earthquakes have been studied. It has been found that most of the aftershocks of the Ruwenzori earthquake are located on the eastern flank of the main escarpment and those of the Masisi earthquake are confined to the northwest of Lake Kivu margin where earthquake occurrence of swarm-type was normally observed. The Kalehe earthquake occurred in the central part of Lake Kivu and it was the largest earthquake observed in the Lake Kivu basin since 1900. The rate of decrease in aftershock activity with the time has shown that the p-value for Ruwenzori and Masisi earthquake equals 0.6, somehow smaller than that found in other geotectonic zones where p is close to 1. The p-value of the Kalehe earthquake is a normal value equal to 1. From an area delimited by spatial distribution of aftershocks, the linear dimension of the fault was estimated. The fault area determined in this study correlates well with those of previous studies which occurred in the Western Rift Valley of Africa including the Tanganyika and Upemba Rift.

  3. 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...

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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 vet...

  5. 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

  6. 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...

  7. Modeling the distribution of the West Nile and Rift Valley Fever vector Culex pipiens in arid and semi-arid regions of the Middle East and North Africa

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The Middle East North Africa (MENA) region is under continuous threat of the re-emergence of West Nile virus (WNV) and Rift Valley Fever virus (RVF), two pathogens transmitted by the vector species Culex pipiens. Predicting areas at high risk for disease transmission requires an accurate model of vector distribution, however, most Cx. pipiens distribution modeling has been confined to temperate, forested habitats. Modeling species distributions across a heterogeneous landscape structure requires a flexible modeling method to capture variation in mosquito response to predictors as well as occurrence data points taken from a sufficient range of habitat types. Methods We used presence-only data from Egypt and Lebanon to model the population distribution of Cx. pipiens across a portion of the MENA that also encompasses Jordan, Syria, and Israel. Models were created with a set of environmental predictors including bioclimatic data, human population density, hydrological data, and vegetation indices, and built using maximum entropy (Maxent) and boosted regression tree (BRT) methods. Models were created with and without the inclusion of human population density. Results Predictions of Maxent and BRT models were strongly correlated in habitats with high probability of occurrence (Pearson’s r = 0.774, r = 0.734), and more moderately correlated when predicting into regions that exceeded the range of the training data (r = 0.666,r = 0.558). All models agreed in predicting high probability of occupancy around major urban areas, along the banks of the Nile, the valleys of Israel, Lebanon, and Jordan, and southwestern Saudi Arabia. The most powerful predictors of Cx. pipiens habitat were human population density (60.6% Maxent models, 34.9% BRT models) and the seasonality of the enhanced vegetation index (EVI) (44.7% Maxent, 16.3% BRT). Maxent models tended to be dominated by a single predictor. Areas of high probability corresponded with sites of

  8. Development of Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assays Using Expressed Proteins of Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a member of the genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae that can cause severe disease in both humans and animals. The disease is enzootic in sub-Saharan Africa and RVFV epidemics/epizootics occur periodically, primarily in eastern and southern Africa. Since the virus...

  9. An investigation into an outbreak of Rift Valley fever on a cattle farm in Bela-Bela, South Africa, in 2008.

    PubMed

    Mapaco, Lourenço P; Coetzer, Jacobus A W; Paweska, Janusz T; Venter, Estelle H

    2012-01-01

    In 2008, a suspected outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) was reported on a farm in the Bela-Bela area, Limpopo Province, South Africa. Seven calves died on the affected dairy farm, where no RVF vaccination programme was practised. No apparent clinical disease was reported in the other 300 cattle (33 calves included) or 200 sheep on the farm. During the outbreak, blood samples from 77.7% (233/300) of the cattle and 36.5% (73/200) of the sheep were collected on the affected farm and 55 blood samples were taken from cattle on a neighbouring farm. Eight weeks later, 78% of the cattle (234/300) and 42.5% of the sheep (85/200) were bled on the affected farm only. All sera were tested by an Immunoglobulin M (IgM)-capture Enzymelinked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and by an indirect Immunoglobulin G (IgG) ELISA. Selected IgM-positive (n = 14), IgG-positive (n = 23) and samples negative for both IgM and IgG-specific antibodies against RVF virus (n = 19) were tested using the serum neutralisation test (SNT). Sera from IgM-positive (n = 14) and negative (n = 20) animals were also tested by a TaqMan polymerase chain reaction (PCR). On the affected farm, 7% (16/233) of the cattle were IgM-positive and 13.7% (32/233) IgG-positive at the first bleed and 2% were IgM-positive at the second bleed, whilst the number of cattle positive for IgG-specific antibodies increased by 21.3% compared with the first bleed. Only 1.4% of sheep were positive for both IgM and IgG antibodies at the first collection; at the second bleed, IgM-positive cases decreased to 1.2%, whilst IgG-positive cases increased to 2.4%. Whilst no IgM-positive cattle were found on the neighbouring farm, 5.5% of cattle were IgG-positive. The SNT confirmed most of the ELISA results, whilst PCR results were all negative. Although serology results indicated virus circulation on both farms, the negative PCR results demonstrated that the animals were not viraemic at the time they were sampled. The movement of infected mosquito

  10. Rainfall and epizootic Rift Valley fever*

    PubMed Central

    Davies, F. G.; Linthicum, K. J.; James, A. D.

    1985-01-01

    Epizootic Rift Valley fever (RVF) has occurred in Kenya four times over the last 30 years. Widespread, frequent, and persistent rainfall has been a feature of these epizootic periods. A composite statistic, based upon measurements of these rainfall characteristics, is positive during periods of epizootic Rift Valley fever. The heavy rainfall raises the level of the water table in certain areas, flooding the grassland depressions (dambos) that are the habitat of the immature forms of certain ground-pool-breeding mosquitos of the genus Aedes. RVF virus is probably transmitted transovarially in these species, very large numbers of which emerge under these damp conditions. This is when clinical signs of the disease are first seen. PMID:3879206

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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...

  14. CURRENT ISSUES AND CONCERNS REGARDING RIFT VALLEY FEVER, AN EMERGING VIRUS THREAT

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is a mosquito-borne zoonotic hemorrhagic disease that causes 100% abortions in cattle, sheep, and goats and is often fatal to young animals. Though currently confined mainly to Africa this disease could be introduced into the U.S. and spread via mosquitoes at least as ...

  15. New Diagnostic Tools for Detecting Rift Valley Fever (RVF) and other Arboviruses

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The outbreak of West Nile virus in the United Sates and the recent outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus in East Africa have highlighted the need for validated early detection tools for arthropod-borne animal diseases. The Arthropod-Borne Animal Diseases Research Laboratory (ABADRL) has been inv...

  16. 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...

  17. 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 ...

  18. 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...

  19. 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...

  20. 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...

  1. 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...

  2. Rift Valley fever risk map model and seroprevalence in selected wild ungulates and camels from Kenya

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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...

  3. Rift Valley Fever Virus Control: Integration of Virus, Host and Vector Studies

    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 epizootics occur during years of unusually heavy rainfall. Domestic cattle, sheep and goats are highly susceptible to i...

  4. Potential for stable flies and house flies (Diptera: Muscidae) to transmit Rift Valley fever virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), a disease of ruminants and humans, has been responsible for large outbreaks in Africa that have resulted in hundreds of thousands of human infections and major economic disruption due to loss of livestock and to trade restrictions. As indicated by the rapid spread of West N...

  5. Modeling the Spatial Spread of Rift Valley Fever in Egypt

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Daozhou; Cosner, Chris; Cantrell, Robert Stephen; Beier, John C.; Ruan, Shigui

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a severe viral zoonosis in Africa and the Middle East that harms both human health and livestock production. It is believed that RVF in Egypt has been repeatedly introduced by the importation of infected animals from Sudan. In this paper, we propose a three-patch model for the process by which animals enter Egypt from Sudan, are moved up the Nile, and then consumed at population centers. The basic reproduction number for each patch is introduced and then the threshold dynamics of the model are established. We simulate an interesting scenario showing a possible explanation of the observed phenomenon of the geographic spread of RVF in Egypt. PMID:23377629

  6. 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

  7. 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

  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. 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.

  10. 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...

  11. Towards a better understanding of Rift Valley fever epidemiology in the south-west of the Indian Ocean

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (Phlebovirus, Bunyaviridae) is an arbovirus causing intermittent epizootics and sporadic epidemics primarily in East Africa. Infection causes severe and often fatal illness in young sheep, goats and cattle. Domestic animals and humans can be contaminated by close contact with infectious tissues or through mosquito infectious bites. Rift Valley fever virus was historically restricted to sub-Saharan countries. The probability of Rift Valley fever emerging in virgin areas is likely to be increasing. Its geographical range has extended over the past years. As a recent example, autochthonous cases of Rift Valley fever were recorded in 2007–2008 in Mayotte in the Indian Ocean. It has been proposed that a single infected animal that enters a naive country is sufficient to initiate a major outbreak before Rift Valley fever virus would ever be detected. Unless vaccines are available and widely used to limit its expansion, Rift Valley fever will continue to be a critical issue for human and animal health in the region of the Indian Ocean. PMID:24016237

  12. Characterisation of immune responses and protective efficacy in mice after immunisation with Rift Valley Fever virus cDNA constructs

    PubMed Central

    Lagerqvist, Nina; Näslund, Jonas; Lundkvist, Åke; Bouloy, Michèle; Ahlm, Clas; Bucht, Göran

    2009-01-01

    Background Affecting both livestock and humans, Rift Valley Fever is considered as one of the most important viral zoonoses in Africa. However, no licensed vaccines or effective treatments are yet available for human use. Naked DNA vaccines are an interesting approach since the virus is highly infectious and existing attenuated Rift Valley Fever virus vaccine strains display adverse effects in animal trials. In this study, gene-gun immunisations with cDNA encoding structural proteins of the Rift Valley Fever virus were evaluated in mice. The induced immune responses were analysed for the ability to protect mice against virus challenge. Results Immunisation with cDNA encoding the nucleocapsid protein induced strong humoral and lymphocyte proliferative immune responses, and virus neutralising antibodies were acquired after vaccination with cDNA encoding the glycoproteins. Even though complete protection was not achieved by genetic immunisation, four out of eight, and five out of eight mice vaccinated with cDNA encoding the nucleocapsid protein or the glycoproteins, respectively, displayed no clinical signs of infection after challenge. In contrast, all fourteen control animals displayed clinical manifestations of Rift Valley Fever after challenge. Conclusion The appearance of Rift Valley Fever associated clinical signs were significantly decreased among the DNA vaccinated mice and further adjustment of this strategy may result in full protection against Rift Valley Fever. PMID:19149901

  13. 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... Rift Valley Fever Virus Utilizing Reverse Genetics,'' US Provisional Application 61/ ] 042,987, filed 4/7/2008, entitled ``Recombinant Rift Valley Fever (RVF) Viruses and Method of Use,'' PCT...

  14. An Assembly Model of Rift Valley Fever Virus

    PubMed Central

    Rusu, Mirabela; Bonneau, Richard; Holbrook, Michael R.; Watowich, Stanley J.; Birmanns, Stefan; Wriggers, Willy; Freiberg, Alexander N.

    2012-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a bunyavirus endemic to Africa and the Arabian Peninsula that infects humans and livestock. The virus encodes two glycoproteins, Gn and Gc, which represent the major structural antigens and are responsible for host cell receptor binding and fusion. Both glycoproteins are organized on the virus surface as cylindrical hollow spikes that cluster into distinct capsomers with the overall assembly exhibiting an icosahedral symmetry. Currently, no experimental three-dimensional structure for any entire bunyavirus glycoprotein is available. Using fold recognition, we generated molecular models for both RVFV glycoproteins and found significant structural matches between the RVFV Gn protein and the influenza virus hemagglutinin protein and a separate match between RVFV Gc protein and Sindbis virus envelope protein E1. Using these models, the potential interaction and arrangement of both glycoproteins in the RVFV particle was analyzed, by modeling their placement within the cryo-electron microscopy density map of RVFV. We identified four possible arrangements of the glycoproteins in the virion envelope. Each assembly model proposes that the ectodomain of Gn forms the majority of the protruding capsomer and that Gc is involved in formation of the capsomer base. Furthermore, Gc is suggested to facilitate intercapsomer connections. The proposed arrangement of the two glycoproteins on the RVFV surface is similar to that described for the alphavirus E1-E2 proteins. Our models will provide guidance to better understand the assembly process of phleboviruses and such structural studies can also contribute to the design of targeted antivirals. PMID:22837754

  15. Protein Phosphatase-1 regulates Rift Valley fever virus replication.

    PubMed

    Baer, Alan; Shafagati, Nazly; Benedict, Ashwini; Ammosova, Tatiana; Ivanov, Andrey; Hakami, Ramin M; Terasaki, Kaori; Makino, Shinji; Nekhai, Sergei; Kehn-Hall, Kylene

    2016-03-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), genus Phlebovirus family Bunyaviridae, is an arthropod-borne virus endemic throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Recent outbreaks have resulted in cyclic epidemics with an increasing geographic footprint, devastating both livestock and human populations. Despite being recognized as an emerging threat, relatively little is known about the virulence mechanisms and host interactions of RVFV. To date there are no FDA approved therapeutics or vaccines for RVF and there is an urgent need for their development. The Ser/Thr protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) has previously been shown to play a significant role in the replication of several viruses. Here we demonstrate for the first time that PP1 plays a prominent role in RVFV replication early on during the viral life cycle. Both siRNA knockdown of PP1α and a novel PP1-targeting small molecule compound 1E7-03, resulted in decreased viral titers across several cell lines. Deregulation of PP1 was found to inhibit viral RNA production, potentially through the disruption of viral RNA transcript/protein interactions, and indicates a potential link between PP1α and the viral L polymerase and nucleoprotein. These results indicate that PP1 activity is important for RVFV replication early on during the viral life cycle and may prove an attractive therapeutic target. PMID:26801627

  16. 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

  17. Understanding the spatial and temporal distribution of potential mosquito vectors of Rift Valley fever in the U.S.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic hemorrhagic viral disease confined primarily to sub-Saharan Africa. In RVF endemic regions human and livestock populations suffer prominent health and economic impacts during RVF outbreaks. RVF virus is listed as an overlap Select Agent by both ...

  18. 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...

  19. 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

  20. 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

  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. 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)

  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. 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

  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. Interepidemic Rift Valley Fever Virus Seropositivity, Northeastern Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Muchiri, Eric M.; Ndzovu, Malik; Mwanje, Mariam T.; Muiruri, Samuel; Peters, Clarence J.; King, Charles H.

    2008-01-01

    Most outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) occur in remote locations after floods. To determine environmental risk factors and long-term sequelae of human RVF, we examined rates of previous Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) exposure by age and location during an interepidemic period in 2006. In a randomized household cluster survey in 2 areas of Ijara District, Kenya, we examined 248 residents of 2 sublocations, Gumarey (village) and Sogan-Godud (town). Overall, the RVFV seropositivity rate was 13% according to immunoglobulin G ELISA; evidence of interepidemic RVFV transmission was detected. Increased seropositivity was found among older persons, those who were male, those who lived in the rural village (Gumarey), and those who had disposed of animal abortus. Rural Gumarey reported more mosquito and animal exposure than Sogan-Godud. Seropositive persons were more likely to have visual impairment and retinal lesions; other physical findings did not differ. PMID:18680647

  9. Potential for Autoimmune Pathogenesis of Rift Valley Fever Virus Retinitis

    PubMed Central

    Newman-Gerhardt, Shoshana; Muiruri, Samuel; Muchiri, Eric; Peters, Clarence J.; Morrill, John; Lucas, Alexander H.; King, Charles H.; Kazura, James; LaBeaud, Angelle Desiree

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is a significant threat to human health because it can progress to retinitis, encephalitis, and hemorrhagic fever. The timing of onset of Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV) retinitis suggests an autoimmune origin. To determine whether RVFV retinitis is associated with increased levels of IgG against retinal tissue, we measured and compared levels of IgG against healthy human eye tissue by immunohistochemical analysis. We found that serum samples from RVFV-exposed Kenyans with retinitis (n = 8) were slightly more likely to have antibodies against retinal tissue than control populations, but the correlation was not statistically significant. Further investigation into the possible immune pathogenesis of RVFV retinitis could lead to improved therapies to prevent or treat this severe complication. PMID:23918215

  10. 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

  11. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Linthicum, K J; Bailey, C L; Davies, F G; Tucker, C J

    1987-03-27

    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. PMID:3823909

  13. Rift Valley fever virus: Unanswered questions.

    PubMed

    Bird, Brian H; McElroy, Anita K

    2016-08-01

    This mosquito-borne pathogen of humans and animals respects no international or geographic boundaries. It is currently found in parts of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula where periodic outbreaks of severe and fatal disease occur, and threatens to spread into other geographic regions. In recent years, modern molecular techniques have led to many breakthroughs deepening our understanding of the mechanisms of RVFV virulence, phylogenetics, and the creation of several next-generation vaccine candidates. Despite tremendous progress in these areas, other challenges remain in RVF disease pathogenesis, the virus life-cycle, and outbreak response preparedness that deserve our attention. Here we discuss and highlight ten key knowledge gaps and challenges in RVFV research. Answers to these key questions may lead to the development of new effective therapeutics and enhanced control strategies for this serious human and veterinary health threat. PMID:27400990

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  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. 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.

  20. Indirect detection of subsurface outflow from a rift valley lake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darling, W. G.; Allen, D. J.; Armannsson, H.

    1990-02-01

    Naivasha, highest of the Kenya (Gregory) Rift Valley lakes, has no surface outlet. However, unlike other Rift lakes it has not become saline despite high potential evaporation rates, which indicates that there must be some subsurface drainage. The fate of this outflow has been the subject of speculation for many years, especially during the general decline in lake water level during the 1980's. Particularly to the south of the lake, there are few opportunities to obtain information from direct groundwater sampling. However, the stable isotopic composition of fumarole steam from late Quaternary volcanic centres in the area has been used to infer groundwater composition. Using a simple mixing model between Rift-flank groundwater and highly-evaporated lakewater, this has enabled subsurface water flow to be contoured by its lakewater content. By this method, outflow can still be detected some 30 km to the south of the lake. Stable isotope data also confirm that much of the steam used by the local Olkaria geothermal power station is derived from lakewater, though simple balance considerations show that steam use cannot alone be responsible for the fall in lake level observed during the 1980's.

  1. Evaluation of efficacy, potential for vector transmission and duration of immunity testing of MP-12, an attenuated Rift Valley fever virus vaccine candidate, in sheep

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes serious disease in ruminants and humans in Africa. There are currently no fully licensed vaccines for this arthropod-borne virus in the US. Studies in sheep and cattle have found an attenuated strain of RVFV, MP-12, to be both safe and efficacious, and a conditi...

  2. 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...

  3. 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...

  4. Early Cretaceous rifts of Western and Central Africa: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guiraud, René; Maurin, Jean-Christophe

    1992-10-01

    The structure and evolution of Early Cretaceous rift basins in Western and Central Africa are described. Two stages of rift development and fracturing have been identified: (1) from Neocomian to Early Aptian roughly E-W and NW trending troughs (Upper Benue, N Cameroon, S Chad, Sudan etc.) opened in response to a submeridian extensional regime in Central Africa while in Western Africa the N-S trending transsaharian fault zone acted as a sinistral wrench; (2) from Middle Aptian to Late Albian large northwest trending troughs (E Niger, Sudan, Sirte, etc.) opened in response to a northeast extensional regime while the Central African fault zone (from Benue to Sudan) exhibited strike-slip movements, generating pull-apart basins. These rift and fracture systems delimit three large blocks within the African plate: a Western block, an Arabian-Nubian block and an Austral block. The Arabian-Nubian block tends to separate from the two other blocks, migrating towards the north during the first stage of basin development and then towards the NE during the second stage. The opening of the Atlantic Ocean was the dominant driving force for the Western and Austral blocks while the Arabian-Nubian block probably moved in response to the opening of the Indian Ocean and to the evolution of the Tethyan margin.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. Rift Valley Fever during Rainy Seasons, Madagascar, 2008 and 2009

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2010-01-01

    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. PMID:20507747

  9. Ultrastructural pathology of human liver in Rift Valley fever.

    PubMed

    Shraim, Mubarak Al; Eid, Refaat; Radad, Khaled; Saeed, Noora

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic disease that primarily affects ruminant animals and can also cause fatal disease in humans. In the current report, we present the ultrastructural changes in the liver of a man aged 60 years who died from RVF in the Aseer Central Hospital, Abha, Saudi Arabia. The main hepatic changes by transmission electron microscopy included the presence of 95-115 nm electron-dense particles consistent with RVF virions, nuclear condensation, vacuolar degeneration, lipid droplet accumulation and mitochondrial damage and dilation. There were also viral inclusion bodies with electron-dense aggregates, dilation of intercellular spaces, damage of sinusoidal microvilli with widening of space of Disse, dilation of bile canaliculi and increasing number of phagolysosomes. PMID:27485877

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. A Review of Mosquitoes Associated with Rift Valley Fever Virus in Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    Tantely, Luciano M.; Boyer, Sébastien; Fontenille, Didier

    2015-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a viral zoonotic disease occurring throughout Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, and Madagascar. The disease is caused by a Phlebovirus (RVF virus [RVFV]) transmitted to vertebrate hosts through the bite of infected mosquitoes. In Madagascar, the first RVFV circulation was reported in 1979 based on detection in mosquitoes but without epidemic episode. Subsequently, two outbreaks occurred: the first along the east coast and in the central highlands in 1990 and 1991 and the most recent along the northern and eastern coasts and in the central highlands in 2008 and 2009. Despite the presence of 24 mosquitoes species potentially associated with RVFV transmission in Madagascar, little associated entomological information is available. In this review, we list the RVFV vector, Culex antennatus, as well as other taxa as candidate vector species. We discuss risk factors from an entomological perspective for the re-emergence of RVF in Madagascar. PMID:25732680

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Potential for North American Mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) to Transmit Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    To determine which biting insects should be targeted for control should Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) be detected in North America, we evaluated Culex erraticus, Culex erythrothorax, Culex pipiens, Culex quinquefasciatus, Culex tarsalis, Aedes dorsalis, Aedes vexans, Anopheles quadrimaculatus, and ...

  16. 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

  17. A Haploid Genetic Screen Identifies Heparan Sulfate Proteoglycans Supporting Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection

    PubMed Central

    Riblett, Amber M.; Blomen, Vincent A.; Jae, Lucas T.; Altamura, Louis A.; Doms, Robert W.; Brummelkamp, Thijn R.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes recurrent insect-borne epizootics throughout the African continent, and infection of humans can lead to a lethal hemorrhagic fever syndrome. Deep mutagenesis of haploid human cells was used to identify host factors required for RVFV infection. This screen identified a suite of enzymes involved in glycosaminoglycan (GAG) biogenesis and transport, including several components of the cis-oligomeric Golgi (COG) complex, one of the central components of Golgi complex trafficking. In addition, disruption of PTAR1 led to RVFV resistance as well as reduced heparan sulfate surface levels, consistent with recent observations that PTAR1-deficient cells exhibit altered Golgi complex morphology and glycosylation defects. A variety of biochemical and genetic approaches were utilized to show that both pathogenic and attenuated RVFV strains require GAGs for efficient infection on some, but not all, cell types, with the block to infection being at the level of virion attachment. Examination of other members of the Bunyaviridae family for GAG-dependent infection suggested that the interaction with GAGs is not universal among bunyaviruses, indicating that these viruses, as well as RVFV on certain cell types, employ additional unidentified virion attachment factors and/or receptors. IMPORTANCE Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an emerging pathogen that can cause severe disease in humans and animals. Epizootics among livestock populations lead to high mortality rates and can be economically devastating. Human epidemics of Rift Valley fever, often initiated by contact with infected animals, are characterized by a febrile disease that sometimes leads to encephalitis or hemorrhagic fever. The global burden of the pathogen is increasing because it has recently disseminated beyond Africa, which is of particular concern because the virus can be transmitted by widely distributed mosquito species. There are no FDA-licensed vaccines or antiviral

  18. 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.

  19. Surveillance of Rift Valley Fever Virus in Mosquito Vectors of the Republic of Korea.

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an acute mosquito-borne viral zoonotic disease that affects mainly domestic ruminants and humans. RVF virus (RVFV) was first identified in Kenya in 1931 and was reported to be endemic in Africa but has recently spread to the Arabian Peninsula. With increasing climate change and globalization of trade in animals and animal products, there is great concern that the disease will spread worldwide to regions such as Europe, Asia, and the Americas. Although RVFV has not been reported in the Republic of Korea (ROK), the possibility of RVFV introduction is increasing because transmissible mosquito vectors are present and direct flights to Africa were added in 2012. For these reasons, we conducted a surveillance study to detect RVFV in mosquito vectors collected around the airport and harbor from 2012 to 2013. A total of 36,734 mosquitoes were collected and tested by real-time RT-PCR. A total of 1837 mosquito pools were used, and all were confirmed to be negative. This is the first report in the ROK concerning RVFV surveillance in mosquito vectors, and continuous surveillance will be conducted for the early warning of RVFV introduction. PMID:26771529

  20. 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. PMID:17268404

  1. Evaporation estimation of rift valley lakes: comparison of models.

    PubMed

    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

  2. Response to Rift Valley Fever in Tanzania: Challenges and Opportunities.

    PubMed

    Fyumagwa, Robert D; Ezekiel, Mangi J; Nyaki, Athanas; Mdaki, Maulid L; Katale, Zablon B; Moshiro, Candida; Keyyu, Julius D

    2011-12-01

    Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is an arthropod borne viral disease affecting livestock (cattle, sheep, goats and camels), wildlife and humans caused by Phlebovirus. The disease occurs in periodic cycles of 4-15 years associated with flooding from unusually high precipitations in many flood-prone habitats. Aedes and Culex spp and other mosquito species are important epidemic vectors. Because of poor living conditions and lack of knowledge on the pathogenesis of RVF, nomadic pastoralists and agro-pastoralists are at high risk of contracting the disease during epidemics. RVF is a professional hazard for health and livestock workers because of poor biosafety measures in routine activities including lack of proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Direct exposure to infected animals can occur during handling and slaughter or through veterinary and obstetric procedures or handling of specimens in laboratory. The episodic nature of the disease creates special challenges for its mitigation and control and many of the epidemics happen when the governments are not prepared and have limited resource to contain the disease at source. Since its first description in 1930s Tanzania has recorded six epidemics, three of which were after independence in 1961. However, the 2007 epidemic was the most notable and wide spread with fatal human cases among pastoralists and agro-pastoralists concurrent with high livestock mortality. Given all the knowledge that exist on the epidemiology of the disease, still the 2006/2007 epidemic occurred when the government of Tanzania was not prepared to contain the disease at source. This paper reviews the epidemiology, reporting and outbreak-investigation, public awareness, preparedness plans and policy as well as challenges for its control in Tanzania. PMID:26591988

  3. 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

  4. 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. PMID:27402440

  5. 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

  6. Potency of a thermostabilised chimpanzee adenovirus Rift Valley Fever vaccine in cattle.

    PubMed

    Dulal, Pawan; Wright, Daniel; Ashfield, Rebecca; Hill, Adrian V S; Charleston, Bryan; Warimwe, George M

    2016-04-29

    Development of safe and efficacious vaccines whose potency is unaffected by long-term storage at ambient temperature would obviate major vaccine deployment hurdles and limit wastage associated with breaks in the vaccine cold chain. Here, we evaluated the immunogenicity of a novel chimpanzee adenovirus vectored Rift Valley Fever vaccine (ChAdOx1-GnGc) in cattle, following its thermostabilisation by slow desiccation on glass fiber membranes in the non-reducing sugars trehalose and sucrose. Thermostabilised ChAdOx1-GnGc vaccine stored for 6 months at 25, 37 or 45 ° C elicited comparable Rift Valley Fever virus neutralising antibody titres to those elicited by the 'cold chain' vaccine (stored at -80 ° C throughout) at the same dose, and these were within the range associated with protection against Rift Valley Fever in cattle. The results support the use of sugar-membrane thermostabilised vaccines in target livestock species. PMID:27020712

  7. 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

  8. 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.../016,065, filed 12/21/2007, entitled ``Development of Rift Valley Fever Virus Utilizing Reverse... (RVF) Viruses and Method of Use,'' PCT Application PCT/US2008/087023, filed 12/16/2008,...

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Inhibition of Rift Valley Fever Virus Replication and Perturbation of Nucleocapsid-RNA Interactions by Suramin

    PubMed Central

    Ellenbecker, Mary; Lanchy, Jean-Marc

    2014-01-01

    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. There are currently no proven safe and effective treatment options for RVFV infection. Inhibition of RNA binding to RVFV nucleocapsid protein (N) represents an attractive antiviral therapeutic strategy because several essential steps in the RVFV replication cycle involve N binding to viral RNA. In this study, we demonstrate the therapeutic potential of the drug suramin by showing that it functions well as an inhibitor of RVFV replication at multiple stages in human cell culture. Suramin has been used previously to treat trypanosomiasis in Africa. We characterize the dynamic and cooperative nature of N-RNA binding interactions and the dissociation of high-molecular-mass ribonucleoprotein complexes using suramin, which we previously identified as an N-RNA binding inhibitor in a high-throughput screen. Finally, we elucidate the molecular mechanism used by suramin in vitro to disrupt both specific and nonspecific binding events important for ribonucleoprotein formation. PMID:25267680

  13. Respiratory infectivity of a recently isolated Egyptian strain of Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed Central

    Brown, J L; Dominik, J W; Morrissey, R L

    1981-01-01

    The respiratory infectivity of a strain of Rift Valley fever virus isolated in Egypt (strain ZH-501) was compared with that of one isolate from Uganda (Entebbe strain) and two isolates from South Africa (strains SA-51 and SA-75). Studies were performed with ICR mice which were infected by exposure to infectious aerosols composed of particles with a mass median diameter of 0.96 micrometer. The respiratory median lethal doses for ZH-501, Entebbe, SA-51, and SA-75 were 2.2, 1.9, 2.6, and 1.9 log10 plaque-forming units, respectively. Although these values are statistically different, the biological implications of such differences seem unimportant. In an additional study of pathogenesis, a single group of mice was infected with 3.1 log10 plaque-forming units of ZH-501, and tissues were assayed sequentially through 96 h postinfection. Between 6 and 30 h, demonstration of an increasing virus concentration only in the lungs indicated that initial replication occurred there; however, determination of histopathological changes did not reveal evidence of pneumonia. Virus was isolated from the liver by 48 h, and the ultimate outcome of infection was a fulminating and fatal hepatic necrosis. PMID:7287187

  14. 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

  15. Development and characterization of Rift Valley fever virus-like particles.

    PubMed

    Li, Y T; Wang, C L; Zheng, X X; Wang, H L; Zhao, Y K; Gai, W W; Jin, H L; Gao, Y W; Li, N; Yang, S T; Xia, X Z

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an acute, febrile zoonotic disease that is caused by the RVF virus (RVFV) and spread by arthropod vectors. RVF is currently prevalent in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, and causes substantial economic losses. Furthermore, this disease poses a serious threat to animal and human health in regions worldwide, making it a serious public health concern. However, RVFV vaccines for human use are still unavailable, and hence there is an urgent need for novel efficient vaccines against RVFV. Vaccine preparation techniques have become a crucial factor in developing new vaccines. In the current study, the N and G protein genes of RVFV were inserted into the pFastBacDual baculovirus expression vector downstream of the pP10 and pPH promoters. The resultant recombinant vector, pFastBacDual-S-M, was transfected into Sf9 insect cells by lipofection. The recombinant baculovirus, named rBac-N-G, was retrieved and infected into Sf9 insect cells to generate RVFV virus-like particles (VLPs). Using polyclonal antibodies against RVFV proteins in immunofluorescence and western blot analyses, we positively identified the presence of the RVFV proteins in VLP preparations. Sucrose density gradient centrifugation and transmission electron microscopy revealed that the morphology of the RVFV VLPs was consistent with previous reports of RVFV virions. This study describes a technique for efficient production of RVFV VLPs, and has laid the foundation for future VLP-based RVFV vaccines. PMID:27050999

  16. Severe Rift Valley Fever May Present with a Characteristic Clinical Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Kahlon, Summerpal S.; Peters, Clarence J.; LeDuc, James; Muchiri, Eric M.; Muiruri, Samuel; Njenga, M. Kariuki; Breiman, Robert F.; Clinton White, A.; King, Charles H.

    2010-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is an emerging pathogen that is transmitted in many regions of sub-Saharan Africa, parts of Egypt, and the Arabian peninsula. Outbreaks of RVF, like other diseases caused by hemorrhagic fever viruses, typically present in locations with very limited health resources, where initial diagnosis must be based only on history and physical examination. Although general signs and symptoms of human RVF have been documented, a specific clinical syndrome has not been described. In 2007, a Kenyan outbreak of RVF provided opportunity to assess acutely ill RVF patients and better delineate its presentation and clinical course. Our data reveal an identifiable clinical syndrome suggestive of severe RVF, characterized by fever, large-joint arthralgia, and gastrointestinal complaints and later followed by jaundice, right upper-quadrant pain, and delirium, often coinciding with hemorrhagic manifestations. Further characterization of a distinct RVF clinical syndrome will aid earlier detection of RVF outbreaks and should allow more rapid implementation of control. PMID:20207858

  17. 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

  18. Wicking assay for the rapid detection of Rift Valley fever viral antigens in mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae).

    PubMed

    Turell, M; Davé, K; Mayda, M; Parker, Z; Coleman, R; Davé, S; Strickman, D

    2011-05-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes outbreaks of severe disease in domestic ungulates as well as humans in Africa. There is a logical concern that RVFV could be introduced into the Americas and cause significant health and economic damage based on the precedent of the introduction and spread of West Nile virus (WNV). Unfortunately, there are currently no licensed diagnostic assays available for RVFV in the Americas. In this work, we report on the ability of a novel dipstick assay, VectorTest RVFV antigen assay, modeled on the VecTest assay for WNV, to detect a RVFV-infected female within a pool of mosquitoes. The dipsticks provided results in <20 min, were easy to use, and did not require a laboratory with containment facilities. Although readily able to detect a mosquito with a disseminated RVFV infection, it only occasionally detected RVFV in a mosquito with a nondisseminated infection, and therefore may fail to detect some pools that actually contain one or more positive mosquitoes. The RVFV dipstick assay was highly specific and did not react with samples to which had been added yellow fever, West Nile, Venezuelan equine encephalitis, sandfly fever Naples, sandfly fever Sicilian, or sandfly fever Toscana viruses. The RVFV assay can provide a rapid, safe, easy-to-use assay to alert public health personnel to the presence of RVFV in mosquitoes. Results from this assay will allow a rapid threat assessment and the focusing of vector control measures in high-risk areas. PMID:21661324

  19. 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

  20. RIFT VALLEY FEVER VIRUS: AN EMERGING THREAT TO WILDLIFE, LIVESTOCK, AND HUMANS IN THE U.S. - A REVIEW OF ISSUES AND CONCERNS, AND A GIS EARLY WARNING SYSTEM FOR RVF VECTORS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is a mosquito-borne zoonotic hemorrhagic disease that causes 100% abortions in ungulates such as cattle, sheep, and goats, and is often fatal to young animals. Though currently confined mainly to Africa this disease could be introduced into the U.S. and spread via mosq...

  1. A REVIEW OF ISSUES AND CONCERNS OF RIFT VALLEY FEVER VIRUS, A POTENTIAL EMERGING THREAT TO LIVESTOCK, WILDLIFE, AND HUMANS IN THE U.S., AND A GIS EARLY WARNING SYSTEM FOR RVF VECTORS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is a mosquito-borne zoonotic hemorrhagic disease that causes 100% abortions in ungulates such as cattle, sheep, and goats, and is often fatal to young animals. Though currently confined mainly to Africa this disease could be introduced into the U.S. and spread via mosq...

  2. Negative gravity anomaly over spreading rift valleys: Mid-Atlantic Ridge at 26°N

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowin, Carl; Milligan, Julie

    1985-03-01

    A pronounced negative free-air gravity anomaly commonly occurs over the median valley of slow spreading ocean ridges. Previous results, using Wiener filtering and cross-spectral analysis techniques for the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, obtained estimates of the elastic plate thickness in the range of 7-13 km and the existence of a residual negative gravity anomaly over the median rift valley, suggesting that the rift valley has a response function different than the remainder of the spreading ridge. In this paper we have improved the derivation of the topography-gravity admittance function for spreading ocean crust by carefully avoiding several sources of spectral splattering when processing the data: (1) selecting data from a cruise that followed a flowline of central North Atlantic relative plate motion and hence is least corrupted by fracture zones; and (2) accounting for the difference in distance between the gravity meter and the regional variation in elevation as the ridge crest is traversed. Improvements of lesser importance include the use of cubic splines to interpolate to equally spaced data rather than linear interpolation, and correction of the free-air anomaly values for long-wavelength variations of the indirect effect. Comparison of the resulting admittance function to elastic flexure response functions suggests an elastic plate thickness of about 8 km. The improved admittance function, when convolved with the ridge topography, provides a predicted gravity profile that accounts very well for the negative anomaly over the rift valley. Therefore, the isostatic response function for the rift valley is similar to that for the topography away from the rift valley.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. SATELLITE-BASED RIFT VALLEY FEVER FORECASTS PREDICT A LARGE YELLOW FEVER EPIDEMIC IN SUDAN, 2005

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sustained, heavy East African rainfall is associated with Aedes spp. breeding in Kenyan grasslands and Rift Valley Fever (RVF) epidemics. Validated RVF forecasts use satellite measurements of vegetation greenness (which increases after heavy rains) and other eco-climate indicators. These models may ...

  8. Rift Valley Fever: International Coordinated Efforts from Early Warning to Rapid Responses

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Scientists at the USDA, ARS, Arthropod-Borne Animal Diseases Research Laboratory (ABADRL) initiated research to develop operator-safe, rapid diagnostic tests and develop large animal models for both virulent and vaccine strains of Rift Valley Fever (RVF). The ABADRL currently does not have biologica...

  9. 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...

  10. 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...

  11. 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...

  12. 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...

  13. 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…

  14. 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...

  15. 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...

  16. 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...

  17. Mosquitoes and the environment in Nile Delta villages with previous rift valley fever activity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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 t...

  18. Immunohistochemical Detection of Rift Valley Fever Virus with Non-Infectious, Recombinant Viral Protein Antibodies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes re-emerging disease outbreaks and abortion storms in mature cattle, sheep, and goats, and can cause 100% mortality in young animals. The spread of this exotic, insect transmitted virus is of particular concern because of its widely recognized potential for being...

  19. 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 ...

  20. 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...

  1. 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...

  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. Serological evidence in sheep suggesting phlebovirus circulation in a Rift Valley fever enzootic area in Burkina Faso.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, J P; Le Guenno, B; Some, M J; Akakpo, J A

    1992-01-01

    Within the Phlebovirus serogroup, Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is endemo-enzootic in the African sahelian zone. Recently an RVF epizootic in West Africa prompted a serosurvey in the major sheep and cattle raising areas. Because of the close antigenic relationship between the phleboviruses it appeared of interest to evaluate the prevalence of the other phleboviruses also. In 1987, 482 sheep serum samples were collected in 2 different ecological zones of Burkina Faso and tested for the presence of phlebovirus antibodies. A sensitive but non-specific immunofluorescent antibody test and a specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) were used, with the following African phlebovirus antigens: Rift Valley fever (RVF), Arumowot, Gabek Forest, Gordil, Saint Floris and Odrenisrou. A total of 15.8% of the sera sampled had anti-RVF antibody in the ELISA. RVF virus appeared to be more active in drier areas such as the sahelian region, known to be an enzootic area for the disease. Antibodies to other phleboviruses were found in 11.8% of the samples, independent of RVF virus activity. It is assumed that sheep can be infected by different phleboviruses. PMID:1287944

  4. 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

  5. Inter-epidemic Acquisition of Rift Valley Fever Virus in Humans in Tanzania

    PubMed Central

    Sumaye, Robert David; Abatih, Emmanuel Nji; Thiry, Etienne; Amuri, Mbaraka; Berkvens, Dirk; Geubbels, Eveline

    2015-01-01

    Background In East Africa, epidemics of Rift Valley fever (RVF) occur in cycles of 5–15 years following unusually high rainfall. RVF transmission during inter-epidemic periods (IEP) generally passes undetected in absence of surveillance in mammalian hosts and vectors. We studied IEP transmission of RVF and evaluated the demographic, behavioural, occupational and spatial determinants of past RVF infection. Methodology Between March and August 2012 we collected blood samples, and administered a risk factor questionnaire among 606 inhabitants of 6 villages in the seasonally inundated Kilombero Valley, Tanzania. ELISA tests were used to detect RVFV IgM and IgG antibodies in serum samples. Risk factors were examined by mixed effects logistic regression. Findings RVF virus IgM antibodies, indicating recent RVFV acquisition, were detected in 16 participants, representing 2.6% overall and in 22.5% of inhibition ELISA positives (n = 71). Four of 16 (25.0%) IgM positives and 11/71 (15.5%) of individuals with inhibition ELISA sero-positivity reported they had had no previous contact with host animals. Sero-positivity on inhibition ELISA was 11.7% (95% CI 9.2–14.5) and risk was elevated with age (odds ratio (OR) 1.03 per year; 95% CI 1.01–1.04), among milkers (OR 2.19; 95% CI 1.23–3.91), and individuals eating raw meat (OR 4.17; 95% CI 1.18–14.66). Households keeping livestock had a higher probability of having members with evidence of past infection (OR = 3.04, 95% CI = 1.42–6.48) than those that do not keep livestock. Conclusion There is inter-epidemic acquisition of RVFV in Kilombero Valley inhabitants. In the wake of declining malaria incidence, these findings underscore the need for clinicians to consider RVF in the differential diagnosis for febrile illnesses. Several types of direct contact with livestock are important risk factors for past infection with RVFV in this study’s population. However, at least part of RVFV transmission appears to have occurred

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. International external quality assessment of molecular detection of Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Escadafal, Camille; Paweska, Janusz T; Grobbelaar, Antoinette; le Roux, Chantel; Bouloy, Michèle; Patel, Pranav; Teichmann, Anette; Donoso-Mantke, Oliver; Niedrig, Matthias

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a viral zoonosis that primarily affects animals resulting in considerable economic losses due to death and abortions among infected livestock. RVF also affects humans with clinical symptoms ranging from an influenza-like illness to a hemorrhagic fever. Over the past years, RVF virus (RVFV) has caused severe outbreaks in livestock and humans throughout Africa and regions of the world previously regarded as free of the virus. This situation prompts the need to evaluate the diagnostic capacity and performance of laboratories worldwide. Diagnostic methods for RVFV detection include virus isolation, antigen and antibody detection methods, and nucleic acid amplification techniques. Molecular methods such as reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction and other newly developed techniques allow for a rapid and accurate detection of RVFV. This study aims to assess the efficiency and accurateness of RVFV molecular diagnostic methods used by expert laboratories worldwide. Thirty expert laboratories from 16 countries received a panel of 14 samples which included RVFV preparations representing several genetic lineages, a specificity control and negative controls. In this study we present the results of the first international external quality assessment (EQA) for the molecular diagnosis of RVF. Optimal results were reported by 64% of the analyses, 21% of the analyses achieved acceptable results and 15% of the results revealed that there is need for improvement. Evenly good performances were achieved by specific protocols which can therefore be recommended as an accurate molecular protocol for the diagnosis of RVF. Other protocols showed uneven performances revealing the need for improved optimization and standardization of these protocols. PMID:23717706

  10. 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. PMID:26001632

  11. Breaking the chain: Rift Valley fever virus control via livestock vaccination.

    PubMed

    Bird, Brian H; Nichol, Stuart T

    2012-06-01

    Rift Valley fever virus is a mosquito-borne pathogen of livestock and humans that causes widespread and devastating outbreaks of severe and often fatal disease throughout Africa and portions of the Arabian Peninsula. Outbreaks can involve tens to hundreds of thousands of human cases, and millions of livestock. The severity of the disease varies by species, but in sheep and cattle 'abortion storms', high neonatal (∼70%), and adult mortality (20-30%) are features. Human cases are generally self-limiting, but severe complications such as hepatitis, retinitis, delayed-onset encephalitis, or a hemorrhagic syndrome with a case fatality of 10-20% can occur. There are no commercially available human vaccines. Livestock provide key ecological links between the Aedes sp. mosquito vector and humans. High viremias in livestock lead to spillover of RVFV into other anthrophillic vectors (Culex and Anopheles sp. mosquitoes), and, importantly, close contact with infected animal tissues and fluids or aborted fetal materials from these animals is a major risk factor for severe and lethal human infections. Vaccination programs targeting livestock during non-epidemic periods or as an early countermeasure against nascent outbreaks could therefore eliminate one of the main sources of human infection and limit the overall scope of epidemics. To this end, research groups have recently reported novel next generation RVFV vaccines that are safe for use in pregnant and young animals. Preventing RVFV infection of livestock by vaccination is a key element in breaking the chain of human epidemics, and could lead to control of this significant public health threat. PMID:22463980

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Immunogenicity and efficacy of a chimpanzee adenovirus-vectored Rift Valley Fever vaccine in mice

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is a viral zoonosis that historically affects livestock production and human health in sub-Saharan Africa, though epizootics have also occurred in the Arabian Peninsula. Whilst an effective live-attenuated vaccine is available for livestock, there is currently no licensed human RVF vaccine. Replication-deficient chimpanzee adenovirus (ChAd) vectors are an ideal platform for development of a human RVF vaccine, given the low prevalence of neutralizing antibodies against them in the human population, and their excellent safety and immunogenicity profile in human clinical trials of vaccines against a wide range of pathogens. Methods Here, in BALB/c mice, we evaluated the immunogenicity and efficacy of a replication-deficient chimpanzee adenovirus vector, ChAdOx1, encoding the RVF virus envelope glycoproteins, Gn and Gc, which are targets of virus neutralizing antibodies. The ChAdOx1-GnGc vaccine was assessed in comparison to a replication-deficient human adenovirus type 5 vector encoding Gn and Gc (HAdV5-GnGc), a strategy previously shown to confer protective immunity against RVF in mice. Results A single immunization with either of the vaccines conferred protection against RVF virus challenge eight weeks post-immunization. Both vaccines elicited RVF virus neutralizing antibody and a robust CD8+ T cell response. Conclusions Together the results support further development of RVF vaccines based on replication-deficient adenovirus vectors, with ChAdOx1-GnGc being a potential candidate for use in future human clinical trials. PMID:24304565

  15. 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

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

    PubMed Central

    Lebedev, Maxim; McVey, D. Scott; Wilson, William; Morozov, Igor; Young, Alan

    2014-01-01

    Abstract 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 presence of susceptible vectors in nonendemic countries has created increased interest in RVF vaccines. Subunit vaccines composed of specific virus proteins expressed in eukaryotic or prokaryotic expression systems are shown to elicit neutralizing antibodies in susceptible hosts. RVFV structural proteins, amino-terminus glycoprotein (Gn), and carboxyl-terminus glycoprotein (Gc), were expressed using a recombinant baculovirus expression system. The recombinant proteins were reconstituted as a GnGc subunit vaccine formulation and evaluated for immunogenicity in a target species, sheep. Six sheep were each immunized with a primary dose of 50 μg of each vaccine immunogen with the adjuvant montanide ISA25; at day 21, postvaccination, each animal received a second dose of the same vaccine. The vaccine induced a strong antibody response in all animals as determined by indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). A plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT80) showed the primary dose of the vaccine was sufficient to elicit potentially protective virus neutralizing antibody titers ranging from 40 to 160, and the second vaccine dose boosted the titer to more than 1280. Furthermore, all animals tested positive for neutralizing antibodies at day 328 postvaccination. ELISA analysis using the recombinant nucleocapsid protein as a negative marker antigen indicated that the vaccine candidate is DIVA (differentiating infected from vaccinated animals) compatible and represents a promising vaccine platform for RVFV infection in susceptible species. PMID:25325319

  17. 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. PMID:26024956

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Potency of a thermostabilised chimpanzee adenovirus Rift Valley Fever vaccine in cattle

    PubMed Central

    Dulal, Pawan; Wright, Daniel; Ashfield, Rebecca; Hill, Adrian V.S.; Charleston, Bryan; Warimwe, George M.

    2016-01-01

    Development of safe and efficacious vaccines whose potency is unaffected by long-term storage at ambient temperature would obviate major vaccine deployment hurdles and limit wastage associated with breaks in the vaccine cold chain. Here, we evaluated the immunogenicity of a novel chimpanzee adenovirus vectored Rift Valley Fever vaccine (ChAdOx1-GnGc) in cattle, following its thermostabilisation by slow desiccation on glass fiber membranes in the non-reducing sugars trehalose and sucrose. Thermostabilised ChAdOx1-GnGc vaccine stored for 6 months at 25, 37 or 45 °C elicited comparable Rift Valley Fever virus neutralising antibody titres to those elicited by the ‘cold chain’ vaccine (stored at −80 °C throughout) at the same dose, and these were within the range associated with protection against Rift Valley Fever in cattle. The results support the use of sugar-membrane thermostabilised vaccines in target livestock species. PMID:27020712

  2. 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. PMID:24330522

  3. 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

  4. The Albertine Rift, East Africa: Initial rifting, long-term landscape evolution and final surface uplift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, Friederike U.; Glasmacher, Ulrich A.; Ring, Uwe; Grobe, René W.; Starz, Matthias; Mambo, Vikandy S.

    2013-04-01

    The Albertine Rift and associated Rwenzori Mountains form a striking feature at the north-western portion of the East African Rift System. The Rwenzori Mtns are built up by a dissected Precambrian metamorphic basement block that has been uplifted to heights of more than 5 km. The fundamental subject addressed by this study is the temporal and spatial evolution of the Rwenzori Mtns and adjacent Albertine Rift (western Uganda and Eastern Congo) at different time scales. In order to unlock how and at what time the extreme surface uplift occurred, low-temperature thermochronology methods were applied and combined with thermokinematic modelling. By means of apatite fission-track, apatite and zircon (U-Th-Sm)/He dating, combined with 2D (HeFTy) and 3D (Pecube) thermokinematic modelling different phases of landscape evolution could be determined for the Albertine area, where movements of surface uplift can be traced from Palaeozoic to Neogene times. Since the Palaeozoic several cooling events affected the Albertine area and Rwenzori Mtns, as revealed from samples along the rift shoulders and across the mountain range. Results from low-temperature thermochronology and thermokinematic modelling demonstrate that the Rwenzoris were not exhumed as a coherent block but are composed of distinct decoupled blocks with diverging exhumation histories and block movements along inherited faults. Thus, the evolution of the Rwenzoris was not solely triggered by Neogene rifting; moreover, a Mesozoic topographic Albertine high is conceivable. Since the Miocene renewed rock and surface uplift of distinct blocks with forced movements at the western flank of the Rwenzoris occurred. Rock uplift, thereby, outweighed erosion, resulting in the recent high topography of the Rwenzoris and their asymmetric character. Detrital thermochronology data confirm a Neogene surface uplift and indicate transition of erosional forces in Plio-/Pleistocene times. Thermokinematic modelling, applied to samples

  5. 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.

  6. Spatial and Temporal Pattern of Rift Valley Fever Outbreaks in Tanzania; 1930 to 2007

    PubMed Central

    Sindato, Calvin; Karimuribo, Esron D.; Pfeiffer, Dirk U.; Mboera, Leonard E. G.; Kivaria, Fredrick; Dautu, George; Bernard, Bett; Paweska, Janusz T.

    2014-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever (RVF)-like disease was first reported in Tanzania more than eight decades ago and the last large outbreak of the disease occurred in 2006–07. This study investigates the spatial and temporal pattern of RVF outbreaks in Tanzania over the past 80 years in order to guide prevention and control strategies. Materials and Methods A retrospective study was carried out based on disease reporting data from Tanzania at district or village level. The data were sourced from the Ministries responsible for livestock and human health, Tanzania Meteorological Agency and research institutions involved in RVF surveillance and diagnosis. The spatial distribution of outbreaks was mapped using ArcGIS 10. The space-time permutation model was applied to identify clusters of cases, and a multivariable logistic regression model was used to identify risk factors associated with the occurrence of outbreaks in the district. Principal Findings RVF outbreaks were reported between December and June in 1930, 1947, 1957, 1960, 1963, 1968, 1977–79, 1989, 1997–98 and 2006–07 in 39.2% of the districts in Tanzania. There was statistically significant spatio-temporal clustering of outbreaks. RVF occurrence was associated with the eastern Rift Valley ecosystem (OR = 6.14, CI: 1.96, 19.28), total amount of rainfall of >405.4 mm (OR = 12.36, CI: 3.06, 49.88), soil texture (clay [OR = 8.76, CI: 2.52, 30.50], and loam [OR = 8.79, CI: 2.04, 37.82]). Conclusion/Significance RVF outbreaks were found to be distributed heterogeneously and transmission dynamics appeared to vary between areas. The sequence of outbreak waves, continuously cover more parts of the country. Whenever infection has been introduced into an area, it is likely to be involved in future outbreaks. The cases were more likely to be reported from the eastern Rift Valley than from the western Rift Valley ecosystem and from areas with clay and loam rather than sandy soil texture. PMID:24586433

  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. Economic Assessment of Zoonotic Diseases: An Illustrative Study of Rift Valley Fever in the United States.

    PubMed

    Pendell, D L; Lusk, J L; Marsh, T L; Coble, K H; Szmania, S C

    2016-04-01

    This study evaluates the economic consequences of a Rift Valley Fever outbreak, a virus that spreads from livestock to humans, often through mosquitoes. Developing a 'one health' economic framework, economic impacts on agricultural producers and consumers, government costs of response, costs and disruptions to non-agricultural activities in the epidemiologically impacted region, and human health costs (morbidity and mortality) are estimated. We find the agricultural firms bear most of the negative economic impacts, followed by regional non-agricultural firms, human health and government. Further, consumers of agricultural products benefit from small outbreaks due to bans on agricultural exports. PMID:25052324

  9. Countermeasure development for Rift Valley fever: deletion, modification or targeting of major virulence factor NSs

    PubMed Central

    Lihoradova, Olga; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease characterized by a high rate of abortion in ruminants, and febrile illness, hemorrhagic fever, retinitis and encephalitis in humans. RVF is caused by the RVF virus (RVFV), belonging to the genus Phlebovirus of the family Bunyaviridae. RVFV encodes a major virulence factor, NSs, which is dispensable for viral replication, yet required for evasion of host innate immune responses. RVFV NSs inhibits host gene upregulation at the transcriptional level, while promoting viral translation in the cytoplasm. In this article, we summarize the virology and pathology of RVF, and countermeasure development for RVF, with emphasis on NSs function and applications. PMID:24910709

  10. Rift Valley fever virus infection induces activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome

    PubMed Central

    Ermler, Megan E.; Traylor, Zachary; Patel, Krupen; Schattgen, Stefan A.; Vanaja, Sivapriya K.; Fitzgerald, Katherine A.; Hise, Amy G.

    2014-01-01

    Inflammasome activation is gaining recognition as an important mechanism for protection during viral infection. Here, we investigate whether Rift Valley fever virus, a negative-strand RNA virus, can induce inflammasome responses and IL-1β processing in immune cells. We have determined that RVFV induces NLRP3 inflammasome activation in murine dendritic cells, and that this process is dependent upon ASC and caspase-1. Furthermore, absence of the cellular RNA helicase adaptor protein MAVS/IPS-1 significantly reduces extracellular IL-1β during infection. Finally, direct imaging using confocal microscopy shows that the MAVS protein co-localizes with NLRP3 in the cytoplasm of RVFV infected cells. PMID:24418550

  11. 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.

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

    PubMed

    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. 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

  14. Rift Valley fever virus NSs protein functions and the similarity to other bunyavirus NSs proteins.

    PubMed

    Ly, Hoai J; Ikegami, Tetsuro

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever is a mosquito-borne zoonotic disease that affects both ruminants and humans. The nonstructural (NS) protein, which is a major virulence factor for Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), is encoded on the S-segment. Through the cullin 1-Skp1-Fbox E3 ligase complex, the NSs protein promotes the degradation of at least two host proteins, the TFIIH p62 and the PKR proteins. NSs protein bridges the Fbox protein with subsequent substrates, and facilitates the transfer of ubiquitin. The SAP30-YY1 complex also bridges the NSs protein with chromatin DNA, affecting cohesion and segregation of chromatin DNA as well as the activation of interferon-β promoter. The presence of NSs filaments in the nucleus induces DNA damage responses and causes cell-cycle arrest, p53 activation, and apoptosis. Despite the fact that NSs proteins have poor amino acid similarity among bunyaviruses, the strategy utilized to hijack host cells are similar. This review will provide and summarize an update of recent findings pertaining to the biological functions of the NSs protein of RVFV as well as the differences from those of other bunyaviruses. PMID:27368371

  15. 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.

  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 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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...

  4. 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 ...

  5. The geographic distribution of fluoride in surface and groundwater in Ethiopia with an emphasis on the Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Tekle-Haimanot, Redda; Melaku, Zenebe; Kloos, Helmut; Reimann, Clemens; Fantaye, Wondwossen; Zerihun, Legesse; Bjorvatn, Kjell

    2006-08-15

    This paper analyzes the most extensive database on fluoride distribution in Ethiopia. Of the total 1438 water samples tested, 24.2% had fluoride concentrations above the 1.5 mg/l recommended optimum concentration recommended by WHO. Regionally, by far the highest fluoride levels were recorded in the Rift Valley, where 41.2% of all samples exceeded the 1.5 mg/l level. Only 1.0% of the samples from the central and northwestern highlands and 10.0% in the southeastern highlands exceeded 1.5 mg/l. Larger proportions of deep wells (50.0%) and hot springs (90.0%) than shallow wells (27.2%) and cold springs (12.6%) exceeded the 1.5 mg/l level. The highest fluoride concentrations were recorded for Rift Valley lakes Shala (264.0 mg/l) and Abijata (202.4 mg/l) and the lowest in Lake Tana, and rivers, wells and springs in the highlands. The fluoride concentrations of the Awash River, which originates in the highlands and flows through the Rift Valley, increase downstream, giving concern over the current diversion of high-fluoride water from Lake Beseka. Of the various flourosis prevention methods tried in Ethiopia, the treatment of surface water has been shown to be the most feasible and effective for towns and large commercial farms in the Rift Valley, although defluoridation methods should be considered for smaller rural communities. PMID:16360195

  6. Factors Related to the Motivation of Extension Agents in Kenya's Rift Valley Province. Summary of Research 76.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mwangi, John G.; McCaslin, N. L.

    Job satisfaction factors related to motivation of a random sample of 325 agents in Kenya's extension service in the Rift Valley Province were identified. Data were collected using a group-administered, closed-ended, forced-choice questionnaire with 105 job satisfaction, 10 motivational, and 10 personal characteristics items between January and…

  7. A Spatially Explicit Degree-day Model of Rift Valley Fever Transmission Risk in the Continental United States

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A degree-day model was used to assess the risk of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) transmission within five target states in the continental United States: California, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York, and Texas. Each state was evaluated on a 10-km grid using the average of historical daily temperature extreme...

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-transmitted pathogen that primarily affects livestock, but can also cause mild to fatal disease in humans. Currently, there is no approved vaccine for use in the United States if it were introduced. Domestic goats, sheep and cattle are susceptible hosts ...

  9. 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...

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Serological tests for detecting Rift Valley fever viral antibodies in sheep from the Nile Delta.

    PubMed Central

    Scott, R M; Feinsod, F M; Allam, I H; Ksiazek, T G; Peters, C J; Botros, B A; Darwish, M A

    1986-01-01

    To determine the accuracy of serological methods in detecting Rift Valley fever (RVF) viral antibodies, we examined serum samples obtained from 418 sheep in the Nile Delta by using five tests. The plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT) was considered the standard serological method against which the four other tests were compared. Twenty-four serum samples had RVF viral antibodies detected by PRNT. Hemagglutination inhibition and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay antibodies to RVF virus were also present in the same 24 serum samples. Indirect immunofluorescence was less sensitive in comparison with PRNT, and complement fixation was the least sensitive. These results extend observations made with laboratory animals to a large field-collected group of Egyptian sheep. PMID:3533977

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Distribution of Upper Pliocene brines in the northern Jordan Rift Valley, Israel and Jordan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siebert, Christian; Möller, Peter; Rosenthal, Eliyahu; Guttman, Joseph; Yellin-Dror, Annat; Inbar, Nimrod; Magri, Fabien

    2014-05-01

    In the triangle of Lake Tiberias (LT), Yarmouk Gorge and Lower Jordan Valley (Fig. 1), fresh groundwaters are frequently deteriorated by variable admixture of ascending subsurface Upper-Pliocene brines. Element ratios and water isotopes reveal, that common source brine is present and is modified by water rock interaction and dilution with freshwater. This common source brine is inferred from the composition of the known Ha'on well brine being characterized by molar ratios of Na/Cl=0.53, 1000Br/Cl=5.5 and Ca/Mg=0.39 (Möller et al., 2011). The low Ca/Mg, a ratio also found for Newe Ur, is unique in an environment in which ratios >1 dominate because of omnipresent dolomitization of abundant limestones. Interaction with abundant intrusive basaltic bodies would add sodium and hence increase the low Na/Cl ratio to >1. Uptake of halite increases Na/Cl but decreases Br/Cl ratios. These ratios resemble seawater after 37-fold enrichment in Li molality by evaporation (McCaffrey et al. 1987). Although being diluted by freshwater the Ha'on well brine proves the presence of an evaporated seawater mother brine residing at unknown depth. The derivatives of inferred Ha'on mother brine are present around Lake Tiberias, in the lower Yarmouk Valley and in the northern Rift Valley at least as far southwards as Newe Ur. Areas of structural weakness, where the major fault systems occur, are the main distribution areas for these brines. The study provides an example whereby hydrochemical analyses are applied as key tool to better understand deep fluid transport processes at basin-scale, which are supported by numerical modeling of groundwater flow. Möller P., Siebert C., Geyer S., Inbar N., Rosenthal E., Flexer A., Zilberbrand M. (2011): Relationship of brines in the Kinnarot Basin, Jordan-Dead Sea Rift Valley. Geofluids 12(2): 166-181. McCaffrey M.A., Lazar B., Holland H.D. (1987): The evaporation path of seawater and the coprecipitation of Br- and K+ with halite. J. Sediment. Petrol

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

    PubMed

    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. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Detection of Rift Valley Fever Virus Interepidemic Activity in Some Hotspot Areas of Kenya by Sentinel Animal Surveillance, 2009–2012

    PubMed Central

    Lichoti, Jacqueline Kasiiti; Oriko, Abuu A.; Okutoyi, Leonard Ateya; Wauna, James Ogaa; Tchouassi, David P.; Tigoi, Caroline C.; Kemp, Steve; Sang, Rosemary; Mbabu, Rees Murithi

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus causes an important zoonotic disease of humans and small ruminants in Eastern Africa and is spread primarily by a mosquito vector. In this region, it occurs as epizootics that typically occur at 5–15-year intervals associated with unusual rainfall events. It has hitherto been known that the virus is maintained between outbreaks in dormant eggs of the mosquito vector and this has formed the basis of understanding of the epidemiology and control strategies of the disease. We show here that seroconversion and sporadic acute disease do occur during the interepidemic periods (IEPs) in the absence of reported cases in livestock or humans. The finding indicates that previously undetected low-level virus transmission during the IEPs does occur and that epizootics may also be due to periodic expansion of mosquito vectors in the presence of both circulating virus and naïve animals. PMID:25202470

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    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

  8. 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

  9. Exposure of sheep to mosquito bites: possible consequences for the transmission risk of Rift Valley Fever in Senegal.

    PubMed

    Chevalier, V; Mondet, B; Diaite, A; Lancelot, R; Fall, A G; Ponçon, N

    2004-09-01

    Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is a growing health problem in West Africa. In northern Senegal, the candidate vectors of this arbovirosis are Aedes (Aedimorphus) vexans Meigen and Culex (Culex) poicilipes Theobald (Diptera: Culicidae). Domestic ruminants are the reservoirs of the virus. A study was undertaken during the 2002 rainy season to assess spatial and temporal variations in exposure to mosquito bites in sheep herds, and to evaluate the possible consequences on the risk of RVF transmission to sheep. Mosquitoes were collected with sheep-baited traps. The number of Ae. vexans females (the predominant species during the 2002 rainy season) trapped per trap-night was the dependent variable in statistical analyses. The trapping periods were divided into six series of two to five consecutive days, from July to November 2002. Three temporary ponds were selected according to their ecological features: depth, bank slope, size and vegetation cover. Traps were laid on the pond bank and in the nearest available compound, close to the sheep night pen. Data were analysed using mixed-effects Poisson models. The explanatory variables were the trapping period, the pond, and the capture site. The exposure to mosquito bites varied according to the pond type, suggesting that the risk of transmission was spatially heterogeneous. However, there was no obvious trend in transmission risk due to the effect of the distance from the compound to the pond. The period with the highest exposure was in October, i.e. when transhumant herds left the Ferlo to relocate to their dry-season settlement. It is thus hypothesized that transhumance, the seasonal movements of herds, plays a significant role in the dissemination of RVF virus in the region. PMID:15347392

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Permo-Triassic structural evolution of the Argana Valley, impact of the Atlantic rifting in the High Atlas, Morocco

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baudon, Catherine; Redfern, Jonathan; Van Den Driessche, Jean

    2012-04-01

    This paper provides an alternative model to explain the structural evolution of the Argana Valley, located in the Western High Atlas of Morocco. Most Triassic basins in the High Atlas have been described as isolated rift basins distributed along an ENE-WSW oriented trough and developed as a series of half-grabens. They are characterised by two main sets of syn-sedimentary faults striking ENE-WSW and NNE-SSW, generally attributed to the Atlantic and Tethys rifting. The Permo-Triassic sediments of the Argana Valley are offset by similar trending faults and, as such, they have been interpreted as typical infill sediments of narrow rift-basins in Morocco, controlled by syn-sedimentary faulting due to the Atlantic rifting. Our study investigates the structural evolution of the area using newly acquired field analysis of the main faults and unconformities. This data, together with published information, has been used to construct a series of structural cross-sections across the valley. Three main unconformities have been recognised. The first unconformity separates Permian sediments from the underlying deformed Palaeozoic rocks. The second is an angular unconformity between Late Permian sediments and the overlying Triassic sequence, attributed to relaxation and orogenic collapse that occurred after the Hercynian Orogeny. The geometry of Late Permian units suggests that the large E-W to ENE-WSW faults occurred after deposition of the Late Permian and before the Triassic, and were associated with a major phase of tectonic activity and associated erosion. The third angular unconformity occurs between the latest Triassic sediments and the overlying basalts or Jurassic sedimentary sequence. Significantly, this study suggests that the ENE-WSW faults and most of NNE faults were not active during sedimentation of the Triassic. We conclude that the Triassic sediments of the Argana Valley were not deposited in a half graben, but within a slowly subsiding domain, such as a sag

  13. Development of a diagnostic one-tube RT-PCR for the detection of Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Espach, A; Romito, M; Nel, L H; Viljoen, G J

    2002-09-01

    Diagnosis of Rift Valley fever (RVF) is based on serology and virus isolation. The disadvantages of the former include poor sensitivity, high cost, risks associated with using infectious virus as antigen, the lengthy duration of ELISA as well as cross-reactivity with other Phleboviruses. We developed, optimised and evaluated a one-tube reverse-transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) for the detection of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) in ruminants. The PCR primers for this assay were designed to anneal to a region within the M segment of the virus genome, encoding glycoproteins G1 and G2. A PCR amplicon of 363 bp was obtained. The sensitivity of the assay was determined to be 0.25 TCID50. This test should allow for the early and rapid detection of RVFV in both serum and whole blood. In addition, it could facilitate the quantification of antigen for the manufacture of current vaccines. PMID:12356173

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. An observational study of the summer Mediterranean Sea breeze front penetration into the complex topography of the Jordan Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naor, R.; Potchter, O.; Shafir, H.; Alpert, P.

    2015-09-01

    The Mediterranean summer sea breeze front (SBF) climatic features of penetration into the complex topography of the Jordan Rift Valley (JRV) were investigated. It was shown that the SBF penetration into the JRV occurs in a well-defined chronological order from north to south. One exception to this general rule is the breeze penetration of Sdom, which occurs after it has penetrated the Arava which is located further south, probably due to the micro-climatic effect of the Dead Sea. It was also noted that the breeze increases the local specific humidity as it reaches the JRV in spite of significant temperature increases. The temperature reaches its daily peak 2 to 3 h later in the southern valley compared to the northern valley and is suggested to be due to the later SBF penetration and the valley structure. The pre-SBF line features in the JRV are described.

  17. 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

  18. Postepidemic Analysis of Rift Valley Fever Virus Transmission in Northeastern Kenya: A Village Cohort Study

    PubMed Central

    LaBeaud, A. Desirée; Muiruri, Samuel; Sutherland, Laura J.; Dahir, Saidi; Gildengorin, Ginny; Morrill, John; Muchiri, Eric M.; Peters, Clarence J.; King, Charles H.

    2011-01-01

    Background In endemic areas, Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a significant threat to both human and animal health. Goals of this study were to measure human anti-RVFV seroprevalence in a high-risk area following the 2006–2007 Kenyan Rift Valley Fever (RVF) epidemic, to identify risk factors for interval seroconversion, and to monitor individuals previously exposed to RVFV in order to document the persistence of their anti-RVFV antibodies. Methodology/Findings We conducted a village cohort study in Ijara District, Northeastern Province, Kenya. One hundred two individuals tested for RVFV exposure before the 2006–2007 RVF outbreak were restudied to determine interval anti-RVFV seroconversion and persistence of humoral immunity since 2006. Ninety-two additional subjects were enrolled from randomly selected households to help identify risk factors for current seropositivity. Overall, 44/194 or 23% (CI95%:17%–29%) of local residents were RVFV seropositive. 1/85 at-risk individuals restudied in the follow-up cohort had seroconverted since early 2006. 27/92 (29%, CI95%: 20%–39%) of newly tested individuals were seropositive. All 13 individuals with positive titers (by plaque reduction neutralization testing (PRNT80)) in 2006 remained positive in 2009. After adjustment in multivariable logistic models, age, village, and drinking raw milk were significantly associated with RVFV seropositivity. Visual impairment (defined as ≤20/80) was much more likely in the RVFV-seropositive group (P<0.0001). Conclusions Our results highlight significant variability in RVFV exposure in two neighboring villages having very similar climate, terrain, and insect density. Among those with previous exposure, RVFV titers remained at >1∶40 for more than 3 years. In concordance with previous studies, residents of the more rural village were more likely to be seropositive and RVFV seropositivity was associated with poor visual acuity. Raw milk consumption was strongly associated with

  19. 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

  20. The role of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 in Rift Valley fever virus infection.

    PubMed

    Pinkham, Chelsea; An, Soyeon; Lundberg, Lindsay; Bansal, Neha; Benedict, Ashwini; Narayanan, Aarthi; Kehn-Hall, Kylene

    2016-09-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic disease that can cause severe illness in humans and livestock, triggering spontaneous abortion in almost 100% of pregnant ruminants. In this study, we demonstrate that signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) is phosphorylated on its conserved tyrosine residue (Y705) following RVFV infection. This phosphorylation was dependent on a major virulence factor, the viral nonstructural protein NSs. Loss of STAT3 had little effect on viral replication, but rather resulted in cells being more susceptible to RVFV-induced cell death. Phosphorylated STAT3 translocated to the nucleus, coinciding with inhibition of fos, jun, and nr4a2 gene expression, and the presence of STAT3 and NSs at the nr4a2 promoter. NSs was found predominantly in the cytoplasm of STAT3 null cells, indicating that STAT3 influences NSs nuclear localization. Collectively, these data demonstrate that STAT3 functions in a pro-survival capacity through modulation of NSs localization. PMID:27318793

  1. 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.

  2. A Fusion-Inhibiting Peptide against Rift Valley Fever Virus Inhibits Multiple, Diverse Viruses

    PubMed Central

    Koehler, Jeffrey W.; Smith, Jeffrey M.; Ripoll, Daniel R.; Spik, Kristin W.; Taylor, Shannon L.; Badger, Catherine V.; Grant, Rebecca J.; Ogg, Monica M.; Wallqvist, Anders; Guttieri, Mary C.; Garry, Robert F.; Schmaljohn, Connie S.

    2013-01-01

    For enveloped viruses, fusion of the viral envelope with a cellular membrane is critical for a productive infection to occur. This fusion process is mediated by at least three classes of fusion proteins (Class I, II, and III) based on the protein sequence and structure. For Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), the glycoprotein Gc (Class II fusion protein) mediates this fusion event following entry into the endocytic pathway, allowing the viral genome access to the cell cytoplasm. Here, we show that peptides analogous to the RVFV Gc stem region inhibited RVFV infectivity in cell culture by inhibiting the fusion process. Further, we show that infectivity can be inhibited for diverse, unrelated RNA viruses that have Class I (Ebola virus), Class II (Andes virus), or Class III (vesicular stomatitis virus) fusion proteins using this single peptide. Our findings are consistent with an inhibition mechanism similar to that proposed for stem peptide fusion inhibitors of dengue virus in which the RVFV inhibitory peptide first binds to both the virion and cell membranes, allowing it to traffic with the virus into the endocytic pathway. Upon acidification and rearrangement of Gc, the peptide is then able to specifically bind to Gc and prevent fusion of the viral and endocytic membranes, thus inhibiting viral infection. These results could provide novel insights into conserved features among the three classes of viral fusion proteins and offer direction for the future development of broadly active fusion inhibitors. PMID:24069485

  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. HIV type 1 gag genetic diversity among antenatal clinic attendees in North Rift Valley, Kenya.

    PubMed

    Nyagaka, Benuel; Kiptoo, Michael K; Lihana, Raphael W; Khamadi, Samoel A; Makokha, Ernest P; Kinyua, Joyceline G; Mwangi, Joseph; Osman, Saida; Lagat, Nancy J; Muriuki, Joseph; Okoth, Vincent; Gicheru, Michael; Ng'ang'a, Zipporah; Songok, Elijah M

    2012-05-01

    HIV genetic recombination and high mutation rate increase diversity allowing it to escape from host immune response or antiretroviral drugs. This diversity has enabled specific viral subtypes to be predominant in specific regions. To determine HIV-1 subtypes among seropositive antenatal clinic attendees in Kenya's North Rift Valley, a cross-sectional study was carried out on 116 HIV-1-positive blood samples. Proviral DNA was extracted from peripheral blood mononuclear cells by DNAzol lysis and ethanol precipitation. Polymerase chain reactions using specific primers for HIV-1 gag and population sequencing on resulting amplicons were carried out. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that 81 (70%) were subtype A1, 13 (11%) subtype D, 8 (7%) subtype C, 3 (3%) subtype A2, 1 (1%) subtype G, and 10 showed possible recombinants: 5 (4%) subtype A1D, 4 (3%) subtype A1C, and 1 (1%) subtype A2C. These data support the need to establish circulating subtypes for better evaluation of effective HIV diagnostic and treatment options in Kenya. PMID:21827277

  5. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

  7. Enhanced Detection of Rift Valley Fever Virus using Molecular Assays on Whole Blood Samples

    PubMed Central

    Grolla, Allen; Mehedi, Masfique; Lindsay, Robbin; Bosio, Catharine; Duse, Adriano; Feldmann, Heinz

    2012-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an emerging arthropod-borne zoonoses of global agricultural and public health importance. In December 2006, an RVF outbreak was recognized in Kenya which led to the deployment of international response laboratory teams to the area. Objectives A field laboratory was operated in Malindi, Kenya to provide safe sample handling and molecular testing for RVF virus (RVFV) as well as selected other pathogens for differential diagnosis. Study Design Safe sample handling was carried out using a negative pressure flexible film isolator (glovebox) and commercial reagents to inactivate clinical specimens and purify nucleic acid. Whole blood was routinely used for diagnostic testing although paired plasma samples were also tested in select cases. Subsequently, human macrophages were tested in vitro for their susceptibility to RVFV. Results The field laboratory received samples from 33 individuals and a definite laboratory diagnosis was provided in 16 of these cases. Using molecular diagnostic techniques, RVFV was more consistently detected in whole blood than in plasma samples most likely due to association of RVFV with blood cells. Subsequent in vitro studies identified macrophages as a target cell for RVFV replication. Conclusions RVFV appears to replicate in blood cells such as macrophages. Thus, the sensitivity of molecular diagnostic testing is improved if whole blood is used as the clinical specimen rather than plasma or serum. PMID:22632901

  8. 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. PMID:26581831

  9. 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

  10. Elevated Antibodies against Rift Valley Fever Virus among Humans with Exposure to Ruminants in Saudi Arabia

    PubMed Central

    Memish, Ziad A.; Masri, Malak A.; Anderson, Benjamin D.; Heil, Gary L.; Merrill, Hunter R.; Khan, Salah U.; Alsahly, Ahmad; Gray, Gregory C.

    2015-01-01

    In 2000, an outbreak of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) occurred in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). Since then there have been sparse efforts to monitor for RVFV reemergence. During 2012, we enrolled 300 individuals with ruminant exposure and 50 age-group matched non-exposed controls in southwestern KSA, in a cross-sectional epidemiological study of RVFV. Sera from the participants were screened with an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for anti-RVFV IgG antibodies of which 39 (11.1%) were positive. Sixteen (41.0%) of those 39 were also positive by a plaque reduction neutralization assay (PRNT). The PRNT-positive subjects were further studied with an IgM ELISA and one was positive. No RVFV was detected in the 350 sera using real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. Contact with cattle (odds ratio [OR] = 3.16, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.01, 9.90) and a history of chronic medical illness (OR = 6.41, 95% CI 1.75, 23.44) were associated with greater odds of RVFV seropositivity by PRNT. The IgM-positive participant was 36 years of age, and reported multiple risk factors for ruminant contact. Although these findings simply may be vestiges of the 2000 epidemic, KSA's frequent visits from pilgrims and importations of live animals from RVFV-endemic areas suggest that more comprehensive surveillance for imported RVFV virus in ruminants, mosquitoes, and travelers is imperative. PMID:25646253

  11. 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. PMID:24180117

  12. Massive sulfides in a sedimented rift valley, northern Juan de Fuca Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Earl E.; Goodfellow, Wayne D.; Bornhold, Brian D.; Adshead, John; Blaise, Bertrand; Villinger, Heiner; Le Cheminant, Gina M.

    1987-03-01

    A number of mounds each several hundred meters across and up to sixty meters high have been observed with SeaMARC II acoustic imagery and Seabeam bathymetry in the sediment-filled axial valley at the northern end of the Juan de Fuca Ridge. The mounds are located a few kilometers west of the eastern valley-bounding normal fault scarp where the local sediment fill is approximately 300 m thick. All of the mounds are believed to be of hydrothermal origin, and one is associated with anomalously high heat flow in excess of 1 W m -2. A piston core collected from that mound comprises coarse clastic sulfide units interbedded with sulfidic muds. Hydrothermal minerals present in the 2.3 m section include pyrrhotite, pyrite, marcasite, sphalerite, chalcopyrite, iss (intermediate solid solution in the Cu sbnd Fe sbnd Zn sbnd S system), chalcopyrrhotite, galena, talc, barite, and amorphous silica. Mineral fabrics of the clasts indicate that the material was precipitated at or near the sea floor by mixing of hot hydrothermal fluids with cold seawater. Low concentrations of Zn, Cu, Cd, and Ag relative to those found in unsedimented ridge hydrothermal deposits, and the presence of pyrrhotite as an early phase mineral indicates that the vent fluids have been modified by reaction with sediments beneath the mound. Rapid sedimentation in a rift valley is clearly conducive to the formation of large hydrothermal mineral deposits like those believed to be present within and beneath these mounds. The relatively impermeable sediment cover insulates the crust, inhibits groundwater recharge, promotes long-lived discharge at a restricted number of sites, provides a substrate for the efficient subsurface precipitation of minerals, and through continued sedimentation, protects surficial deposits from the corrosive effects of seawater. No reliable estimate of the bulk composition of the mounds can be made with existing data, but their size is comparable to major hydrothermal mineral deposits

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  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. 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.

  20. Streptomyces alkaliphilus sp. nov., isolated from sediments of Lake Elmenteita in the Kenyan Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Akhwale, Juliah Khayeli; Göker, Markus; Rohde, Manfred; Spröer, Cathrin; Schumann, Peter; Klenk, Hans-Peter; Boga, Hamadi Iddi

    2015-05-01

    A novel strain, designated No. 7(T), was isolated from a sediment sample collected from the alkaline, saline Lake Elmenteita located in the Kenyan Rift Valley. The optimal growth for the strain was found to be at temperature 30-35 °C, at pH 8.0-12.0 in the presence of 7.0-10.0 % (w/v) NaCl. The strain was observed to form a light green beige abundant aerial mycelium on Horikoshi 1 agar and to have morphological and chemotaxonomic characteristics typical of members of the genus Streptomyces. The peptidoglycan was found to contain LL-diaminopimelic acid as the diamino acid, with no diagnostic sugars identified. The predominant menaquinone was identified as MK-9(H6). The main polar lipids were identified as diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylinositol and an unknown phospholipid. Cellular fatty acids were found to consist of saturated branched-chain acids with iso-C(15:0), anteiso-C(15:0), iso-C(16:0) and anteiso-C(17:0) acids predominating. The type strain had a genomic DNA G+C content of 72.8 mol% and formed a distinct phyletic line within the genus Streptomyces. Based on the chemotaxonomic results, 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis and the low DNA-DNA hybridization value with the type strain of Streptomyces calidiresistens, it is proposed that strain No. 7(T) (= DSM 42118 = CECT 8549) represents a novel species, Streptomyces alkaliphilus. The INSDC accession number for the 16S rRNA gene sequence of strain No. 7(T) is KF976730. PMID:25761860

  1. Perceived risk factors and risk pathways of Rift Valley fever in cattle in Ijara district, Kenya.

    PubMed

    Owange, Nelson O; Ogara, William O; Kasiiti, Jacqueline; Gathura, Peter B; Okuthe, Sam; Sang, Rosemary; Affognon, Hippolyte; Onyango-Ouma, Washington; Landmann, Tobias T O; Mbabu, Murithi

    2014-01-01

    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 major economic losses. The main constraint for the control and prevention of RVF is inadequate knowledge of the risk factors for its occurrence and maintenance. This study was aimed at understanding the perceived risk factors and risk pathways of RVF in cattle in Ijara to enable the development of improved community-based disease surveillance, prediction, control and prevention. A cross-sectional study was carried out from September 2012 to June 2013. Thirty-one key informant interviews were conducted with relevant stakeholders to determine the local pastoralists' understanding of risk factors and risk pathways of RVF in cattle in Ijara district. All the key informants perceived the presence of high numbers of mosquitoes and large numbers of cattle to be the most important risk factors contributing to the occurrence of RVF in cattle in Ijara. Key informants classified high rainfall as the most important (12/31) to an important (19/31) risk factor. The main risk pathways were infected mosquitoes that bite cattle whilst grazing and at watering points as well as close contact between domestic animals and wildlife. The likelihood of contamination of the environment as a result of poor handling of carcasses and aborted foetuses during RVF outbreaks was not considered an important pathway. There is therefore a need to conduct regular participatory community awareness sessions on handling of animal carcasses in terms of preparedness, prevention and control of any possible RVF epizootics. Additionally, monitoring of environmental conditions to detect enhanced rainfall and flooding should be prioritised for preparedness. PMID:25686079

  2. Rift Valley Fever in Humans and Animals in Mayotte, an Endemic Situation?

    PubMed Central

    Jego, Maël; Desprès, Philippe; Collet, Louis; Zumbo, Betty; Tillard, Emmanuel; Girard, Sébastien; Filleul, Laurent

    2013-01-01

    Retrospective studies and surveillance on humans and animals revealed that Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV) has been circulating on Mayotte for at least several years. A study was conducted in 2011 to estimate the seroprevalence of RVF in humans and in animals and to identify associated risk factors. Using a multistage cluster sampling method, 1420 individuals were enrolled in the human study, including 337 children aged 5 to 14 years. For the animal study, 198 seronegative ruminants from 33 randomly selected sentinel ruminant herds were followed up for more than one year. In both studies, information on environment and risk factors was collected through a standardized questionnaire. The overall weighted seroprevalence of RVFV antibodies in the general population aged ≥5 years was 3.5% (95% CI 2.6–4.8). The overall seroprevalence of RVFV antibodies in the ruminant population was 25.3% (95% CI 19.8–32.2). Age (≥15), gender (men), place of birth on the Comoros, living in Mayotte since less than 5 years, low educational level, farming and living close to a water source were significantly associated with RVFV seropositivity in humans. Major risk factors for RFV infection in animals were the proximity of the farm to a water point, previous two-month rainfall and absence of abortions disposal. Although resulting in few clinical cases in humans and in animals, RVFV has been circulating actively on the island of Mayotte, in a context of regular import of the virus from nearby countries through illegal animal movements, the presence of susceptible animals and a favorable environment for mosquito vectors to maintain virus transmission locally. Humans and animals share the same ways of RVFV transmission, with mosquitoes playing an important role. The studies emphasize the need for a one health approach in which humans and animals within their ecosystems are included. PMID:24098637

  3. 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

  4. Rift Valley Fever Virus Strain MP-12 Enters Mammalian Host Cells via Caveola-Mediated Endocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Harmon, Brooke; Schudel, Benjamin R.; Maar, Dianna; Kozina, Carol; Ikegami, Tetsuro; Tseng, Chien-Te Kent

    2012-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a zoonotic pathogen capable of causing serious morbidity and mortality in both humans and livestock. The lack of efficient countermeasure strategies, the potential for dispersion into new regions, and the pathogenesis in humans and livestock make RVFV a serious public health concern. The receptors, cellular factors, and entry pathways used by RVFV and other members of the family Bunyaviridae remain largely uncharacterized. Here we provide evidence that RVFV strain MP-12 uses dynamin-dependent caveola-mediated endocytosis for cell entry. Caveolae are lipid raft domains composed of caveolin (the main structural component), cholesterol, and sphingolipids. Caveola-mediated endocytosis is responsible for the uptake of a wide variety of host ligands, as well as bacteria, bacterial toxins, and a number of viruses. To determine the cellular entry mechanism of RVFV, we used small-molecule inhibitors, RNA interference (RNAi), and dominant negative (DN) protein expression to inhibit the major mammalian cell endocytic pathways. Inhibitors and RNAi specific for macropinocytosis and clathrin-mediated endocytosis had no effect on RVFV infection. In contrast, inhibitors of caveola-mediated endocytosis, and RNAi targeted to caveolin-1 and dynamin, drastically reduced RVFV infection in multiple cell lines. Expression of DN caveolin-1 also reduced RVFV infection significantly, while expression of DN EPS15, a protein required for the assembly of clathrin-coated pits, and DN PAK-1, an obligate mediator of macropinocytosis, had no significant impact on RVFV infection. These results together suggest that the primary mechanism of RVFV MP-12 uptake is dynamin-dependent, caveolin-1-mediated endocytosis. PMID:22993156

  5. Wetland sedimentation and associated diatoms in the Pleistocene Olorgesailie Basin, southern Kenya Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Owen, R. Bernhart; Renaut, Robin W.; Scott, Jennifer J.; Potts, Richard; Behrensmeyer, Anna K.

    2009-12-01

    The Olorgesailie Basin in the southern Kenya Rift Valley contains a variety of lacustrine, wetland and terrestrial facies that were laid down during the last 1.2 million years. This study integrates diatom, ichnofossil, and rhizolith (silica and carbonate) evidence in order to identify and characterize shallow wetland deposition at the top (Member 14; ca. 493 ka) of the Olorgesailie Formation. A key feature of these deposits is the presence of facies with aquatic indicators (diatoms) that are overprinted by ichnofossils and rhizoliths that suggest drier conditions. Diatom floras include several fresh water Aulacoseira spp. and saline indicators such as Thalassiosirarudolfi, T.faurii, Cyclotellameneghiniana and Anomoeoneissphaerophora. The main indicators of shallow fresh to mildly saline waters include Epithemia argus, Rhopalodiagibberula, Encyonema muelleri, and Synedra spp. Three main suites of ichnofossils indicate varying water table depths during their formation. These consist of 1) horizontal tunnels that suggest saturated substrates; 2) vertical burrows formed in substrates with relatively lower water tables; and 3) termite, hymenopteran, and beetle ichnofossils that indicate dry substrates. Member 14 of the Olorgesailie Formation also contains carbonate and siliceous rhizoliths, which occur both together and separately. Four possible models are suggested to explain the silica and carbonate rhizolith formation: 1) a complex of spring-fed marshes and dry areas; 2) ephemeral wetlands and floodplains; 3) wetlands with abundant organic decay, and 4) initial carbonate rhizoliths that were replaced by silica. Preservation of cellular structures and the reworking and incorporation of rhizoliths in overlying younger strata suggest that they formed early during diagenesis.

  6. 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

  7. Land-use and land-cover dynamics in the central rift valley of Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Garedew, Efrem; Sandewall, Mats; Söderberg, Ulf; Campbell, Bruce M

    2009-10-01

    Understanding the complexity of land-use and land-cover (LULC) changes and their driving forces and impacts on human and environmental security is important for the planning of natural resource management and associated decision making. This study combines and compares participatory field point sampling (pfps) and remote sensing to explore local LULC dynamics. The study was conducted in two peasant associations located in the central Ethiopian Rift Valley, which is a dry-land mixed farming area exposed to rapid deforestation. From 1973-2006, the area of cropland doubled at the expense of woodland and wooded-grassland in both of the study sites. Major deforestation and forest degradation took place from 1973-1986; woodland cover declined from 40% to 9% in one of the study sites, while the other lost all of its original 54% woodland cover. Our study concludes that assessing LULC dynamics using a combination of remote sensing and pfps is a valuable approach. The two methods revealed similar LULC trends, while the pfps provided additional details on how farmers view the changes. This study documents dramatic trends in LULC over time, associated with rapid population growth, recurrent drought, rainfall variability and declining crop productivity. The alarming nature of these trends is reflected in a decrease in the livelihood security of local communities and in environmental degradation. Given these dry-land conditions, there are few opportunities to improve livelihoods and environmental security without external support. If negative changes are to be halted, action must be taken, including building asset bases, instituting family planning services, and creating opportunities outside these marginal environments. PMID:19688359

  8. 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

  9. Spatial variability of mountain stream dynamics along the Ethiopian Rift Valley escarpment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asfaha, Tesfaalem-Ghebreyohannes; Frankl, Amaury; Zenebe, Amanuel; Haile, Mitiku; Nyssen, Jan

    2014-05-01

    Changes in hydrogeomorphic characteristics of mountain streams are generally deemed to be controlled mainly by land use/cover changes and rainfall variability. This study investigates the spatial variability of peak discharge in relation to land cover, rainfall and topographic variables in eleven catchments of the Ethiopian Rift Valley escarpment (average slope gradient = 48% (± 13%). Rapid deforestation of the escarpment in the second half of the 20th century resulted in the occurrence of strong flash floods, transporting large amounts of discharge and sediment to the lower graben bottom. Due to integrated reforestation interventions as of the 1980s, many of these catchments do show improvement in vegetation cover at various degrees. Daily rainfall was measured using seven non-recording rain gauges, while peak stage discharges were measured after floods using crest stage gauges installed at eleven stream reaches. Peak discharges were calculated using the Manning's equation. Daily area-weighted rainfall was computed for each catchment using the Thiessen Polygon method. To estimate the vegetation cover of each catchment, the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index was calculated from Landsat TM imagery (mean = 0.14 ± 0.05). In the rainy season of 2012, there was a positive correlation between daily rainfall and peak discharge in each of the monitored catchments. In a multiple linear regression analysis (R² = 0.83; P<0.01), average daily peak discharge in all rivers was positively related with rainfall depth and catchment size and negatively with vegetation cover (as represented by average NDVI values). Average slope gradient of the catchments and Gravelius's compactness index did not show a statistically significant relation with peak discharge. This study shows that though the average vegetation cover of the catchments is still relatively low, differences in vegetation cover, together with rainfall variability plays a determining role in the amount of peak

  10. Mantle Anisotropy, Collisional Rifts and the Magmatic Evolution of Southern Africa: Old (Mantle) Fabric Never Dies.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silver, P. G.; Fouch, M.; Gao, S.; Schmitz, M.

    2003-12-01

    The observed seismic anisotropy of the southern African mantle, made possible by data from the Southern African Seismic Experiment, provides important constraints on modes of mantle deformation beneath this ancient continent. We find that the mantle anisotropy is dominated by deformational events in Archean times occurring within the lithosphere, and can thus be used to assess the mantle's role in the tectonic evolution of this region. The pattern of mantle anisotropy derived from shear wave splitting observations reveals two noteworthy characteristics. First, there is a spatially continuous arc of mantle anisotropy extending from the western Kaapvaal and Zimbabwe Cratons to the northeastern Kaapvaal. All along the arc, the splitting fast polarization direction, φ , is subparallel to the trend of the arc. Given the crust/mantle chronology associated with these regions, the anisotropy likely represents deformation that occurred at ca. 2.9 to 2.7 Ga during collisional accretion of both the western Kimberley and northern Pietersburg blocks onto the ca. 3.2 Ga eastern shield of the Kaapvaal, with accretion on the northern ramparts of the Kaapvaal ultimately culminating in the Neo-Archean Limpopo orogen. Second, there is mantle anisotropy closely associated with the Great Dyke with values of φ parallel to the Dyke, just north of and distinct from this arc of anisotropy. We present evidence that the mantle fabric that generates seismic anisotropy also constitutes preexisting structure in the mantle that is subsequently reactivated, much like the more commonly cited reactivation of crustal structures. In particular, we argue that the Neo-Archean collision imparted a mechanical anisotropy to the mantle that controlled the subsequent magmatic history of cratonic southern Africa (old fabric never dies!). Study of mechanical anisotropy of olivine aggregates suggests that failure is most likely parallel to the olivine b-plane, which for transcurrent deformation is a vertical

  11. 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

  12. Post-rift unroofing of the NW Africa passive continental margin during the Central Atlantic opening

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghorbal, B.; Bertotti, G.; Andriessen, P. A. M.

    2009-04-01

    Many passive margins considered as being stable for long times, show however late uplift and exhumation at regional scale as assessed by low temperature geochronometry. A large amount of Lower Cretaceous terrigeneous sediments laid down in most of basins along the NW Africa continental margins indicate that a major episode of erosion occurred during early post-rift period in the Central Atlantic. AFT and (U-Th)/He dating performed, along a roughly >500 km N-S transect, on pre-Mesozoic basement rocks from Western Meseta to the Anti-Atlas (Morocco, NW Africa) document a fully unexpected widespread unroofing during the Middle-Late Jurassic to early Late Cretaceous, with AFT and (U-Th)/He ages ranging respectively between 120-170Ma and 115-165Ma. A well documented age cluster of 140±20Ma measured for the Moroccan Meseta, Atlas domains and Anti-Atlas belt designates those domains as potentially being the source areas of the detritic sediments considering the proximity of the depositional basins. Absence of major fault separating the Anti-Atlas from the rest of the Western African Craton during the Mesozoic suggests the unroofing region to extend further in Morocco, as far south as the Reguibat (Mauritania) or even New Guinea, documented by our investigation, and perhaps even further when confirmed by additional AFT and AHe data.

  13. 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

  14. Evidence for hot Mississippi Valley-type brines in the Reelfoot Rift complex, south-central United States, in Late Pennsylvanian-Early Permian

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leach, D.L.; Apodaca, L.E.; Repetski, J.E.; Powell, J.W.; Rowan, E.L.

    1997-01-01

    Petrographic and fluid inclusion studies of sparry dolomite cement from Upper Cambrian to Lower Ordovician rocks and conodont thermal-alteration indices provide evidence that hot mississippi valley-type brines were once present in the Reelfoot Rift complex. The cathodoluminescent microstratigraphy of sparry dolomite cement in the Reelfoot Rift resembles that of sparry dolomite cement associated with widespread mississippi valley-type deposition in the Ozark region. If correlative cathodoluminescent zones in the sparry dolomite from the Ozark and Reelfoot Rift regions indicate broadly contemporaneous dolomite deposition, then the results show that the Ozark MVT-type hydrothermal system extended into the Reelfoot region and onto the western flank of the Nashville Dome. Independent evidence supports migration of MVT-type brines into the Ozark region from the Reelfoot Rift complex in late Paleozoic time.

  15. 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

  16. Rift Valley fever virus (family Bunyaviridae, genus Phlebovirus). Isolations from Diptera collected during an inter-epizootic period in Kenya.

    PubMed Central

    Linthicum, K. J.; Davies, F. G.; Kairo, A.; Bailey, C. L.

    1985-01-01

    A total of 134 876 Diptera collected in Kenya during a 3-year period were tested in 3383 pools for Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus. Nineteen pools of unengorged mosquitoes were found positive for RVF. All isolations were made from specimens collected at or near the naturally or artificially flooded grassland depressions that serve as the developmental sites for the immature stages of many mosquito species. The isolation of virus from adult male and female A. lineatopennis which had been reared from field-collected larvae and pupae suggests that transovarial transmission of the virus occurs in this species. PMID:2862206

  17. Reverse genetics technology for Rift Valley fever virus: current and future applications for the development of therapeutics and vaccines.

    PubMed

    Bouloy, Michele; Flick, Ramon

    2009-11-01

    The advent of reverse genetics technology has revolutionized the study of RNA viruses, making it possible to manipulate their genomes and evaluate the effects of these changes on their biology and pathogenesis. The fundamental insights gleaned from reverse genetics-based studies over the last several years provide a new momentum for the development of designed therapies for the control and prevention of these viral pathogens. This review summarizes the successes and stumbling blocks in the development of reverse genetics technologies for Rift Valley fever virus and their application to the further dissection of its pathogenesis and the design of new therapeutics and safe and effective vaccines. PMID:19682499

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Factors Associated with Severe Human Rift Valley Fever in Sangailu, Garissa County, Kenya

    PubMed Central

    LaBeaud, A. Desirée; Pfeil, Sarah; Muiruri, Samuel; Dahir, Saidi; Sutherland, Laura J.; Traylor, Zachary; Gildengorin, Ginny; Muchiri, Eric M.; Morrill, John; Peters, C. J.; Hise, Amy G.; Kazura, James W; King, Charles H.

    2015-01-01

    Background Mosquito-borne Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes acute, often severe, disease in livestock and humans. To determine the exposure factors and range of symptoms associated with human RVF, we performed a population-based cross-sectional survey in six villages across a 40 km transect in northeastern Kenya. Methodology/Principal Findings: A systematic survey of the total populations of six Northeastern Kenyan villages was performed. Among 1082 residents tested via anti-RVFV IgG ELISA, seroprevalence was 15% (CI95%, 13–17%). Prevalence did not vary significantly among villages. Subject age was a significant factor, with 31% (154/498) of adults seropositive vs. only 2% of children ≤15 years (12/583). Seroprevalence was higher among men (18%) than women (13%). Factors associated with seropositivity included a history of animal exposure, non-focal fever symptoms, symptoms related to meningoencephalitis, and eye symptoms. Using cluster analysis in RVFV positive participants, a more severe symptom phenotype was empirically defined as having somatic symptoms of acute fever plus eye symptoms, and possibly one or more meningoencephalitic or hemorrhagic symptoms. Associated with this more severe disease phenotype were older age, village, recent illness, and loss of a family member during the last outbreak. In multivariate analysis, sheltering livestock (aOR = 3.5 CI95% 0.93–13.61, P = 0.065), disposing of livestock abortus (aOR = 4.11, CI95% 0.63–26.79, P = 0.14), and village location (P = 0.009) were independently associated with the severe disease phenotype. Conclusions/Significance Our results demonstrate that a significant proportion of the population in northeastern Kenya has been infected with RVFV. Village and certain animal husbandry activities were associated with more severe disease. Older age, male gender, herder occupation, killing and butchering livestock, and poor visual acuity were useful markers for increased RVFV infection. Formal vision

  1. Sheep Skin Odor Improves Trap Captures of Mosquito Vectors of Rift Valley Fever

    PubMed Central

    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) CO2 (LC), (b) animal volatiles (LF), and (c) CO2 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

  2. Immunogenicity of a Recombinant Rift Valley Fever MP-12-NSm Deletion Vaccine Candidate in Calves

    PubMed Central

    Morrill, John C.; Laughlin, Richard C.; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Wu, Jing; Pugh, Roberta; Kanani, Pooja; Adams, L. Garry; Makino, Shinji; Peters, C. J.

    2013-01-01

    The safety and immunogenicity of an authentic recombinant (ar) of the live, attenuated MP-12 Rift Valley fever (RVF) vaccine virus with a large deletion of the NSm gene in the pre-Gn region of the M RNA segment (arMP-12ΔNSm21/384) was tested in 4 – 6 month old Bos taurus calves. Phase I of this study evaluated the neutralizing antibody response, measured by 80% plaque reduction neutralization (PRNT80), and clinical response of calves to doses of 1×101 through 1×107 plaque forming units (PFU) administered subcutaneously (s.c.). Phase II evaluated the clinical and neutralizing antibody response of calves inoculated s.c. or intramuscularly (i.m.) with 1×103, 1×104 or 1×105 PFU of arMP-12ΔNSm21/384. No significant adverse clinical events were observed in the animals in these studies. Of all specimens tested, only one vaccine viral isolate was recovered and that virus retained the introduced deletion. In the Phase I study, there was no statistically significant difference in the PRNT80 response between the dosage groups though the difference in IgG response between the 1×101 PFU group and the 1×105 PFU group was statistically significant (p <0.05). The PRNT80 response of the respective dosage groups corresponded to dose of vaccine with the 1×101 PFU dose group showing the least response. The Phase II study also showed no statistically significant difference in PRNT80 response between the dosage groups though the difference in RVFV-specific IgG values was significantly increased (P<0.001) in animals inoculated i.m. with 1×104 or 1×105 PFU versus those inoculated s. c. with 1×103 or 1×105 PFU. Although the study groups were small, these data suggest that 1×104 or 1×105 PFU of arMP-12ΔNSm21/384 administered i.m. to calves will consistently stimulate a presumably protective PRNT80 response for at least 91 days post inoculation. Further studies of arMP-12ΔNSm21/384 are warranted to explore its suitability as an efficacious livestock vaccine. PMID:23994375

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Two diamictites, two cap carbonates, two δ13C excursions, two rifts: The Neoproterozoic Kingston Peak Formation, Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prave, A. R.

    1999-04-01

    Stratigraphic mapping of the Neoproterozoic glaciogenic Kingston Peak Formation (Death Valley, California) provides evidence for two temporally discrete extensional deformation episodes. These episodes are bracketed by the Sourdough Limestone and Noonday Dolomite, the facies characteristics and δ13C data (ranging between 2.15 and -2.56‰ and -1.88 and -4.86‰, respectively) of which make them equivalent to Sturtian and Varangian age cap carbonates, respectively. This constrains the two extensional episodes along the southwestern margin of Laurentia to ca. 700 Ma and ca. 600 Ma. These observations and data show that the field evidence for mid-Neoproterozoic breakup and the predictions from tectonic subsidence curves for a latest Neoproterozoic breakup are both correct. Thus, Neoproterozoic plate reconstructions must account for two discrete rift episodes separated by 100 m.y. or more. Confining rifting to within the Kingston Peak Formation thereby places the younger Proterozoic rocks of the southwestern Great Basin in the rift to drift tectonic phase.

  6. 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.

  7. Prevalence of contagious caprine pleuro-pneumonia in pastoral flocks of goats in the Rift Valley region of Kenya.

    PubMed

    Kipronoh, Alexander Kipruto; Ombui, Jackson Nyarongi; Kiara, Henry Kimathi; Binepal, Yatinder Singh; Gitonga, Eric; Wesonga, Hezron Okwako

    2016-01-01

    A cross-sectional survey was conducted between the months of March 2014 and March 2015 to determine the prevalence of contagious caprine pleuropneumonia in goat populations in pastoral flocks in three sub-counties of the Rift Valley region. A total of 432 serum samples were collected from goats from 54 flocks and tested for the presence of antibodies against mycoplasma capricolum subspecies capripneumoniae (mccp) using monoclonal antibody-based competitive enzyme-linked immuno-sorbent assay. Sero-prevalence recorded for Turkana West was 63.9%, Kajiado Central was 48.6%, while Pokot East was 29.2% which was statistically significant (χ2 = 34.997; P = 0.000) in the study sites. The results of this study confirmed that CCPP is widespread and endemic in the pastoral production systems studied in the Rift Valley region. The results confirmed that regions sharing international boundaries are at a higher risk of CCPP hence the need for a unified cross-border approach to disease control measures in the border areas. PMID:26516086

  8. 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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazor, E.; Levitte, D.; Truesdell, A. H.; Healy, J.; Nissenbaum, A.

    1980-01-01

    Mixing models and evaluation of SiO 2 contents of warm-water manifestations in the Jordan—Dead Sea Rift Valley indicate that these waters are fed by aquifers with estimated temperatures of up to 68°C. These calculations and Na/K ratios, concentrations of Na, K and Ca, concentrations of atmospheric Ne, Ar, Kr and Xe; and concentrations of the stable hydrogen and oxygen isotopes all indicate below-boiling temperatures. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Strain accommodation by slow slip and dyking in a youthful continental rift, East Africa.

    PubMed

    Calais, Eric; d'Oreye, Nicolas; Albaric, Julie; Deschamps, Anne; Delvaux, Damien; Déverchère, Jacques; Ebinger, Cynthia; Ferdinand, Richard W; Kervyn, François; Macheyeki, Athanas S; Oyen, Anneleen; Perrot, Julie; Saria, Elifuraha; Smets, Benoît; Stamps, D Sarah; Wauthier, Christelle

    2008-12-11

    Continental rifts begin and develop through repeated episodes of faulting and magmatism, but strain partitioning between faulting and magmatism during discrete rifting episodes remains poorly documented. In highly evolved rifts, tensile stresses from far-field plate motions accumulate over decades before being released during relatively short time intervals by faulting and magmatic intrusions. These rifting crises are rarely observed in thick lithosphere during the initial stages of rifting. Here we show that most of the strain during the July-August 2007 seismic crisis in the weakly extended Natron rift, Tanzania, was released aseismically. Deformation was achieved by slow slip on a normal fault that promoted subsequent dyke intrusion by stress unclamping. This event provides compelling evidence for strain accommodation by magma intrusion, in addition to slip along normal faults, during the initial stages of continental rifting and before significant crustal thinning. PMID:19079058

  12. Common host-derived chemicals increase catches of disease-transmitting mosquitoes and can improve early warning systems for Rift Valley fever virus.

    PubMed

    Tchouassi, David P; Sang, Rosemary; Sole, Catherine L; Bastos, Armanda D S; Teal, Peter E A; Borgemeister, Christian; Torto, Baldwyn

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne zoonosis, is a major public health and veterinary problem in sub-Saharan Africa. Surveillance to monitor mosquito populations during the inter-epidemic period (IEP) and viral activity in these vectors is critical to informing public health decisions for early warning and control of the disease. Using a combination of field bioassays, electrophysiological and chemical analyses we demonstrated that skin-derived aldehydes (heptanal, octanal, nonanal, decanal) common to RVF virus (RVFV) hosts including sheep, cow, donkey, goat and human serve as potent attractants for RVFV mosquito vectors. Furthermore, a blend formulated from the four aldehydes and combined with CO(2)-baited CDC trap without a light bulb doubled to tripled trap captures compared to control traps baited with CO(2) alone. Our results reveal that (a) because of the commonality of the host chemical signature required for attraction, the host-vector interaction appears to favor the mosquito vector allowing it to find and opportunistically feed on a wide range of mammalian hosts of the disease, and (b) the sensitivity, specificity and superiority of this trapping system offers the potential for its wider use in surveillance programs for RVFV mosquito vectors especially during the IEP. PMID:23326620

  13. Common Host-Derived Chemicals Increase Catches of Disease-Transmitting Mosquitoes and Can Improve Early Warning Systems for Rift Valley Fever Virus

    PubMed Central

    Tchouassi, David P.; Sang, Rosemary; Sole, Catherine L.; Bastos, Armanda D. S.; Teal, Peter E. A.; Borgemeister, Christian; Torto, Baldwyn

    2013-01-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF), a mosquito-borne zoonosis, is a major public health and veterinary problem in sub-Saharan Africa. Surveillance to monitor mosquito populations during the inter-epidemic period (IEP) and viral activity in these vectors is critical to informing public health decisions for early warning and control of the disease. Using a combination of field bioassays, electrophysiological and chemical analyses we demonstrated that skin-derived aldehydes (heptanal, octanal, nonanal, decanal) common to RVF virus (RVFV) hosts including sheep, cow, donkey, goat and human serve as potent attractants for RVFV mosquito vectors. Furthermore, a blend formulated from the four aldehydes and combined with CO2-baited CDC trap without a light bulb doubled to tripled trap captures compared to control traps baited with CO2 alone. Our results reveal that (a) because of the commonality of the host chemical signature required for attraction, the host-vector interaction appears to favor the mosquito vector allowing it to find and opportunistically feed on a wide range of mammalian hosts of the disease, and (b) the sensitivity, specificity and superiority of this trapping system offers the potential for its wider use in surveillance programs for RVFV mosquito vectors especially during the IEP. PMID:23326620

  14. The Rift Valley fever accessory proteins NSm and P78/NSm-GN are distinct determinants of virus propagation in vertebrate and invertebrate hosts

    PubMed Central

    Kreher, Felix; Tamietti, Carole; Gommet, Céline; Guillemot, Laurent; Ermonval, Myriam; Failloux, Anna-Bella; Panthier, Jean-Jacques; Bouloy, Michèle; Flamand, Marie

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is an enzootic virus circulating in Africa that is transmitted to its vertebrate host by a mosquito vector and causes severe clinical manifestations in humans and ruminants. RVFV has a tripartite genome of negative or ambisense polarity. The M segment contains five in-frame AUG codons that are alternatively used for the synthesis of two major structural glycoproteins, GN and GC, and at least two accessory proteins, NSm, a 14-kDa cytosolic protein, and P78/NSm-GN, a 78-kDa glycoprotein. To determine the relative contribution of P78 and NSm to RVFV infectivity, AUG codons were knocked out to generate mutant viruses expressing various sets of the M-encoded proteins. We found that, in the absence of the second AUG codon used to express NSm, a 13-kDa protein corresponding to an N-terminally truncated form of NSm, named NSm′, was synthesized from AUG 3. None of the individual accessory proteins had any significant impact on RVFV virulence in mice. However, a mutant virus lacking both NSm and NSm′ was strongly attenuated in mice and grew to reduced titers in murine macrophages, a major target cell type of RVFV. In contrast, P78 was not associated with reduced viral virulence in mice, yet it appeared as a major determinant of virus dissemination in mosquitoes. This study demonstrates how related accessory proteins differentially contribute to RVFV propagation in mammalian and arthropod hosts. PMID:26038497

  15. Planning for Rift Valley fever virus: use of geographical information systems to estimate the human health threat of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus)-related transmission.

    PubMed

    Kakani, Sravan; LaBeaud, A Desirée; King, Charles H

    2010-11-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus is a mosquito-borne phlebovirus of the Bunyaviridae family that causes frequent outbreaks of severe animal and human disease in sub-Saharan Africa, Egypt and the Arabian Peninsula. Based on its many known competent vectors, its potential for transmission via aerosolization, and its progressive spread from East Africa to neighbouring regions, RVF is considered a high-priority, emerging health threat for humans, livestock and wildlife in all parts of the world. Introduction of West Nile virus to North America has shown the potential for "exotic" viral pathogens to become embedded in local ecological systems. While RVF is known to infect and amplify within domestic livestock, such as taurine cattle, sheep and goats, if RVF virus is accidentally or intentionally introduced into North America, an important unknown factor will be the role of local wildlife in the maintenance or propagation of virus transmission. We examined the potential impact of RVF transmission via white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) in a typical north-eastern United States urban-suburban landscape, where livestock are rare but where these potentially susceptible, ungulate wildlife are highly abundant. Model results, based on overlap of mosquito, human and projected deer densities, indicate that a significant proportion (497/1186 km(2), i.e. 42%) of the urban and peri-urban landscape could be affected by RVF transmission during the late summer months. Deer population losses, either by intervention for herd reduction or by RVF-related mortality, would substantially reduce these likely transmission zones to 53.1 km(2), i.e. by 89%. PMID:21080319

  16. RIFT VALLEY FEVER: PREPARING FOR POTENTIAL NEW MOSQUITO-BORNE DISEASES IN THE U.S. WITH A VECTOR SURVEILLANCE SYSTEM

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In this symposium we have discussed four diseases that are emerging threats in the U.S., and it may be concluded that in our best defense knowing the vector is as important as knowing the disease. Rift Valley fever, Dengue, and JEE are but a few of the many emerging diseases that we can prepare for...

  17. PREPARING FOR RIFT VALLEY FEVER IN THE U.S.: IMPLEMENTING GIS AND REMOTE SENSING TO UNDERSTAND POPULATION DYNAMICS OF MOSQUITO VECTORS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Much work has been done to understand the pathways along which Rift Valley fever (RVF) could be introduced to the U.S., to study the vector competence and vectorial capacity of various mosquito species that could transmit RVF, and to develop safe vaccines and reliable test kits. However, we do not ...

  18. 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 ...

  19. 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

  20. Rift Valley fever virus incorporates the 78kDa glycoprotein into virions matured in C6/36 2 mosquito cells

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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 codi...

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. An assessment of the regional and national socio-economic impacts of the 2007 Rift Valley fever outbreak in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Rich, Karl M; Wanyoike, Francis

    2010-08-01

    Although Rift Valley fever (RVF) has significant impacts on human health and livestock production, it can also induce significant (and often overlooked) economic losses among various stakeholders in the marketing chain. This work assesses and quantifies the multi-dimensional socio-economic impacts of the 2007 RVF outbreak in Kenya based on a rapid assessment of livestock value chains in the northeast part of the country and a national macroeconomic analysis. Although study results show negative impacts among producers in terms of food insecurity and reductions in income, we also found significant losses among other downstream actors in the value chain, including livestock traders, slaughterhouses, casual laborers, and butchers, as well as other, non-agricultural sectors. The study highlights the need for greater sensitivity and analyses that address the multitude of economic losses resulting from an animal disease to better inform policy and decision making during animal health emergencies. PMID:20682906

  5. Antigenic and genetic relationships among Rift Valley fever virus and other selected members of the genus Phlebovirus (Bunyaviridae).

    PubMed

    Xu, Fangling; Liu, Dongying; Nunes, Marcio R T; DA Rosa, Amelia P A Travassos; Tesh, Robert B; Xiao, Shu-Yuan

    2007-06-01

    Preliminary serologic data indicated that two South American phleboviruses (Belterra virus [BELTV] and Icoaraci virus [ICOV]) may be related to Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), an African phlebovirus that causes severe hepatitis and hemorrhagic fever in humans. To further define this relationship and to investigate the underlying genetic basis, comparative serologic and genetic sequence analyses were performed with RVFV and five other New World phleboviruses (ICOV, BELTV, Salobo virus, Joa virus, and Frijoles virus). Serologically, a one-way cross reaction was confirmed between antibodies against these New World viruses and RVFV antigen. In contrast, phylogenetic analysis demonstrated clear separation of these viruses from RVFV, into distinct phylogenies, based on sequences of the small, medium, and large RNA segments. PMID:17556635

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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. PMID:12826384

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Predicting the Mosquito Species and Vertebrate Species Involved in the Theoretical Transmission of Rift Valley Fever Virus in the United States

    PubMed Central

    Golnar, Andrew J.; Turell, Michael J.; LaBeaud, A. Desiree; Kading, Rebekah C.; Hamer, Gabriel L.

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne virus in the family Bunyaviridiae that has spread throughout continental Africa to Madagascar and the Arabian Peninsula. The establishment of RVFV in North America would have serious consequences for human and animal health in addition to a significant economic impact on the livestock industry. Published and unpublished data on RVFV vector competence, vertebrate host competence, and mosquito feeding patterns from the United States were combined to quantitatively implicate mosquito vectors and vertebrate hosts that may be important to RVFV transmission in the United States. A viremia-vector competence relationship based on published mosquito transmission studies was used to calculate a vertebrate host competence index which was then combined with mosquito blood feeding patterns to approximate the vector and vertebrate amplification fraction, defined as the relative contribution of the mosquito or vertebrate host to pathogen transmission. Results implicate several Aedes spp. mosquitoes and vertebrates in the order Artiodactyla as important hosts for RVFV transmission in the U.S. Moreover, this study identifies critical gaps in knowledge which would be necessary to complete a comprehensive analysis identifying the different contributions of mosquitoes and vertebrates to potential RVFV transmission in the U.S. Future research should focus on (1) the dose-dependent relationship between viremic exposure and the subsequent infectiousness of key mosquito species, (2) evaluation of vertebrate host competence for RVFV among North American mammal species, with particular emphasis on the order Artiodactyla, and (3) identification of areas with a high risk for RVFV introduction so data on local vector and host populations can help generate geographically appropriate amplification fraction estimates. PMID:25211133

  15. Genetic Evidence for Rift Valley Fever Outbreaks in Madagascar Resulting from Virus Introductions from the East African Mainland rather than Enzootic Maintenance▿†‡

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, Serena A.; Reynes, Jean-Marc; Khristova, Marina L.; Andriamandimby, Soa Fy; Rollin, Pierre E.; Nichol, Stuart T.

    2011-01-01

    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. PMID:21507967

  16. 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

  17. 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 Central

    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

  18. Rift Valley Fever Virus Encephalitis Is Associated with an Ineffective Systemic Immune Response and Activated T Cell Infiltration into the CNS in an Immunocompetent Mouse Model

    PubMed Central

    Dodd, Kimberly A.; McElroy, Anita K.; Jones, Tara L.; Zaki, Sherif R.; Nichol, Stuart T.; Spiropoulou, Christina F.

    2014-01-01

    Background Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) causes outbreaks of severe disease in livestock and humans throughout Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. In people, RVFV generally causes a self-limiting febrile illness but in a subset of individuals, it progresses to more serious disease. One manifestation is a delayed-onset encephalitis that can be fatal or leave the afflicted with long-term neurologic sequelae. In order to design targeted interventions, the basic pathogenesis of RVFV encephalitis must be better understood. Methodology/Principal Findings To characterize the host immune responses and viral kinetics associated with fatal and nonfatal infections, mice were infected with an attenuated RVFV lacking NSs (ΔNSs) that causes lethal disease only when administered intranasally (IN). Following IN infection, C57BL/6 mice developed severe neurologic disease and succumbed 7–9 days post-infection. In contrast, inoculation of ΔNSs virus subcutaneously in the footpad (FP) resulted in a subclinical infection characterized by a robust immune response with rapid antibody production and strong T cell responses. IN-inoculated mice had delayed antibody responses and failed to clear virus from the periphery. Severe neurological signs and obtundation characterized end stage-disease in IN-inoculated mice, and within the CNS, the development of peak virus RNA loads coincided with strong proinflammatory responses and infiltration of activated T cells. Interestingly, depletion of T cells did not significantly alter survival, suggesting that neurologic disease is not a by-product of an aberrant immune response. Conclusions/Significance Comparison of fatal (IN-inoculated) and nonfatal (FP-inoculated) ΔNSs RVFV infections in the mouse model highlighted the role of the host immune response in controlling viral replication and therefore determining clinical outcome. There was no evidence to suggest that neurologic disease is immune-mediated in RVFV infection. These results provide

  19. 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

  20. Multiple Virus Lineages Sharing Recent Common Ancestry Were Associated with a Large Rift Valley Fever Outbreak among Livestock in Kenya during 2006-2007▿ †

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2008-01-01

    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

  1. 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

  2. Presence of Viral RNA and Proteins in Exosomes from Cellular Clones Resistant to Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection

    PubMed Central

    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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. Pore water chemistry of an alkaline rift valley lake: Lake Turkana, Kenya

    SciTech Connect

    Cerling, T.E.; Johnson, T.C.; Halfman, J.D.; Lister, G.

    1985-01-01

    Lake Turkana is the largest closed basin lake in the African rift system. It has evolved through the past 5000 years to become a moderately alkaline lake. Previous mass balance argument suggest that sulfate is removed from the lake by sulfate reduction in the sediments, and that the lake is accumulating in chloride, sodium, and alkalinity. Studies of pore water from 12 meter cores collected in November 1984 show that sulfate is reduced in the sediment column with a net production of alkalinity. Some sodium is lost from the lake and diffuses into the sediment to maintain charge balance. At several meters depth, organic matter is destroyed by methanogenic bacteria, as shown by the high delta /sup 13/C values for dissolved inorganic carbon. Magnesium and calcium molar ratios change with depth; chloride, sodium, and alkalinity also change with depth.

  7. Trace element and Sr-Nd-Pb isotope geochemistry of Rungwe Volcanic Province, Tanzania: Implications for a superplume source for East Africa Rift magmatism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castillo, Paterno; Hilton, David; Halldórsson, Sæmundur

    2014-09-01

    The recently discovered high, plume-like 3He/4He ratios at Rungwe Volcanic Province (RVP) in southern Tanzania, similar to those at the Main Ethiopian Rift in Ethiopia, strongly suggest that magmatism associated with continental rifting along the entire East African Rift System (EARS) has a deep mantle contribution (Hilton et al., 2011). New trace element and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic data for high 3He/4He lavas and tephras from RVP can be explained by binary mixing relationships involving Early Proterozoic (+/- Archaean) lithospheric mantle, present beneath the southern EARS, and a volatile-rich carbonatitic plume with a limited range of compositions and best represented by recent Nyiragongo lavas from the Virunga Volcanic Province also in the Western Rift. Other lavas from the Western Rift and from the southern Kenya Rift can also be explained through mixing between the same endmember components. In contrast, lavas from the northern Kenya and Main Ethiopian rifts can be explained through variable mixing between the same mantle plume material and the Middle to Late Proterozoic lithospheric mantle, present beneath the northern EARS. Thus, we propose that the bulk of EARS magmatism is sourced from mixing among three endmember sources: Early Proterozoic (+/- Archaean) lithospheric mantle, Middle to Late Proterozoic lithospheric mantle and a volatile-rich carbonatitic plume with a limited range of compositions. We propose further that the African Superplume, a large, seismically anomalous feature originating in the lower mantle beneath southern Africa, influences magmatism throughout eastern Africa with magmatism at RVP and Main Ethiopian Rift representing two different heads of a single mantle plume source. This is consistent with a single mantle plume origin of the coupled He-Ne isotopic signatures of mantle-derived xenoliths and/or lavas from all segments of the EARS (Halldorsson et al., 2014).

  8. 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. PMID:22841800

  9. Applying the One Health principles: a trans-sectoral coordination framework for preventing and responding to Rift Valley fever outbreaks.

    PubMed

    de La Rocque, S; Formenty, P

    2014-08-01

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a good example of a disease for which a One Health approach can significantly improve the management of outbreaks: RVF is a vector- borne zoonotic disease, its dynamics differ between eco-epidemiological patterns and are modulated by eco-climatic factors. Therefore, collaboration between sectors, disciplines and role players, as well as an understanding of the local epidemiology of the disease, are key prerequisites for proper risk assessment and outbreak control. These principles drove the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to develop an inter-sectoral strategic approach, with specific actions recommended for each of the four periods in the development of the outbreak (forecasting and preparedness, alert, epidemic control, post-epidemic). Through several outbreak response missions between 2006 and 2012 in various countries, an implementation framework was developed by WHO, FAO and the national authorities of affected countries and used to build national response action plans. The framework proposes a structured attribution of duty and responsibilities to committees made up of representatives of the various institutional and operational role players, and with clear mandates and terms of reference (TOR). Such an approach, ensuring real-time sharing of information, coherence in the various aspects of the response, and ownership of the strategy, has proven its efficiency. It could also be used, with appropriate adjustments in the TOR, for other zoonotic diseases. PMID:25707183

  10. 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

  11. Rift Valley Fever Virus Structural and Nonstructural Proteins: Recombinant Protein Expression and Immunoreactivity Against Antisera from Sheep

    PubMed Central

    Faburay, Bonto; Wilson, William; McVey, D. Scott; Drolet, Barbara S.; Weingartl, Hana; Madden, Daniel; Young, Alan; Ma, Wenjun

    2013-01-01

    Abstract The Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) encodes the structural proteins nucleoprotein (N), aminoterminal glycoprotein (Gn), carboxyterminal glycoprotein (Gc), and L protein, 78-kD, and the nonstructural proteins NSm and NSs. Using the baculovirus system, we expressed the full-length coding sequence of N, NSs, NSm, Gc, and the ectodomain of the coding sequence of the Gn glycoprotein derived from the virulent strain of RVFV ZH548. Western blot analysis using anti-His antibodies and monoclonal antibodies against Gn and N confirmed expression of the recombinant proteins, and in vitro biochemical analysis showed that the two glycoproteins, Gn and Gc, were expressed in glycosylated form. Immunoreactivity profiles of the recombinant proteins in western blot and in indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay against a panel of antisera obtained from vaccinated or wild type (RVFV)-challenged sheep confirmed the results obtained with anti-His antibodies and demonstrated the suitability of the baculo-expressed antigens for diagnostic assays. In addition, these recombinant proteins could be valuable for the development of diagnostic methods that differentiate infected from vaccinated animals (DIVA). PMID:23962238

  12. Ecological Niche Modeling and Land Cover Risk Areas for Rift Valley Fever Vector, Culex tritaeniorhynchus Giles in Jazan, Saudi Arabia

    PubMed Central

    Sallam, Mohamed F.; Al Ahmed, Azzam M.; Abdel-Dayem, Mahmoud S.; Abdullah, Mohamed A. R.

    2013-01-01

    Background The mosquito, Culex tritaeniorhynchus Giles is a prevalent and confirmed Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV) vector. This vector, in association with Aedimorphus arabiensis (Patton), was responsible for causing the outbreak of 2000 in Jazan Province, Saudi Arabia. Methodology/Principal Findings Larval occurrence records and a total of 19 bioclimatic and three topographic layers imported from Worldclim Database were used to predict the larval suitable breeding habitats for this vector in Jazan Province using ArcGIS ver.10 and MaxEnt modeling program. Also, a supervised land cover classification from SPOT5 imagery was developed to assess the land cover distribution within the suitable predicted habitats. Eleven bioclimatic and slope attributes were found to be the significant predictors for this larval suitable breeding habitat. Precipitation and temperature were strong predictors of mosquito distribution. Among six land cover classes, the linear regression model (LM) indicated wet muddy substrate is significantly associated with high-very high suitable predicted habitats (R2 = 73.7%, P<0.05). Also, LM indicated that total dissolved salts (TDS) was a significant contributor (R2 = 23.9%, P<0.01) in determining mosquito larval abundance. Conclusion/Significance This model is a first step in understanding the spatial distribution of Cx. tritaeniorhynchus and consequently the risk of RVFV in Saudi Arabia and to assist in planning effective mosquito surveillance and control programs by public health personnel and researchers. PMID:23762424

  13. Choice of inbred rat strain impacts lethality and disease course after respiratory infection with Rift Valley Fever Virus

    PubMed Central

    Bales, Jacquelyn M.; Powell, Diana S.; Bethel, Laura M.; Reed, Douglas S.; Hartman, Amy L.

    2012-01-01

    Humans infected with Rift Valley Fever Virus (RVFV) generally recover after a febrile illness; however, a proportion of patients progress to a more severe clinical outcome such as hemorrhagic fever or meningoencephalitis. RVFV is naturally transmitted to livestock and humans by mosquito bites, but it is also infectious through inhalational exposure, making it a potential bioterror weapon. To better understand the disease caused by inhalation of RVFV, Wistar-Furth, ACI, or Lewis rats were exposed to experimental aerosols containing virulent RVFV. Wistar-Furth rats developed a rapidly progressing lethal hepatic disease after inhalational exposure; ACI rats were 100-fold less susceptible and developed fatal encephalitis after infection. Lewis rats, which do not succumb to parenteral inoculation with RVFV, developed fatal encephalitis after aerosol infection. RVFV was found in the liver, lung, spleen, heart, kidney and brain of Wistar Furth rats that succumbed after aerosol exposure. In contrast, RVFV was found only in the brains of ACI or Lewis rats that succumbed after aerosol exposure. Lewis rats that survived s.c. infection were not protected against subsequent re-challenge by aerosol exposure to the homologous virus. This is the first side-by-side comparison of the lethality and pathogenesis of RVFV in three rat strains after aerosol exposure and the first step toward developing a rodent model suitable for use under the FDA Animal Rule to test potential vaccines and therapeutics for aerosol exposure to RVFV. PMID:22919694

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Differences in aerosolization of Rift Valley fever virus resulting from choice of inhalation exposure chamber: implications for animal challenge studies

    PubMed Central

    Bethel, Laura M.; Powell, Diana S.; Caroline, Amy L.; Hartman, Amy L.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The aerosol characteristics of Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) were evaluated to achieve reproducible infection of experimental animals with aerosolized RVFV suitable for animal efficacy studies. Spray factor (SF), the ratio between the concentrations of the aerosolized agent to the agent in the aerosol generator, is used to compare performance differences between aerosol exposures. SF indicates the efficiency of the aerosolization process; a higher SF means a lower nebulizer concentration is needed to achieve a desired inhaled dose. Relative humidity levels as well as the duration of the exposure and choice of exposure chamber all impacted RVFV SF. Differences were also noted between actual and predicted minute volumes for different species of nonhuman primates. While NHP from Old World species (Macaca fascicularis, M. mulatta, Chlorocebus aethiops) generally had a lower actual minute volume than predicted, the actual minute volume for marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) was higher than predicted (150% for marmosets compared with an average of 35% for all other species examined). All of these factors (relative humidity, chamber, duration, and minute volume) impact the ability to reliably and reproducibly deliver a specific dose of aerosolized RVFV. The implications of these findings for future pivotal efficacy studies are discussed. PMID:24532259

  17. The risk of Rift Valley fever virus introduction and establishment in the United States and European Union

    PubMed Central

    Rolin, Alicia I; Berrang-Ford, Lea; Kulkarni, Manisha A

    2013-01-01

    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. PMID:26038446

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Facies distributions within contrasting structural components of a rift lake: Lake Tanganyika, Africa

    SciTech Connect

    Soreghan, M.J.; Cohen, A.S. )

    1991-03-01

    Lake Tanganyika is the most widely cited modern analog for interpreting ancient rift lakes; thus, understanding controls on its facies distribution is critical for refining stratigraphic models for rifts. Four recurrent margin types occur along the alternating half-graben structure of the lake: rift axes, platforms, escarpments, and accommodation zones. Data from study sites in the northern part of the lake suggest that predictable facies differences exist between these structural margin types. The rift axis site comprises a low-gradient, clastic (wave/current)-dominated deltaic system, with strong facies asymmetry and minor carbonate accumulations on raised benches. The platform margin site comprises a series of structurally controlled benches over which long, continuous facies tracts occur. Carbonate sands, muds, and shell gravel dominate; clastics are limited to moderate-sized silty deltas and long, narrow shoreface sands. The escarpment margin site is a steep-gradient system along which small ({lt}1 km{sup 2}) fan deltas alternate with cemented talus. The accommodation zone margin sites are also dominated by rugged structural relief, generally small fan deltas, and semicontinuous shoreface sand belts ({gt}5 km) onshore and poorly sorted silts offshore. TOC from fine-grained samples reflects the contrast in margin types. TOC values for the platform and rift axis range from 0.4 - 2.1 wt. % (avg. 1.3%), whereas accommodation zone and escarpment margin values range from 0.5-5.5% (avg. 3.0%). Acid insoluble sulfur shows a similar trend. Although all data are significantly correlated with depth, the relative area of the lake margin above and below the oxicline is directly controlled by the structural style of the lake margin.

  2. 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.

  3. Shallow, high-resolution velocity structure across the Dead Sea transform fault, Dead Sea rift valley, from Vibroseis data - project DESERT 2000

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryberg, T.; Garfunkel, Z.; Qabbani, I.; El-Kelani, R.

    2001-12-01

    To study the shallowest part of the crust spanning the Dead Sea transform fault (DSF), in the Dead Sea rift valley, tomographic inversion techniques were applied to first-arrival travel times of direct P-waves generated by vibrating trucks. The line was 100 km long, was oriented approximately perpendicular to the DSF (WNW-ESE), and was centered on the DSF. Vibroseis spread length was 18 km. Travel times (250,000) were picked manually for 1700 shots and 180 receivers. The 2-D version of FAST by Zelt and Bartov (1998) was used for the tomographic inversion. Since the inversion is non-unique, extensive testing of model and inversion parameters was carried out. By varying model parameters (block size and shape) and inversion parameters (number of iterations, vertical and horizontal smoothing parameters, choice of reasonable starting models), a stable final velocity model was found. Checkerboard tests indicate that P-wave velocity structure is well resolved down to a depth of several kilometers. The final velocity model shows features that correlate with surface geology and also some buried features. The Dead Sea rift valley is approximately 27 km wide, bounded by inward-facing normal faults at kilometers 40 and 67 on our line. The DSF is located in the center of the rift valley, at kilometer 54, and the east-dipping, normal Zofar fault (ZF) is located on the west side of the valley at kilometer 42. Iso-velocity lines are seen to do the following from west to east across the rift valley. At the western boundary fault, lines <2.5 km/s, corresponding to young sediments, step downward ~200-300 m. At the ZF, lines <3.5 km/s step downward 1 km along a gently east-dipping ramp. Given this iso-velocity line configuration, the block between the western bounding fault and the ZF may be a slump block. At the DSF, iso-velocity lines <2.5 km/s step downward ~100 meters on the edge of the rift valley, but deeper lines, <3.5 km/s, step upward ~100 m, suggesting that there are

  4. Galapagos rift at 86 /sup 0/W: 4. Structure and morphology of hydrothermal fields and their relationship to the volcanic and tectonic processes of the rift valley

    SciTech Connect

    Crane, K.; Ballard, R.D.

    1980-03-10

    The Angus camera system is used to investigate the detailed structure and morphology of the active hydrothermal vent fields of the Galapagos Rift. Precision navigational data are combined with microtopographic information and detailed geological and biological observations obtained from an analysis of the color bottom pictures to create a series of three-dimensional models for each vent field.

  5. 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

  6. Interacting Factors That Influence Long-term Storage of Live Pasteurella tularensis Vaccine and Rift Valley Fever Virus

    PubMed Central

    Klein, Frederick; Walker, Jerry S.; Mahlandt, Bill G.; Carter, Richard C.; Orlando, Michael D.; Weirether, Francis J.; Lincoln, Ralph E.

    1969-01-01

    Studies were conducted on the interaction of various parameters which affect the storage stability and growth potential of liquid cultures of Pasteurella tularensis live vaccine strain (LVS) and Rift Valley fever virus Van Wyk strain (RVFV). Storage variables studied with LVS included four storage temperatures (4, -20, -65, -175 C), single and multiple freeze-thaw cycles, two freezing and two thawing rates (slow and fast), various inoculum levels (1, 3, 5, and 10%) for the determination of growth potential, and the retention of immunizing potential (mice and guinea pig) after storage. Neither the freezing rate nor the number of freeze-thaw cycles seriously affected the growth of LVS after storage at -175C; however, the slow rate of thaw proved deleterious as were all temperatures of storage except -175 C after 1 year of storage, as shown by both criteria of evaluation. RVFV produced in two combinations of cell lines and media (LM cell line-199 peptone medium and LDR cell line-Eagle's minimum essential medium) was stored at three serum levels (10, 20, 40%), three pH values (6.2., 7.0, 7.8), and three temperatures (-20, -65, -175 C). These studies indicated: (i) virus produced in the LDR cell line and Eagle's medium was more stable than that produced in the LM cell line and 199 peptone medium for either short- or long-term storage; (ii) serum levels did not affect stability; and (iii) low pH resulted in losses during long-term storage under all conditions tested. Thus, cryogenic storage is advantageous for stock culture maintenance of bacteria and viruses and for other similar applications. PMID:5780399

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Rift Valley Fever Virus Nonstructural Protein NSs Promotes Viral RNA Replication and Transcription in a Minigenome System

    PubMed Central

    Ikegami, Tetsuro; Peters, C. J.; Makino, Shinji

    2005-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), which belongs to the genus Phlebovirus, family Bunyaviridae, has a tripartite negative-strand genome (S, M, and L segments) and is an important mosquito-borne pathogen for domestic animals and humans. We established an RVFV T7 RNA polymerase-driven minigenome system in which T7 RNA polymerase from an expression plasmid drove expression of RNA transcripts for viral proteins and minigenome RNA transcripts carrying a reporter gene between both termini of the M RNA segment in 293T cells. Like other viruses of the Bunyaviridae family, replication and transcription of the RVFV minigenome required expression of viral N and L proteins. Unexpectedly, the coexpression of an RVFV nonstructural protein, NSs, with N and L proteins resulted in a significant enhancement of minigenome RNA replication. Coexpression of NSs protein with N and L proteins also enhanced minigenome mRNA transcription in the cells expressing viral-sense minigenome RNA transcripts. NSs protein expression increased the RNA replication of minigenomes that originated from S and L RNA segments. Enhancement of minigenome RNA synthesis by NSs protein occurred in cells lacking alpha/beta interferon (IFN-α/β) genes, indicating that the effect of NSs protein on minigenome RNA replication was unrelated to a putative NSs protein-induced inhibition of IFN-α/β production. Our finding that RVFV NSs protein augmented minigenome RNA synthesis was in sharp contrast to reports that Bunyamwera virus (genus Bunyavirus) NSs protein inhibits viral minigenome RNA synthesis, suggesting that RVFV NSs protein and Bunyamwera virus NSs protein have distinctly different biological roles in viral RNA synthesis. PMID:15827175

  13. Rift Valley fever MP-12 vaccine Phase 2 clinical trial: Safety, immunogenicity, and genetic characterization of virus isolates.

    PubMed

    Pittman, Phillip R; Norris, Sarah L; Brown, Elizabeth S; Ranadive, Manmohan V; Schibly, Barbara A; Bettinger, George E; Lokugamage, Nandadeva; Korman, Lawrence; Morrill, John C; Peters, Clarence J

    2016-01-20

    An outbreak or deliberate release of Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus could have serious public health and socioeconomic consequences. A safe RVF vaccine capable of eliciting long-lasting immunity after a single injection is urgently needed. The live attenuated RVF MP-12 vaccine candidate has shown promise in Phase 1 clinical trials; no evidence of reversion to virulence has been identified in numerous animal studies. The objective of this Phase 2 clinical trial was to (a) further examine the safety and immunogenicity of RVF MP-12 in RVF virus-naïve humans and (b) characterize isolates of RVF MP-12 virus recovered from the blood of vaccinated subjects to evaluate the genetic stability of MP-12 attenuation. We found that RVF MP-12 was well tolerated, causing mostly mild reactions that resolved without sequelae. Of 19 subjects, 18 (95%) and 19 (100%) achieved, respectively, 80% and 50% plaque reduction neutralization titers (PRNT80 and PRNT50)≥1:20 by postvaccination day 28. All 18 PRNT80 responders maintained PRNT80 and PRNT50≥1:40 until at least postvaccination month 12. Viremia was undetectable in the plasma of any subject by direct plaque assay techniques. However, 5 of 19 vaccinees were positive for MP-12 isolates in plasma by blind passage of plasma on Vero cells. Vaccine virus was also recovered from buffy coat material from one of those vaccinees and from one additional vaccinee. Through RNA sequencing of MP-12 isolates, we found no reversions of amino acids to those of the parent virulent virus (strain ZH548). Five years after a single dose of RVF MP-12 vaccine, 8 of 9 vaccinees (89%) maintained a PRNT80≥1:20. These findings support the continued development of RVF MP-12 as a countermeasure against RVF virus in humans. PMID:26706271

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Rift Valley fever in kidney transplant recipient returning from Mali with viral RNA detected in semen up to four months from symptom onset, France, autumn 2015.

    PubMed

    Haneche, Fatiha; Leparc-Goffart, Isabelle; Simon, Fabrice; Hentzien, Maxime; Martinez-Pourcher, Valérie; Caumes, Eric; Maquart, Marianne

    2016-05-01

    A 29-year-old kidney transplant recipient returning from Mali was diagnosed with Rift Valley fever (RVF) in France in autumn 2015. The patient was immunosuppressed due to his renal transplant. IgM and IgG specific to RVF virus (RVFV) were detected in cerebrospinal fluid and blood up to two months after symptom onset, whereas in urine, RVFV genomic RNA was detected by RT-PCR up to three months, and in semen up to four months post symptom onset. PMID:27172608

  20. The role of magmatic processes in strain localization from rift onset to rupture in East Africa and the Red Sea (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ebinger, C. J.; Lindsey, N.; Cote, D. M.; Keir, D.; Ayele, A.; Tiberi, C.

    2010-12-01

    The continental rift zones of East Africa, Red Sea, and Gulf of Aden are sites of mechanical stretching and heating of the lithosphere in response to regional plate pulling forces and dynamic upwelling(s) within the underlying mantle. In the East African and the southern Red Sea rifts magmatism accompanied initial faulting and plateau uplift, and magma intrusion continues to accommodate deformation in many sectors, including the deeply rooted Tanzanian craton. The surface volcanism is often spectacularly evident, but the intrusion of magma in the form of dikes and sills that do not reach Earth’s surface is far more difficult to detect. The aims of our data synthesis and modeling studies are to recognize and quantify the contribution of magmatism to plate boundary deformation within one geodynamic province: the uplifted plateaux above the African superplume province. The intense and ongoing dike intrusions that commenced in 2005 in the southernmost Red Sea rift in Afar proved an eye-opener, and alerted geoscientists to the attendant seismic and volcanic hazards within active rift zones. Recent dike intrusions in the East African and Red Sea rifts provide some constraints on the time and length scales of diking processes. Current strain distributions estimated from cumulative seismic and geodetic moment release (Lindsey et al., this session) indicate predominantly aseismic deformation, even near small volume volcanoes. We compare and contrast observations of strain and volcanism with thermo-mechanical properties of the plate to predict zones of subsurface magma intrusion and possible metasomatic modification of the mantle lithosphere.

  1. Continental rift jumps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wood, Charles A.

    1983-05-01

    Continental rift jumps, analogous to jumps of oceanic spreading ridges, are here proposed to be common. Good examples exist in Iceland and Afar (both transitional from ridge to rift jumps), West Africa (Benue Trough and Cameroon Volcanic Line), and Kenya. Indeed, the Kenya rift appears to have jumped c. 100 km eastward c. 10 m.y. ago and is currently jumping further to the east. Possible jumps exist in the Baikal rift, the Limagne-Bresse rift pair, and parallel to ancient continental margins (e.g., the Triassic basins of the eastern U.S. to Baltimore Canyon and Georges Bank). Continental rifts jump distances that are approximately equal to local lithosphere thickness, suggesting that jumped rifts are controlled by lithosphere fracturing, but there appears to be no reason for the fracturing except migration of hot spots.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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. PMID:1983457

  7. 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

  8. 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. PMID:17257783

  9. 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

    1991-01-01

    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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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).

  12. Relationship of Climate, Geography, and Geology to the Incidence of Rift Valley Fever in Kenya during the 2006–2007 Outbreak

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2012-01-01

    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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Prevalence of enteropathogens in stools of rural Maasai children under five years of age in the Maasailand region of the Kenyan Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Joyce, T; McGuigan, K G; Elmore-Meegan, M; Conroy, R M

    1996-01-01

    Stool samples were collected during August 1994 from seventy rural Maasai children under the age of five years who were living in the Maasailand region of the Kenyan Rift Valley. Microbiological analysis was carried out on these samples to identify which intestinal pathogens were present among the infant population of the Maasai. Of the samples studied 54% were pathogen positive. The most common pathogen isolated was Giardia lamblia which was detected in 31% of the samples. Other pathogens that were detected include: Entamoeba histolytica (23%), Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (13%), Strongyloides stercoralis (4%), Blastocystis hominis (3%) and Cryptosporidium sp (3%). Although all samples were screened for Campylobacter and rotavirus, neither pathogen was detected. Water samples were taken from all the water sources in the study area and analysed microbiologically. Results showed that all the sources were contaminated with the faecal E. coli whose populations ranged from 14 CFU/100 ml to greater than 1800 CFU/100ml. PMID:8625866

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Pre-3000 Ma thermal history of the Archean Kaap Valley puton, South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Layer, Paul W.; Kröner, Alfred; York, Derek

    1992-08-01

    The Kaap Valley pluton is one of several early Archean (3200-3500 Ma) tonalite-trondhjemite plutons that surround the Barberton Greenstone belt, southern Africa. Precise dating using single-grain 207Pb/206Pb evaporation of zircon and 40Ar/39Ar laser step-heating of hornblende and biotite indicates that, in its interior, the Kaap Valley pluton preserves a memory of its initial intrusion and cooling, which spanned a time from 3225 to 3142 Ma. The pluton also records the effect of a low-temperature thermal event at its margin as seen by a 40Ar/39Ar biotite age of 3035 Ma, which is perhaps related to hydrothermal activity and gold mineralization in the adjacent Barberton Greenstone belt. These pre-3000 Ma ages are not in agreement with results of dating studies from sedimentary rocks in the Barberton Greenstone belt and plutons south of the belt which show evidence of having been overprinted by late Archean events (2650-2700 Ma), and the Bushveld Complex intrusion (2050 Ma). These events have been interpreted as affecting most of the Kaapvaal craton. That the Kaap Valley pluton has escaped these and all other events since 3035 Ma with temperatures never reaching 250 °C implies that these large-scale events did not affect the entire craton and the overprinting seen elsewhere is of a more local nature. Thus, it is possible to determine the intrusive and cooling history of the pluton; these data can be used in developing models of heat flow, paleomagnetic remanence acquisition, and deformation events.

  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. Deep crustal earthquakes in North Tanzania, East Africa: Interplay between tectonic and magmatic processes in an incipient rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albaric, Julie; Déverchère, Jacques; Perrot, Julie; Jakovlev, Andrey; Deschamps, Anne

    2014-02-01

    In this study, we explore the origin of lower crustal seismicity and the factors controlling rift propagation using seismological data recorded within the youngest part of the East African Rift System, the North Tanzanian Divergence (NTD). Most earthquakes below Lake Manyara occur at depth ranging between 20 and 40 km and have a swarm-like distribution. Focal mechanisms of 26 events indicate a combination of strike-slip and normal faulting involving Archaean basement structures and forming a relay zone. The derived local stress regime is transtensive and the minimum principal stress is oriented N110°E. Crustal seismic tomography reveals low-velocity anomalies below the rifted basins in the NTD, interpreted as localized thermomechanical perturbations promoting fluid release and subsequent seismicity in the lower crust. SKS splitting analysis in the NTD indicates seismic anisotropy beneath 17 stations most likely due to aligned magma lenses and/or dikes beneath the rift and to the lithospheric fabrics. Our results favor a strain pattern intermediate between purely mechanical and purely magmatic. We suggest that melt products arising from a large asthenospheric thermal anomaly enhance lithospheric weakening and facilitate faulting and creeping on critically oriented inherited structures of the Precambrian lower crust. Although the crust is unlikely weakened at a point comparable to other parts of the East African Rift System, this deep-seated thermomechanical process is efficient enough to allow slow rift propagation within the eastern Tanzanian cratonic edge.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. Rift Valley Fever Virus Vaccine Lacking the NSs and NSm Genes Is Safe, Nonteratogenic, and Confers Protection from Viremia, Pyrexia, and Abortion following Challenge in Adult and Pregnant Sheep ▿

    PubMed Central

    Bird, Brian H.; Maartens, Louis H.; Campbell, Shelley; Erasmus, Baltus J.; Erickson, Bobbie R.; Dodd, Kimberly A.; Spiropoulou, Christina F.; Cannon, Deborah; Drew, Clifton P.; Knust, Barbara; McElroy, Anita K.; Khristova, Marina L.; Albariño, César G.; Nichol, Stuart T.

    2011-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is a mosquito-borne human and veterinary pathogen causing large outbreaks of severe disease throughout Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Safe and effective vaccines are critically needed, especially those that can be used in a targeted one-health approach to prevent both livestock and human disease. We report here on the safety, immunogenicity, and efficacy of the ΔNSs-ΔNSm recombinant RVFV (rRVFV) vaccine (which lacks the NSs and NSm virulence factors) in a total of 41 sheep, including 29 timed-pregnant ewes. This vaccine was proven safe and immunogenic for adult animals at doses ranging from 1.0 × 103 to 1.0 × 105 PFU administered subcutaneously (s.c.). Pregnant animals were vaccinated with 1.0 × 104 PFU s.c. at day 42 of gestation, when fetal sensitivity to RVFV vaccine-induced teratogenesis is highest. No febrile reactions, clinical illness, or pregnancy loss was observed following vaccination. Vaccination resulted in a rapid increase in anti-RVFV IgM (day 4) and IgG (day 7) titers. No seroconversion occurred in cohoused control animals. A subset of 20 ewes progressed to full-term delivery after vaccination. All lambs were born without musculoskeletal, neurological, or histological birth defects. Vaccine efficacy was assessed in 9 pregnant animals challenged at day 122 of gestation with virulent RVFV (1.0 × 106 PFU intravenously). Following challenge, 100% (9/9) of the animals were protected, progressed to full term, and delivered healthy lambs. As expected, all 3 sham-vaccinated controls experienced viremia, fetal death, and abortion postchallenge. These results demonstrate that the ΔNSs-ΔNSm rRVFV vaccine is safe and nonteratogenic and confers high-level protection in sheep. PMID:21976656

  6. The uppermost mantle beneath the Kenya dome and relation to melting, rifting and uplift in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Paul M.; Slack, Philip D.

    2002-04-01

    We compare new results on S-wave delays and P wave tomography to characterize the rising limb and melt zone of an inferred mantle convection cell beneath the Kenya dome. These results are extended to the Nyiragongo and Ethiopia domes using long wavelength gravity and topography. We suggest that the east African rift results from separation of deeper mantle upwelling into three currents that impinge on and erode the base of the lithosphere. Their thermal buoyancy drives the domal uplift, whereas brittle failure of the upper lithosphere forms the rift grabens.

  7. 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.

  8. 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. PMID:22639118

  9. 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

  10. Enemies and turncoats: bovine tuberculosis exposes pathogenic potential of Rift Valley fever virus in a common host, African buffalo (Syncerus caffer).

    PubMed

    Beechler, B R; Manore, C A; Reininghaus, B; O'Neal, D; Gorsich, E E; Ezenwa, V O; Jolles, A E

    2015-04-22

    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

  11. Co-housing of Rift Valley Fever Virus Infected Lambs with Immunocompetent or Immunosuppressed Lambs Does Not Result in Virus Transmission.

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is transmitted among susceptible animals by mosquito vectors. Although the virus can be isolated from nasal and oral swabs of infected animals and is known to be highly infectious when administered experimentally via oral or respiratory route, horizontal transmission of the virus is only sporadically reported in literature. We considered that immunosuppression resulting from stressful conditions in the field may increase the susceptibility to horizontally transmitted RVFV. Additionally, we reasoned that horizontal transmission may induce immune responses that could affect the susceptibility of contact-exposed animals to subsequent infection via mosquito vectors. To address these two hypotheses, viremic lambs were brought into contact with sentinel lambs. One group of sentinel lambs was treated with the immunosuppressive synthetic glucocorticosteroid dexamethasone and monitored for signs of disease and presence of virus in the blood and target organs. Another group of contact-exposed sentinel lambs remained untreated for three weeks and was subsequently challenged with RVFV. We found that none of the dexamethasone-treated contact-exposed lambs developed detectable viremia, antibody responses or significant increases in cytokine mRNA levels. Susceptibility of immunocompetent lambs to RVFV infection was not influenced by previous contact-exposure. Our results are discussed in light of previous findings. PMID:27014211

  12. Co-housing of Rift Valley Fever Virus Infected Lambs with Immunocompetent or Immunosuppressed Lambs Does Not Result in Virus Transmission

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) is transmitted among susceptible animals by mosquito vectors. Although the virus can be isolated from nasal and oral swabs of infected animals and is known to be highly infectious when administered experimentally via oral or respiratory route, horizontal transmission of the virus is only sporadically reported in literature. We considered that immunosuppression resulting from stressful conditions in the field may increase the susceptibility to horizontally transmitted RVFV. Additionally, we reasoned that horizontal transmission may induce immune responses that could affect the susceptibility of contact-exposed animals to subsequent infection via mosquito vectors. To address these two hypotheses, viremic lambs were brought into contact with sentinel lambs. One group of sentinel lambs was treated with the immunosuppressive synthetic glucocorticosteroid dexamethasone and monitored for signs of disease and presence of virus in the blood and target organs. Another group of contact-exposed sentinel lambs remained untreated for three weeks and was subsequently challenged with RVFV. We found that none of the dexamethasone-treated contact-exposed lambs developed detectable viremia, antibody responses or significant increases in cytokine mRNA levels. Susceptibility of immunocompetent lambs to RVFV infection was not influenced by previous contact-exposure. Our results are discussed in light of previous findings. PMID:27014211

  13. Practical considerations, column studies and natural organic material competition for fluoride removal with bone char and aluminum amended materials in the Main Ethiopian Rift Valley.

    PubMed

    Brunson, Laura R; Sabatini, David A

    2014-08-01

    The fluoride removal capacities of three materials, bone char (BC), aluminum oxide coated bone char (ACBC) and aluminum oxide impregnated wood char (AIWC), along with activated alumina (AA) as a baseline material, were investigated in batch and column studies, including comparison between synthetic and natural groundwater. Results suggest that in all cases the laboratory column results exhibited higher fluoride removal efficiency than the field studies conducted in the Ethiopian Rift Valley. Further studies indicate that the reduced effectiveness in the field was likely due to a combination of the high pH of groundwater (8.2) and the presence of competing ions (sulfate). Batch studies testing potential competition from natural organic material (NOM) showed no statistical evidence of NOM competition with BC and minor evidence of competition with ACBC and AIWC. To provide evidence for using Rapid Scale Small Column Test (RSSCT) principles for BC two different column volume and particle sizes were used. The results indicate that RSSCT scaling equations, developed for activated carbon, are applicable for BC removal of fluoride. These results thus provide valuable insights for translating laboratory results of novel sorbents for mitigating fluoride tainted groundwater in the field. PMID:24393599

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Transition From a Magmatic to a Tectonic Rift System : Seismotectonics of the Eyasi- Manyara Region, Northern Tanzania, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albaric, J.; Perrot, J.; Deschamps, A.; Deverchere, J.; Wambura, R. F.; Tiberi, C.; Petit, C.; Le Gall, B.; Sue, C.

    2008-12-01

    How a rift system propagates and breaks throughout a cold and thick continental crust remains poorly known. Only few places allow to address the question. In the East African Rift System (EARS), the eastern magma- rich branch abruptly splits into two amagmatic arms (the Eyasi and Manyara faulted systems), south of a E-W volcanic chain (the Ngorongoro-Kilimanjaro transverse volcanic belt), as crossing the Archaean Tanzanian craton margin. We present the first detailed seismotectonic picture of the Eyasi-Manyara rifts where a network of ~25 seismometers was settled from June to November 2007 (SEISMO-TANZ'07 seismological experiment). From the seismicity recorded by the network, we identify active faults and discuss the stress field framework obtained from the inversion of focal mechanisms. We use the determined depth of earthquakes (1) to discuss the crustal structure of the transition zone from a magma-rich to a magma-starved section of the EARS and (2) to further emphasize the rheological control on depth distributions in the EARS (Albaric et al., Tectonophysics, 2008). The stress and strain directions deduced from our work are also used to question recently published kinematics and conceptual models of the EARS (Calais et al., Geol. Soc. London, 2006 ; Le Gall et al., Tectonophysics, 2008).

  4. 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).

  5. Indications of habitat association of Australopithecus robustus in the Bloubank Valley, South Africa.

    PubMed

    de Ruiter, Darryl J; Sponheimer, Matt; Lee-Thorp, Julia A

    2008-12-01

    Establishing the habitat preferences of early hominin taxa is a necessary, though difficult, requirement for understanding the interaction between environmental change and hominin evolution. The environments typically associated with Australopithecus robustus have been reconstructed as predominantly open grasslands situated within a habitat mosaic that included a more wooded component with a nearby perennial water source. Most studies have concluded that the open grassland component represents the habitat preference of the hominins. In this study we investigate indicators of habitat association of A. robustus that are preserved in the animal paleocommunities represented in a series of fossil cave infills in the Bloubank Valley of South Africa, including Swartkrans, Sterkfontein, Kromdraai, and Coopers. Testing for conditions of isotaphonomy reveals a potential bias relating to depositional matrix and perhaps accumulating agent, though such a bias has not unduly influenced the taxonomic composition the assemblages. Correspondence analysis of census data from modern African nature reserves demonstrates that carnivore predation patterns are indicative of animal communities, which in turn are representative of habitats. As a result, modern census data are used to document patterns of habitat preference of large herbivores, thus allowing assignment of fossil taxa to a series of broadly defined habitat categories. Correspondence analysis of fossil assemblages reveals that the abundance profile of A. robustus is most similar to that of woodland-adapted taxa. In addition, fluctuations in the relative abundance of taxa assigned to the broad habitat categories reveal a significant negative correlation between A. robustus and open grassland-adapted taxa, indicating that the more grassland-adapted taxa there are in a given assemblage, the fewer hominins there tend to be. Thus, it appears that the open grasslands that comprise the majority of the paleoenvironments associated

  6. 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.

  7. Assessment of heavy metals in water samples and tissues of edible fish species from Awassa and Koka Rift Valley Lakes, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Dsikowitzky, Larissa; Mengesha, Mesfin; Dadebo, Elias; de Carvalho, Carlos Eduardo Veiga; Sindern, Sven

    2013-04-01

    The Ethiopian Rift Valley Lakes host populations of edible fish species including Oreochromis niloticus, Labeobarbus intermedius and Clarias gariepinus, which are harvested also in other tropical countries. We investigated the occurrence of six heavy metals in tissues of these fish species as well as in the waters of Lake Koka and Lake Awassa. Both lakes are affected by industrial effluents in their catchments, making them ideal study sites. Mercury concentrations were very low in the water samples, but concentrations in the fish samples were relatively high, suggesting a particularly high bioaccumulation tendency as compared with the other investigated metals. Mercury was preferentially accumulated in the fish liver or muscle. It was the only metal with species-specific accumulation with highest levels found in the predatory species L. intermedius. Lower mercury concentrations in O. niloticus could be attributed to the lower trophic level, whereas mercury values in the predatory C. gariepinus were unexpectedly low. This probably relates to the high growth rate of this species resulting in biodilution of mercury. Accumulation of lead, selenium, chromium, arsenic and cadmium did not differ between species, indicating that these elements are not biomagnified in the food chain. Values of cadmium, selenium and arsenic were highest in fish livers, while lead and chromium levels were highest in the gills, which could be related to the uptake pathway. A significant impact of the industrial discharges on the occurrence of metals in the lakes could not be detected, and the respective concentrations in fish do not pose a public health hazard. PMID:22821322

  8. 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

  9. Depositional character and preservation potential of coarse-grained sediments deposited by flood events in hyper-arid braided channels in the Rift Valley, Arava, Israel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laronne, Jonathan B.; Shlomi, Yanai

    2007-02-01

    Four coarse-grained braided channels undergoing rapid deposition in the hyper-arid Arava Rift Valley have been studied to determine the dynamics of strata deposition by monitored flood events and to ascertain the sedimentologic character of these event deposits. The systems span granule-sand to sandy-gravel bed material having longitudinal bars with simultaneously increasing grains size, slope and bed relief. Scour and fill were monitored along cross-sections using scour chains and repeat surveys, while event strata (=fill) were described with reference to sediment calibre, type of support, grading, thickness and location. Unlike many previous investigations of gravel sedimentology, the source of information for this study involves not only stratigraphic description but also observation of the concomitant dynamics of the channel bed as expressed by the extent of event deposition. The texture of the deposited sediment generally coarsens in sympathy with the surface bed texture of the studied channels. The thickness of event-deposited sediments increases as the magnitude of flow events increases. The stratigraphic record is characterized by: (1) sub-parallel stratification, (2) no grading, (3) clast-supported gravel infilled with sand-granule matrices and (4) rapid sedimentation rates. This character is hypothesized to mirror the elevated bedload fluxes in this hyper-arid fluvial setting. Lacking densely-vegetated banks, the proximal braidplain of this arid environment often contains no extensive fine-textured floodplain successions. The depth of fill as well as the extent of strata obliteration increase with flood magnitude, explaining the increased preservation potential of event strata with increase in flood magnitude. It also explains why most event strata, including large ones, are only partially preserved.

  10. 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 Central

    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

  11. 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

  12. Safety and immunogenicity of a mutagenized, live attenuated Rift Valley fever vaccine, MP-12, in a Phase 1 dose escalation and route comparison study in humans.

    PubMed

    Pittman, Phillip R; McClain, David; Quinn, Xiaofei; Coonan, Kevin M; Mangiafico, Joseph; Makuch, Richard S; Morrill, John; Peters, Clarence J

    2016-01-20

    Rift Valley fever (RVF) poses a risk as a potential agent in bioterrorism or agroterrorism. A live attenuated RVF vaccine (RVF MP-12) has been shown to be safe and protective in animals and showed promise in two initial clinical trials. In the present study, healthy adult human volunteers (N=56) received a single injection of (a) RVF MP-12, administered subcutaneously (SQ) at a concentration of 10(4.7) plaque-forming units (pfu) (SQ Group); (b) RVF MP-12, administered intramuscularly (IM) at 10(3.4)pfu (IM Group 1); (c) RVF MP-12, administered IM at 10(4.4)pfu (IM Group 2); or (d) saline (Placebo Group). The vaccine was well tolerated by volunteers in all dose and route groups. Infrequent and minor adverse events were seen among recipients of both placebo and RVF MP-12. One subject had viremia detectable by direct plaque assay, and six subjects from IM Group 2 had transient low-titer viremia detectable only by nucleic acid amplification. Of the 43 vaccine recipients, 40 (93%) achieved neutralizing antibodies (measured as an 80% plaque reduction neutralization titer [PRNT80]) as well as RVF-specific IgM and IgG. The highest peak geometric mean PRNT80 titers were observed in IM Group 2. Of 34 RVF MP-12 recipients available for testing 1 year following inoculation, 28 (82%) remained seropositive (PRNT80≥1:20); this included 20 of 23 vaccinees (87%) from IM Group 2. The live attenuated RVF MP-12 vaccine was safe and immunogenic at the doses and routes studied. Given the need for an effective vaccine against RVF virus, further evaluation in humans is warranted. PMID:26718688

  13. 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.

  14. The influence of pre-existing structures on the evolution of the southern Kenya Rift Valley — evidence from seismic and gravity studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Birt, C. S.; Maguire, P. K. H.; Khan, M. A.; Thybo, H.; Keller, G. R.; Patel, J.

    1997-09-01

    The Kenya Rift is an active continental rift that has developed since the Late Oligocene. Although a thermal origin for the rifting episode is indicated by the scale of volcanism and its relative timing with uplift and faulting, the influence of pre-existing lithospheric structural controls is poorly understood. The interpretation of a 430-km-long seismic refraction and gravity line across the southern part of the Kenya Rift shows that the rift is developed across a transition zone, thought to represent the sheared Proterozoic boundary between the Archaean Nyanza Craton and the mobile Mozambique Belt. This zone of weakness has been exploited by the recent thermal rifting event. The Moho is at a depth of 33 km beneath the Archaean craton in the western part of the profile, and 40 km beneath the Mozambique Belt in the east. A few kilometres of localised crustal thinning has developed across the transition from thin to thick crust. At the surface, brittle faulting has formed an asymmetric rift basin 3.6 km deep, filled with low-velocity volcanic rocks. Basement velocities show a transition across the same area from low velocities (6.0 km s -1) in the Archaean, to high velocities (6.35 km s -1) in the Proterozoic. Mid-crustal layers show no deformation that can be attributed to the rifting event. Poorly constrained upper mantle velocities of 7.8 km s -1 beneath the southern rift confirm the continuation of the axial low-velocity zone imaged in previous seismic experiments. This is interpreted as the effect of small degrees of partial melt caused by elevated mantle temperatures. Gravity modelling suggests a contribution to the Bouguer anomaly from below the Moho, invoking the need for deep density contrasts. The regional gravity gradient necessary to model the Bouguer anomaly is used as supporting evidence for mantle-plume type circulation beneath the uplifted East African Plateau to the west of the Kenya Rift.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 3D features of delayed thermal convection in fault zones: consequences for deep fluid processes in the Tiberias Basin, Jordan Rift Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Magri, Fabien; Möller, Sebastian; Inbar, Nimrod; Siebert, Christian; Möller, Peter; Rosenthal, Eliyahu; Kühn, Michael

    2015-04-01

    It has been shown that thermal convection in faults can also occur for subcritical Rayleigh conditions. This type of convection develops after a certain period and is referred to as "delayed convection" (Murphy, 1979). The delay in the onset is due to the heat exchange between the damage zone and the surrounding units that adds a thermal buffer along the fault walls. Few numerical studies investigated delayed thermal convection in fractured zones, despite it has the potential to transport energy and minerals over large spatial scales (Tournier, 2000). Here 3D numerical simulations of thermally driven flow in faults are presented in order to investigate the impact of delayed convection on deep fluid processes at basin-scale. The Tiberias Basin (TB), in the Jordan Rift Valley, serves as study area. The TB is characterized by upsurge of deep-seated hot waters along the faulted shores of Lake Tiberias and high temperature gradient that can locally reach 46 °C/km, as in the Lower Yarmouk Gorge (LYG). 3D simulations show that buoyant flow ascend in permeable faults which hydraulic conductivity is estimated to vary between 30 m/yr and 140 m/yr. Delayed convection starts respectively at 46 and 200 kyrs and generate temperature anomalies in agreement with observations. It turned out that delayed convective cells are transient. Cellular patterns that initially develop in permeable units surrounding the faults can trigger convection also within the fault plane. The combination of these two convective modes lead to helicoidal-like flow patterns. This complex flow can explain the location of springs along different fault traces of the TB. Besides being of importance for understanding the hydrogeological processes of the TB (Magri et al., 2015), the presented simulations provide a scenario illustrating fault-induced 3D cells that could develop in any geothermal system. References Magri, F., Inbar, N., Siebert, C., Rosenthal, E., Guttman, J., Möller, P., 2015. Transient

  18. Peak discharges in steep mountain catchments in relation to rainfall variability, vegetation cover and geomorphology of the Rift Valley Escarpment of Northern Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gebreyohannes, Tesfaalem; Frankl, Amaury; Haile, Mitiku; Abraha, Amanuel; Monsieurs, Elise; Nyssen, Jan

    2015-04-01

    The hydrological characteristics of steep mountain streams are often considered to be mainly influenced by rainfall distribution and topography. In this study, with the objective of analyzing the runoff response of mountain catchments, a total of 340 peak stage discharges were recorded in three rainy seasons (2012-2014) in 11 sloping (27-65%) mountain catchments (0.4 - 25 km²) of the marginal western Rift Valley escarpment of Northern Ethiopia. Daily rainfall data were collected using 7 rain gauges installed at different altitudes (1623 - 2851 m a.s.l) in and nearby the catchments, and used to calculate weighted average daily rain depths over the catchments. Event peak discharges were calculated from daily measurements by 11 crest stage gauges using the Manning's equation. Percentages of land use and cover classes were detected from high resolution (0.6 m) Google Earth imagery (February 1, 2014). Morphometric characteristics of the catchments were computed from ASTER digital elevation model and topographic maps. Correlation analysis between daily rainfall and peak discharge showed direct relationship (R² = 0.5-0.94, P<0.01) in all the catchments. The average specific peak discharge was negatively related to percentage of forest and grass cover (R² = 0.64, P<0.01), time of concentration (R² = 0.31, P<0.01), drainage texture (R² = 0.42, P<0.01), and catchment perimeter (R² = 0.36, P<0.01). The specific peak discharge was positively correlated with average slope gradient of the catchments (R² = 0.34, P<0.01) and with an index representing the spatial distribution of forest and grass cover (R² = 0.43, P<0.01). A stepwise multiple regression analyses showed that 84% (P<0.01) of the variability of the runoff response in the catchments can be predicted by the percentage of forest and grass cover and the relief ratio of the catchments. All in all, this study demonstrates that the magnitude of flash floods in mountain catchments is not only influenced by the

  19. 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

  20. The impact of reforestation on discharge and sediment fluxes in drylands: long-term evidences from the Western Rift Valley Escarpment (Northern Ethiopia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asfaha, Tesfaalem; Frankl, Amaury; Zenebe, Amanuel; Haile, Mitiku; Nyssen, Jan

    2014-05-01

    Deforestation and land degradation have been common problems in the Northern Ethiopian highlands, including for the Western Rift Valley Escarpment. In particular, the rapid deforestation of the steep catchments (average slope gradient of 44% ± 10%) in the second half of 20th century, together with rainfall variability and over-cultivation, resulted in the development of dense gully and scar networks. Subsequently, huge amounts sediment were taken to the densely populated graben bottoms. In response, extensive reforestation interventions were carried out as of the 1980s, resulting in improvements of vegetation cover in many catchments. This study analyses the spatio-temporal changes in vegetation cover and rainfall variability and their impact on discharge and sediment transport in escarpment catchments. Degree of rehabilitation was examined in 20 adjacent catchments by correlating the density of scar networks incised down to the bed rock with Normalize Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and slope gradient. Based on these results, 11 contrasting catchments were selected for detailed investigation. To study the current spatio-temporal variability in rainfall and its relation with daily peak discharge, 7 rain gauges were installed at different locations and altitudes. Trendlines of decadal rainfall variability since 1996 will be established based on the analysis of NOAA's rainfall estimates, and long-term rainfall variability will be explored by correlating the field data to long-term rainfall measurements in nearby synoptic stations. The changes in land use and cover will be detected from aerial photos of the 1935, 1965 and 1986. Peak discharges were monitored using 11 crest stage gauges. Fixed boulders were painted in stream reaches to quantify the transport of bedload. This was done by photographing the stream reaches and by measuring the displacement of painted boulders after flood events. In a multiple regression analysis, scar density was negatively related

  1. 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

  2. Metasomatized lithospheric mantle beneath Turkana depression in southern Ethiopia (the East Africa Rift): geochemical and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic characteristics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meshesha, Daniel; Shinjo, Ryuichi; Matsumura, Risa; Chekol, Takele

    2011-11-01

    Mantle xenoliths entrained in Quaternary alkaline basalts from the Turkana Depression in southern Ethiopia (the East Africa Rift) were studied for their geochemical and Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic compositions to constrain the evolution of the lithosphere. The investigated mantle xenoliths are spinel lherzolites in composition with a protogranular texture. They can be classified into two types: anhydrous and hydrous spinel lherzolites; the latter group characterized by the occurrences of pargasite and phlogopite. The compositions of whole-rock basaltic component (CaO = 3.8-5.6 wt%, Al2O3 = 2.5-4.1 wt%, and MgO = 34.7-38.1 wt%), spinel (Cr# = 0.062-0.117, Al2O3 = 59.0-64.4 wt%) and clinopyroxene (Mg# = 88.4-91.7, Al2O3 = 5.2-6.7 wt%) indicate that the lherzolites are fertile and have not experienced significant partial melting. Both types are characterized by depleted 87Sr/86Sr (0.70180-0.70295) and high 143Nd/144Nd (0.51299-0.51348) with wide ranges of 206Pb/204Pb (17.86-19.68) isotopic compositions. The variations of geochemical and isotopic compositions can be explained by silicate metasomatism induced by different degree of magma infiltrations from ascending mantle plume. The thermobarometric estimations suggest that the spinel lherzolites were derived from depths of 50-70 km (15.6-22.2 kb) and entrained in the alkaline magma at 847-1,052°C. Most of the spinel lherzolites from this study record an elevated geotherm (60-90 mW/m2) that is related to the presence of rising mantle plume in an active tectonic setting. Sm-Nd isotopic systematic gives a mean TDM model age of 0.95 Ga, interpreted as the minimum depletion age of the subcontinental lithosphere beneath the region.

  3. 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, crustal deformation and climate change. First, we propose an inventory of erosion surfaces observed in the study area and classify them according to their most likely formative process, i.e. chemical weathering or mechanical erosion. Among the various land units observed we define a new class of landform: the pedivalley, which corresponds to a wide valley with a flat erosional floor. In the Orange River valley, we mapped three low-relief erosion surfaces, each bevelling a variety of lithologies. The oldest and most elevated is (1) a stripped etchplain evolving laterally into (2) a stepped pediplain bearing residual inselbergs; (3) a younger pediplain later formed in response to a more recent event of crustal deformation. These are all Cenozoic landforms: the etchplain is associated with a late Palaeocene to middle Eocene weathering event, and the two pediplains are older than the middle Miocene alluvial terraces of the Orange River. Landscape evolution was first driven by slow uplift (10 m/Ma), followed by a second interval of uplift involving a cumulative magnitude of at least 200 m. This event shaped the transition between the two pediplains and modified the drainage pattern. A final phase of uplift (magnitude: 60 m) occurred after the Middle Miocene and drove the incision of the lower terraces of the Orange River. Climate exerted a major control over the denudation process, and involved very humid conditions responsible for lateritic weathering, followed by more arid conditions, which promoted the formation of pedivalleys. Collectively, these produce pediplains.

  4. Understanding Natural and Human-induced Impacts on the Hydrology of Central Rift Valley Lakes in Ethiopia Using Hydrologic Modeling and Remote Sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seyoum, W. M.; Milewski, A.

    2013-12-01

    In the past decades lake level fluctuations have been observed in the Central Rift Valley (CRV) lakes of Ethiopia, specifically Lake Abiyata, which is receding at an alarming rate. The cause is largely unknown and thus this research identifies and quantifies the causes and effects of climate variability and human-induced factors on the CRV lakes in Ethiopia using ground data, remote sensing, and hydrologic modeling. The CRV is a closed basin with an area of 10,185 sq. km. and contains three major surficially interconnected lakes: Lake Abiyata, Lake Langano and Lake Ziway. Remote sensing data (e.g. LANDSAT and TRMM) and ground data (e.g. river discharge, lake levels) was analyzed to understand the impact of climate variability on the lakes. Image processing such as radiometric correction and Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI) was performed to calculate the surface area of the lakes and understand the temporal variation. The semi-distributed physically based hydrologic model, Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), was employed to estimate the total surface runoff to the lakes. SWAT was simulated from 1980 to 2010 and monthly preliminary calibration was performed from 1985 to 2000 using two river gauging stations. The preliminary R2 and Nash-Sutcliffe simulation efficiency values are 0.65 and 0.60, and 0.61 and 0.60. The output from SWAT, total runoff, along with precipitation and evaporation is used to calculate the water budget of each lake. Changes in the total volume of lake water were converted to changes in water heights using the geometry data of lakes (e.g. bathymetry data). The modeled lake level time series, which does not take into account the abstraction rates, are compared with the remote sensing and ground observed data. Surface area mapping from satellite imagery shows that the surface Area of L. Ziway and L. Langano remained unchanged throughout the period 1985 - 2010, whereas the surface area of L. Abiyata is decreasing from approximately 180 sq. km

  5. Understanding Natural and Human-induced Impacts on the Hydrology of Central Rift Valley Lakes in Ethiopia Using Hydrologic Modeling and Remote Sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seyoum, W. M.; Milewski, A.

    2011-12-01

    In the past decades lake level fluctuations have been observed in the Central Rift Valley (CRV) lakes of Ethiopia, specifically Lake Abiyata, which is receding at an alarming rate. The cause is largely unknown and thus this research identifies and quantifies the causes and effects of climate variability and human-induced factors on the CRV lakes in Ethiopia using ground data, remote sensing, and hydrologic modeling. The CRV is a closed basin with an area of 10,185 sq. km. and contains three major surficially interconnected lakes: Lake Abiyata, Lake Langano and Lake Ziway. Remote sensing data (e.g. LANDSAT and TRMM) and ground data (e.g. river discharge, lake levels) was analyzed to understand the impact of climate variability on the lakes. Image processing such as radiometric correction and Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI) was performed to calculate the surface area of the lakes and understand the temporal variation. The semi-distributed physically based hydrologic model, Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), was employed to estimate the total surface runoff to the lakes. SWAT was simulated from 1980 to 2010 and monthly preliminary calibration was performed from 1985 to 2000 using two river gauging stations. The preliminary R2 and Nash-Sutcliffe simulation efficiency values are 0.65 and 0.60, and 0.61 and 0.60. The output from SWAT, total runoff, along with precipitation and evaporation is used to calculate the water budget of each lake. Changes in the total volume of lake water were converted to changes in water heights using the geometry data of lakes (e.g. bathymetry data). The modeled lake level time series, which does not take into account the abstraction rates, are compared with the remote sensing and ground observed data. Surface area mapping from satellite imagery shows that the surface Area of L. Ziway and L. Langano remained unchanged throughout the period 1985 - 2010, whereas the surface area of L. Abiyata is decreasing from approximately 180 sq. km

  6. Constraining the thermal and erosional evolution of the Rwenzori Mtns, Albertine Rift, by detrital thermochronology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, F. U.; Roller, S.; Grobe, R. W.; Glasmacher, U. A.; Hinderer, M.; Ring, U.; Mambo, V. S.

    2012-04-01

    In East Africa, the feedback between tectonic uplift, erosional denudation and associated possible climate changes is being studied by a multidisciplinary research group, 'RiftLink'. The group's focus is the Albertine Rift of the East African Rift System, and therein rising Rwenzori Mountains that stretch along the border of Uganda and Eastern D.R. Congo. Data from low-temperature thermochronology analysis of hardrocks comprising apatite fission-track (AFT), zircon and apatite (U-Th-Sm)/He dating (ZHe, AHe) and thermal modelling point to a prolonged cooling history with differentiated exhumation in Neogene times. The final rock uplift in Plio- to Pleistocene times, thereby, was very fast that the erosion could not keep pace [1]. In order to narrow the final exhumation stage detrital thermochronology has proven to be very useful. Therefore, sedimentary successions of the Albertine Rift valley in western Uganda and Eastern D.R. Congo were sampled to perform AFT, ZHe and AHe dating of detrital sediments. In the frame of the presentation we will present first results from the detrital thermochronology study of the Albertine Rift and will discuss its implications for the landscape evolution of this area.

  7. 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.

  8. Rift propagation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parmentier, E. M.; Schubert, G.

    1989-01-01

    A model for rift propagation which treats the rift as a crack in an elastic plate which is filled from beneath by upwelling viscous asthenosphere as it lengthens and opens. Growth of the crack is driven by either remotely applied forces or the pressure of buoyant asthenosphere in the crack and is resisted by viscous stresses associated with filling the crack. The model predicts a time for a rift to form which depends primarily on the driving stress and asthenosphere viscosity. For a driving stress on the order of 10 MPa, as expected from the topography of rifted swells, the development of rifts over times of a few Myr requires an asthenosphere viscosity of 10 to the 16th Pa s (10 to the 17th poise). This viscosity, which is several orders of magnitude less than values determined by postglacial rebound and at least one order of magnitude less than that inferred for spreading center propagation, may reflect a high temperature or large amount of partial melting in the mantle beneath a rifted swell.

  9. Interim Report on SNP analysis and forensic microarray probe design for South American hemorrhagic fever viruses, tick-borne encephalitis virus, henipaviruses, Old World Arenaviruses, filoviruses, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever viruses, Rift Valley fever

    SciTech Connect

    Jaing, C; Gardner, S

    2012-06-05

    The goal of this project is to develop forensic genotyping assays for select agent viruses, enhancing the current capabilities for the viral bioforensics and law enforcement community. We used a multipronged approach combining bioinformatics analysis, PCR-enriched samples, microarrays and TaqMan assays to develop high resolution and cost effective genotyping methods for strain level forensic discrimination of viruses. We have leveraged substantial experience and efficiency gained through year 1 on software development, SNP discovery, TaqMan signature design and phylogenetic signature mapping to scale up the development of forensics signatures in year 2. In this report, we have summarized the whole genome wide SNP analysis and microarray probe design for forensics characterization of South American hemorrhagic fever viruses, tick-borne encephalitis viruses and henipaviruses, Old World Arenaviruses, filoviruses, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus, Rift Valley fever virus and Japanese encephalitis virus.

  10. Multi-Faceted Proteomic Characterization of Host Protein Complement of Rift Valley Fever Virus Virions and Identification of Specific Heat Shock Proteins, Including HSP90, as Important Viral Host Factors

    PubMed Central

    Nuss, Jonathan E.; Kehn-Hall, Kylene; Benedict, Ashwini; Costantino, Julie; Ward, Michael; Peyser, Brian D.; Retterer, Cary J.; Tressler, Lyal E.; Wanner, Laura M.; McGovern, Hugh F.; Zaidi, Anum; Anthony, Scott M.; Kota, Krishna P.; Bavari, Sina; Hakami, Ramin M.

    2014-01-01

    Rift Valley fever is a potentially fatal disease of humans and domestic animals caused by Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV). Infection with RVFV in ruminants can cause near 100% abortion rates and recent outbreaks in naïve human populations have suggested case fatality rates of greater than thirty percent. To elucidate the roles that host proteins play during RVFV infection, proteomic analysis of RVFV virions was conducted using complementary analytical approaches, followed by functional validation studies of select identified host factors. Coupling the more traditional Gel LC/MS/MS approach (SDS PAGE followed by liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry) with an alternative technique that preserves protein complexes allowed the protein complement of these viral particles to be thoroughly examined. In addition to viral proteins present within the virions and virion-associated host proteins, multiple macromolecular complexes were identified. Bioinformatic analysis showed that host chaperones were among over-represented protein families associated with virions, and functional experiments using siRNA gene silencing and small molecule inhibitors identified several of these heat shock proteins, including heat shock protein 90 (HSP90), as important viral host factors. Further analysis indicated that HSP inhibition effects occur during the replication/transcription phase of the virus life cycle, leading to significant lowering of viral titers without compromising the functional capacity of released virions. Overall, these studies provide much needed further insight into interactions between RVFV and host cells, increasing our understanding of the infection process and suggesting novel strategies for anti-viral development. In particular, considering that several HSP90 inhibitors have been advancing through clinical trials for cancer treatment, these results also highlight the exciting potential of repurposing HSP90 inhibitors to treat RVF. PMID:24809507

  11. Off rift and on rift volcanism along the southern most extremity of the Reykjanes Ridge.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoskuldsson, Armann; Martinez, Fernando; Hey, Richard

    2014-05-01

    In August-September 2013 R/V Marcus G Langseth conducted a geophysical survey of the southern Reykjanes Ridge and flanks to the Bight transform fault including the first orthogonally spreading segment to the south. The objectives were to better understand how the Reykjanes Ridge replaced the earlier transform fault-dominated structure. The survey acquired full-coverage multibeam bathymetry of some 90,000 km2 and acoustic backscatter imagery and coincident gravity and magnetic profiles. The Rift axis of the RR is defined by a rift valley, striking 36° NE, and deepens from N to S towards the Bight transform fault. Volcanism along the rift axis is characterized by en-echelon volcanic ridges striking 14°NE and rising some 400-1000 m above the valley floor, single circular volcanic sea mounts 400-600 m high, lava flow sheets and craters. Fissures and faults are not very prominent with in the rift valley. However, at both sides bounding the rift valley, fissure, faults and uplifting of the crust is a dominant feature. Surprisingly numerous volcanic edifices are observed on the faulted crust drifting away from the plate boundary. Further these volcanic edifices do not all show any faulting and have cone shape forms, indicating more explosive activity than within the rift. The volcanic edifices range in size from 2-3 km at the base to some hundreds of meters. Backscatter analysis shows that in general the volcanic edifices have higher values than the surrounding basement. These vents are observed as far as 100 km from the rifting center. High backscatter along with little or no faulting indicates that these off rift volcanic vents are younger than the basement they are resting on, thus manifesting that volcanism is not solely confined to the active rift boundary in the area. The segment south of Bight transform fault is highly dotted by these off rift volcanic vents

  12. Africa.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Happel, Sue; Loeb, Joyce

    Although the activities in this unit are designed primarily for students in the intermediate grades, the document's text, illustrations, and bibliographic references are suitable for anyone interested in learning about Africa. Following a brief introduction and map work, the document is arranged into six sections. Section 1 traces Africa's history…

  13. Africa.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martz, Carlton

    2001-01-01

    This publication explores issues related to Africa. It examines the U.S. response to the Barbary pirate states (Morocco, Algiers, Tunis, Tripoli) in the early 19th century; the current AIDS crisis in Africa; and 14th century Mali and other Islamic lands through the eyes of Ibn Battuta, who traveled throughout the Muslim world. Each article…

  14. Gravity study of the Central African Rift system: A model of continental disruption 1. The Ngaoundere and Abu Gabra Rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Browne, S. E.; Fairhead, J. D.

    1983-05-01

    A regional compilation of published and unpublished gravity data for Central Africa is presented and reveals the presence of a major rift system, called here, the Central African Rift System. It is proposed that the junction area between the Ngaoundere and Abu Gabra rift arms in Western Sudan forms an incipient intraplate, triple-junction with the as yet unfractured, but domally uplifted and volcanically active, Darfur swell. It is only the Darfur swell that shows any similarities to the uplift and rift history of East Africa. The other two rifts arms are considered to be structurally similar to the early stages of passive margin development and thus reflect more closely the initial processes of continental fragmentation than the structures associated with rifting in East Africa.

  15. Is the Ventersdorp rift system of southern Africa related to a continental collision between the Kaapvaal and Zimbabwe Cratons at 2.64 Ga AGO?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    1985-01-01

    Rocks of the Ventersdorp Supergroup were deposited in a system of northeast trending grabens on the Kaapvaal Craton approximately 2.64 Ga ago contemporary with a continental collision between the Kaapvaal and Zimbabwe Cratons. It is suggested that it was this collision that initiated the Ventersdorp rifting. Individual grabens strike at high angles toward the continental collision zone now exposed in the Limpopo Province where late orogenic left-lateral strike-slip faulting and anatectic granites are recognized. The Ventersdorp rift province is related to extension in the Kaapvaal Craton associated with the collision, and some analogy is seen with such rifts as the Shansi and Baikal Systems associated with the current India-Asia continental collision.

  16. The 1974 Ethiopian rift geodimeter survey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mohr, P.

    1977-01-01

    The field techniques and methods of data reduction for five successive geodimeter surveys in the Ethiopian rift valley are enlarged upon, with the considered conclusion that there is progressive accumulation of upper crustal strain, consonant with on-going rift extension. The extension is restricted to the Quaternary volcanotectonic axis of the rift, namely the Wonji fault belt, and is occurring at rates of 3 to 6 mm/yr in the northern sector of the rift valley. Although this concurs with the predictions of platetectonic analysis of the Afar triple junction, it is considered premature to endorse such a concurrence on the basis of only 5 years of observations. This is underlined by the detection of local tectonic contractions and expansions associated with geothermal and gravity anomalies in the central sector of the rift valley. There is a hint of a component of dextral slip along some of the rift-floor fault zones, both from geological evidence and from the strain patterns detected in the present geodetic surveys.

  17. Syn-rift, syn-glacial and syn-orogenic sedimentary mélanges as indicators of tectonic and palaeoclimatic evolution of the Lufilian Belt, Neoproterozoic-Lower Palaeozoic of Central Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wendorff, Marek

    2010-05-01

    The Lufilian belt is an important segment of the Neoproterozoic-Lower Palaeozoic orogenic network within southern and central Africa. It deforms a sedimentary suite of the Katanga Supergroup (880-500 Ma). Mélange occurrences, traditionally called the Katangan breccias/megabreccias, are a prominent feature of the belt architecture. Some mélange bodies reach thickness of 2000 m and contain huge blocks of Katangan rocks. They were previously considered as tectonic mélanges ("friction breccias") marking regional decollement zones related to thrusting during the Pan-African orogenesis. However, these fragmental rocks were recently shown to be of sedimentary origin. They form two regionally extensive olistostrome bodies and one glaciogenic unit. The main lines of evidence for the olistostrome genesis are following: (1) lack of pervasive shearing that would point to tectonic fragmentation; (2) textures and structures diagnostic for subaqueous sediment gravity flows ranging from debris flows to turbidites; (3) roundness and provenance of clasts, and lateral facies gradients implying erosion, abrasion and unroofing of the Katangan source rocks elevated in the source areas; (4) lower boundaries of fragmental bodies are not tectonic but stratigraphic; (5) injections of unconsolidated conglomeratic matrix filling open joints in allochthonous blocks embedded in olistostrome lithosomes. The oldest mélange is a disorganised to locally organised syn rift olistostrome complex with olistoliths reaching 5 metres across. The clasts were derived from the uplifted rift margin and redeposition resulted from mass-wasting (rockfalls producing sedimentary breccias), sliding of solitary blocks, and pebbly to cobbly debris flows. The succeeding glaciogenic mélange complex originated during the Grand Conglomerat glaciation (correlative to the Sturtian glacial). It consists of disorganised clast-in-matrix facies that resulted from glacial erosion of the uplifted rift margin and

  18. Simultaneous Detection of Rift Valley Fever, Bluetongue, Rinderpest, and Peste des Petits Ruminants Viruses by a Single-Tube Multiplex Reverse Transcriptase-PCR Assay Using a Dual-Priming Oligonucleotide System▿

    PubMed Central

    Yeh, Jung-Yong; Lee, Ji-Hye; Seo, Hyun-Ji; Park, Jee-Yong; Moon, Jin-San; Cho, In-Soo; Choi, In-Soo; Park, Seung-Yong; Song, Chang-Seon; Lee, Joong-Bok

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this study was to develop a highly sensitive and specific one-step multiplex reverse transcriptase PCR assay for the simultaneous and differential detection of Rift Valley Fever virus (RVFV), bluetongue virus (BTV), rinderpest virus (RPV), and Peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV). These viruses cause mucosal lesions in cattle, sheep, and goats, and they are difficult to differentiate from one another based solely on their clinical presentation in suspected disease cases. In this study, we developed a multiplex reverse transcriptase PCR to detect these viruses using a novel dual-priming oligonucleotide (DPO). The DPO contains two separate priming regions joined by a polydeoxyinosine linker, which blocks extension of nonspecifically primed templates and consistently allows high PCR specificity even under less-than-optimal PCR conditions. A total of 19 DPO primers were designed to detect and discriminate between RVFV, BTV, RPV, and PPRV by the generation of 205-, 440-, 115-, and 243-bp cDNA products, respectively. The multiplex reverse transcriptase PCR described here enables the early diagnosis of these four viruses and may also be useful as part of a testing regime for cattle, sheep, or goats exhibiting similar clinical signs, including mucosal lesions. PMID:21307219

  19. Land - Ocean Climate Linkages and the Human Evolution - New ICDP and IODP Drilling Initiatives in the East African Rift Valley and SW Indian Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahn, R.; Feibel, C.; Co-Pis, Icdp/Iodp

    2009-04-01

    , and Interocean Exchanges"; IODP ref. no. 702-full) aims at deciphering the late Neogene ocean history of the SW Indian Ocean. SAFARI specifically targets the Agulhas Current in the SW Indian Ocean that constitutes the strongest western boundary current in the southern hemisphere oceans. The Current transports warm and saline surface waters from the tropical Indian Ocean to the southern tip of Africa. Exchanges with the atmosphere influence eastern and southern African climates including individual weather systems such as extra-tropical cyclone formation in the region and rainfall patterns. Ocean models further suggest the "leakage" of Agulhas water around South Africa into the Atlantic potentially modulates the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (MOC) with consequences for climate globally. The SAFARI drilling initiative aims to retrieve a suite of long drill cores along the southeast African margin and in the Indian-Atlantic ocean gateway. SAFARI will shed light on the history of Agulhas Current warm water transports along the southeast African margin during the late Neogene and its linking with ocean-climate developments. Specific objectives of SAFARI are to test (1) the sensitivity of the Agulhas Current to changing climates of the Plio/Pleistocene, including upstream forcing linked with equatorial Indian Ocean changes and Indonesian Throughflow; (2) the Current's influence on eastern and southern Africa climates, including rain fall patterns and vegetation changes; (3) buoyancy transfer to the Atlantic by Agulhas leakage around southern Africa, and (4) the contribution of variable Agulhas Leakage to shifts of the Atlantic MOC during episodes of major ocean and climate reorganizations of the past 5 Ma. These studies will provide insight into the Current's influence on eastern and southern African terrestrial climates, including its possible impact on the late Neogene evolution of large mammals including hominids. The ICDP and IODP drilling campaigns will

  20. Central Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province Cenozoic igneous activity and its relation in space and time with the Late Jurassic rift-to-drift-related alkalic dikes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, R.; Schultz, L.; Hendriks, B. W.; Harbor, D. J.; Connors, C. D.

    2011-12-01

    and particularly K-rich, and thus have all the characteristics of delamination magmas. This confirms that delamination seems a substantial process during the rift to drift transition. After Jurassic delamination of lithosphere below Virginia hot geochemically depleted asthenosphere was transformed into lithosphere by lithospherization. This newly formed lithosphere has later been the mantle source of the Cenozoic volcanic activity. As a result, the suggested geodynamic model is not only important to the petrology community but also to understand the local geomorphology, seismicity and presence of hot springs.

  1. Central Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province Cenozoic igneous activity and their relation in space and time with the Late Jurassic rift to drift related alkalic dikes.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, R.; Schultz, L.; Hendriks, B. W. H.; Harbor, D.; van Wijk, J.; Connors, C.

    2012-04-01

    . Petrogenetically the Jurassic magmas are much more alkalic and particularly K-rich, and thus have all the characteristics as described for delamination magmas by Kay & Kay (1993). This confirms that delamination seems a substantial process during the rift to drift transition. After Jurassic delamination of lithosphere below Virginia hot asthenosphere has been transformed into lithosphere by lithospheritisation. This newly formed lithosphere has later been the mantle source of the Eocene volcanic activity. As a result, the suggested geodynamic model is not only important for the petrology community but also to understand the local geomorphology, seismicity and hot springs.

  2. Continental Rifts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosendahl, B. R.

    Continental Rifts, edited by A. M. Quennell, is a new member of the Benchmark Papers in Geology Series, edited in toto by R. W. Fairbridge. In this series the individual volume editors peruse the literature on a given topic, select a few dozen papers of ostensibly benchmark quality, and then reorder them in some sensible fashion. Some of the original papers are republished intact, but many are chopped into “McNuggets™” of information. Depending upon the volume editor, the chopping process can range from a butchering job to careful and prudent pruning. The collecting, sifting, and reorganizing tasks are, of course, equally editor-sensitive. The end product of this series is something akin to a set of Reader's Digest of Geology.

  3. The East African rift system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chorowicz, Jean

    2005-10-01

    This overview paper considers the East African rift system (EARS) as an intra-continental ridge system, comprising an axial rift. It describes the structural organization in three branches, the overall morphology, lithospheric cross-sections, the morphotectonics, the main tectonic features—with emphasis on the tension fractures—and volcanism in its relationships with the tectonics. The most characteristic features in the EARS are narrow elongate zones of thinned continental lithosphere related to asthenospheric intrusions in the upper mantle. This hidden part of the rift structure is expressed on the surface by thermal uplift of the rift shoulders. The graben valleys and basins are organized over a major failure in the lithospheric mantle, and in the crust comprise a major border fault, linked in depth to a low angle detachment fault, inducing asymmetric roll-over pattern, eventually accompanied by smaller normal faulting and tilted blocks. Considering the kinematics, divergent movements caused the continent to split along lines of preexisting lithospheric weaknesses marked by ancient tectonic patterns that focus the extensional strain. The hypothesis favored here is SE-ward relative divergent drifting of a not yet well individualized Somalian plate, a model in agreement with the existence of NW-striking transform and transfer zones. The East African rift system comprises a unique succession of graben basins linked and segmented by intracontinental transform, transfer and accommodation zones. In an attempt to make a point on the rift system evolution through time and space, it is clear that the role of plume impacts is determinant. The main phenomenon is formation of domes related to plume effect, weakening the lithosphere and, long after, failure inducing focused upper mantle thinning, asthenospheric intrusion and related thermal uplift of shoulders. The plume that had formed first at around 30 Ma was not in the Afar but likely in Lake Tana region (Ethiopia

  4. Rapid Detection and Quantification of RNA of Ebola and Marburg Viruses, Lassa Virus, Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever Virus, Rift Valley Fever Virus, Dengue Virus, and Yellow Fever Virus by Real-Time Reverse Transcription-PCR

    PubMed Central

    Drosten, Christian; Göttig, Stephan; Schilling, Stefan; Asper, Marcel; Panning, Marcus; Schmitz, Herbert; Günther, Stephan

    2002-01-01

    Viral hemorrhagic fevers (VHFs) are acute infections with high case fatality rates. Important VHF agents are Ebola and Marburg viruses (MBGV/EBOV), Lassa virus (LASV), Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus (CCHFV), Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), dengue virus (DENV), and yellow fever virus (YFV). VHFs are clinically difficult to diagnose and to distinguish; a rapid and reliable laboratory diagnosis is required in suspected cases. We have established six one-step, real-time reverse transcription-PCR assays for these pathogens based on the Superscript reverse transcriptase-Platinum Taq polymerase enzyme mixture. Novel primers and/or 5′-nuclease detection probes were designed for RVFV, DENV, YFV, and CCHFV by using the latest DNA database entries. PCR products were detected in real time on a LightCycler instrument by using 5′-nuclease technology (RVFV, DENV, and YFV) or SybrGreen dye intercalation (MBGV/EBOV, LASV, and CCHFV). The inhibitory effect of SybrGreen on reverse transcription was overcome by initial immobilization of the dye in the reaction capillaries. Universal cycling conditions for SybrGreen and 5′-nuclease probe detection were established. Thus, up to three assays could be performed in parallel, facilitating rapid testing for several pathogens. All assays were thoroughly optimized and validated in terms of analytical sensitivity by using in vitro-transcribed RNA. The ≥95% detection limits as determined by probit regression analysis ranged from 1,545 to 2,835 viral genome equivalents/ml of serum (8.6 to 16 RNA copies per assay). The suitability of the assays was exemplified by detection and quantification of viral RNA in serum samples of VHF patients. PMID:12089242

  5. Rift initiation with volatiles and magma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ebinger, Cynthia; Muirhead, James; Roecker, Steve; Tiberi, Christel; Muzuka, Alfred; Ferdinand, Rrichard; Mulibo, Gabrile; Kianji, Gladys

    2015-04-01

    Rift initiation in cratonic lithosphere remains an outstanding problem in continental tectonics, but strain and magmatism patterns in youthful sectors of the East African rift provide new insights. Few teleseisms occur in the Eastern rift arm of the East African rift system, except the southernmost sector in northern Tanzania where extension occurs in Archaean lithosphere. The change in seismic energy release occurs over a narrow along-axis zone, and between sectors with and without volcanoes in the central rift valley. Are these differences in strain behavior indicative of along-strike variations in a) rheology; b) strain transfer from border faults to magma intrusion zones; c) dike vs fault slip; and/or d) shallow vs deep magma chambers? We present time-space relations of seismicity recorded on a 38-station array spanning the Kenya-Tanzania border, focal mechanisms for the largest events during those time periods, and compare these to longer-term strain patterns. Lower crustal seismicity occurs along the rift length, including sectors on and off craton, and those with and without central rift valley volcanoes, and we see no clear along-strike variation in seismogenic layer thickness. One explanation for widespread lower crustal seismicity is high gas pressures and volatile migration from active metasomatism of upper mantle and magma degassing, consistent with very high volatile flux along fault zones, and widespread metasomatism of xenoliths. Volatile release and migration may be critical to strength reduction of initially cold, strong cratonic lithosphere. Seismicity patterns indicate strain (and fluid?) transfer from the Manyara border fault to Gelai shield volcano (faulting, diking) via Oldoinyo Lengai volcano. Our focal mechanisms and Global CMTs from an intense fault-dike episode (2007) show a local, temporally stable, rotation from ~E-W extension to NE-SE extension in this linkage zone, consistent with longer term patterns recorded in vent and eruptive

  6. Mapping Mantle Mixing and the Extent of Superplume Influence Using He-Ne-Ar-CO2-N2 Isotopes: The Case of the East Africa Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilton, D. R.; Halldorsson, S. A.; Scarsi, P.; Castillo, P.; Abebe, T.; Kulongoski, J. T.

    2014-12-01

    Earth's mantle possesses distinct and variable volatile characteristics as sampled by magmatic activity in different tectonic environments. In general, trace element depleted mid-ocean ridge basalts, with low Sr and Pb isotope values (but high ɛNd and ɛHf), release mantle-derived noble gases characterised by 3He/4He ~8 ± 1RA, (21Ne/22Ne)ex ~0.06 and 40Ar/36Ar ≥ 10,000 with CO2 and N2 having δ13C~-5‰ and δ15N ~-5‰, respectively. In contrast, enriched intraplate lavas possess higher 3He/4He (up to 50RA), lower (21Ne/22Ne)ex ~0.035 and 40Ar/36Ar ≤ 10,000 with generally higher but variable δ13C and δ15N. These isotopic attributes of mantle-derived volatiles can be exploited to map the extent, and mixing characteristics, of enriched (plume) mantle with depleted asthenospheric mantle ± the effects of over-riding lithosphere and/or crust. The East African Rift System (EARS) is superimposed upon two massive plateaux - the Ethiopia and Kenya domes - regarded as geophysical manifestations of a superplume source, a huge thermochemical anomaly originated at the core-mantle boundary and providing dynamic support for the plateaux. We present new volatile isotopic and relative abundance data (on the same samples) for geothermal fluids (He-CO2-N2), lavas (He-Ne-Ar) and xenoliths (He-Ne-Ar-CO2-N2) which provide an unprecedented overview of the distribution of mantle volatiles of the Ethiopia Dome, from the Red Sea via the Afar region and Main Ethiopian Rift (MER) to the Turkana Depression. Notably, peaks in geothermal fluid 3He/4He (16RA) and δ15N (+6.5‰) are coincident within the MER but the maximum δ13C (-0.78‰) lies ~100 km to the south. Highs in 3He/4He (14RA), δ13C (~-1‰) and δ15N (+3.4‰) for mafic crystals occur in the Afar region ~ 500km to the north. We assess the significance of the off-set in these volatile isotope signals, for sampling volatile heterogeneity in the plume source and/or the relative sensitivity of different volatiles to

  7. Martian canyons and African rifts: Structural comparisons and implications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frey, H. V.

    1978-01-01

    The resistant parts of the canyon walls of the Martian rift complex Valled Marineris were used to infer an earlier, less eroded reconstruction of the major roughs. The individual canyons were then compared with individual rifts of East Africa. When measured in units of planetary radius, Martian canyons show a distribution of lengths nearly identical to those in Africa, both for individual rifts and for compound rift systems. A common mechanism which scales with planetary radius is suggested. Martian canyons are significantly wider than African rifts. The overall pattern of the rift systems of Africa and Mars are quite different in that the African systems are composed of numerous small faults with highly variable trend. On Mars the trends are less variable; individual scarps are straighter for longer than on earth. This is probably due to the difference in tectonic histories of the two planets: the complex history of the earth and the resulting complicated basement structures influence the development of new rifts. The basement and lithosphere of Mars are inferred to be simple, reflecting a relatively inactive tectonic history prior to the formation of the canyonlands.

  8. Protein Kinase R Degradation Is Essential for Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection and Is Regulated by SKP1-CUL1-F-box (SCF)FBXW11-NSs E3 Ligase

    PubMed Central

    Mudhasani, Rajini; Tran, Julie P.; Retterer, Cary; Kota, Krishna P.; Whitehouse, Chris A.; Bavari, Sina

    2016-01-01

    Activated protein kinase R (PKR) plays a vital role in antiviral defense primarily by inhibiting protein synthesis and augmenting interferon responses. Many viral proteins have adopted unique strategies to counteract the deleterious effects of PKR. The NSs (Non-structural s) protein which is encoded by Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) promotes early PKR proteasomal degradation through a previously undefined mechanism. In this study, we demonstrate that NSs carries out this activity by assembling the SCF (SKP1-CUL1-F-box)FBXW11 E3 ligase. NSs binds to the F-box protein, FBXW11, via the six amino acid sequence DDGFVE called the degron sequence and recruits PKR through an alternate binding site to the SCFFBXW11 E3 ligase. We further show that disrupting the assembly of the SCFFBXW11-NSs E3 ligase with MLN4924 (a small molecule inhibitor of SCF E3 ligase activity) or NSs degron viral mutants or siRNA knockdown of FBXW11 can block PKR degradation. Surprisingly, under these conditions when PKR degradation was blocked, NSs was essential and sufficient to activate PKR causing potent inhibition of RVFV infection by suppressing viral protein synthesis. These antiviral effects were antagonized by the loss of PKR expression or with a NSs deleted mutant virus. Therefore, early PKR activation by disassembly of SCFFBXW11-NSs E3 ligase is sufficient to inhibit RVFV infection. Furthermore, FBXW11 and BTRC are the two homologues of the βTrCP (Beta-transducin repeat containing protein) gene that were previously described to be functionally redundant. However, in RVFV infection, among the two homologues of βTrCP, FBXW11 plays a dominant role in PKR degradation and is the limiting factor in the assembly of the SCFFBXW11 complex. Thus, FBXW11 serves as a master regulator of RVFV infection by promoting PKR degradation. Overall these findings provide new insights into NSs regulation of PKR activity and offer potential opportunities for therapeutic intervention of RVFV infection. PMID

  9. Submarine thermal springs on the Galapagos Rift

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Corliss, J.B.; Dymond, J.; Gordon, L.I.; Edmond, J.M.; Von Herzen, R. P.; Ballard, Richard D.; Green, K.; Williams, D.; Bainbridge, A.; Crane, K.; Van Andel, T. H.

    1979-01-01

    The submarine hydrothermal activity on and near the Galápagos Rift has been explored with the aid of the deep submersible Alvin. Analyses of water samples from hydrothermal vents reveal that hydrothermal activity provides significant or dominant sources and sinks for several components of seawater; studies of conductive and convective heat transfer suggest that two-thirds of the heat lost from new oceanic lithosphere at the Galápagos Rift in the first million years may be vented from thermal springs, predominantly along the axial ridge within the rift valley. The vent areas are populated by animal communities. They appear to utilize chemosynthesis by sulfur-oxidizing bacteria to derive their entire energy supply from reactions between the seawater and the rocks at high temperatures, rather than photosynthesis

  10. Submarine thermal sprirngs on the galapagos rift.

    PubMed

    Corliss, J B; Dymond, J; Gordon, L I; Edmond, J M; von Herzen, R P; Ballard, R D; Green, K; Williams, D; Bainbridge, A; Crane, K; van Andel, T H

    1979-03-16

    The submarine hydrothermal activity on and near the Galápagos Rift has been explored with the aid of the deep submersible Alvin. Analyses of water samples from hydrothermal vents reveal that hydrothermal activity provides significant or dominant sources and sinks for several components of seawater; studies of conductive and convective heat transfer suggest that two-thirds of the heat lost from new oceanic lithosphere at the Galápagos Rift in the first million years may be vented from thermal springs, predominantly along the axial ridge within the rift valley. The vent areas are populated by animal communities. They appear to utilize chemosynthesis by sulfur-oxidizing bacteria to derive their entire energy supply from reactions between the seawater and the rocks at high temperatures, rather than photosynthesis. PMID:17776033

  11. Stratigraphy and rifting history of the Mesozoic-Cenozoic Anza rift, Kenya

    SciTech Connect

    Winn, R.D. Jr.; Steinmetz, J.C. ); Kerekgyarto, W.L. )

    1993-11-01

    Lithological and compositional relationships, thicknesses, and palynological data from drilling cuttings from five wells in the Anza rift, Kenya, indicate active rifting during the Late Cretaceous and Eocene-Oligocene. The earlier rifting possibly started in the Santonian-Coniacian, primarily occurred in the Campanian, and probably extended into the Maastrichtian. Anza rift sedimentation was in lacustrine, lacustrine-deltaic, fluvial, and flood-basin environments. Inferred synrift intervals in wells are shalier, thicker, more compositionally immature, and more poorly sorted than Lower Cretaceous ( )-lower Upper Cretaceous and upper Oligocene( )-Miocene interrift deposits. Synrift sandstone is mostly feldspathic or arkosic wacke. Sandstone deposited in the Anza basin during nonrift periods is mostly quartz arenite, and is coarser and has a high proportion of probable fluvial deposits relative to other facies. Volcanic debris is absent in sedimentary strata older than Pliocene-Holocene, although small Cretaceous intrusions are present in the basin. Cretaceous sandstone is cemented in places by laumontite, possibly recording Campanian extension. Early Cretaceous history of the Anza basin is poorly known because of the limited strata sampled; Jurassic units were not reached. Cretaceous rifting in the Anza basin was synchronous with rifting in Sudan and with the breakup and separation of South America and Africa; these events likely were related. Eocene-Oligocene extension in the Anza basin reflects different stresses. The transition from active rifting to passive subsidence in the Anza basin at the end of the Neogene, in turn, records a reconfigured response of east African plates to stresses and is correlated with formation of the East Africa rift.

  12. Sedimentology and depositional environments of the Red Sandstone Group, Rukwa Rift Basin, southwestern Tanzania: New insight into Cretaceous and Paleogene terrestrial ecosystems and tectonics in sub-equatorial Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, Eric M.; O'Connor, Patrick M.; Stevens, Nancy J.; Gottfried, Michael D.; Jinnah, Zubair A.; Ngasala, Sifael; Choh, Adeline M.; Armstrong, Richard A.

    2010-05-01

    The Red Sandstone Group (RSG) in the Rukwa Rift Basin of southwestern Tanzania represents one of the only well-exposed, fossiliferous Cretaceous-Paleogene continental sedimentary sequences in sub-equatorial Africa. The significance of the RSG for reconstructing the paleoenvironmental and paleoclimatic history of African ecosystems during these critical time periods has been obfuscated by long-standing confusion and debate over the age of the deposits. Detailed stratigraphic, sedimentologic, and paleontologic investigations of the RSG conducted between 2002 and 2008 have produced a wealth of new fossil discoveries and data on lithofacies, alluvial architecture, sedimentary provenance, clay mineralogy and geochronology that resolve the long-standing debate over the age of these deposits. This study confirms the existence of an extensive middle Cretaceous sequence, herein named the Galula Formation, and subdivided into the Mtuka and Namba members. Moreover, we document the existence of a previously unrecognized late Paleogene continental sequence termed the Nsungwe Formation, which is divided into the Utengule and Songwe members. The Galula Formation represents a 600-3000 m thick sequence of amalgamated, braided fluvial deposits that were deposited across a large braidplain system via multiple parallel channels that had their source in the highlands of Malawi and Zambia. The middle Cretaceous Dinosaur Beds of Malawi are hypothesized to be at least partially correlative with the Galula Formation, and represent proximal deposits of this large, northwest flowing, trunk stream system. A moderately diverse terrestrial vertebrate fauna, including multiple species of dinosaurs, crocodyliforms, turtles, fishes and mammals have been recovered, along with a sparse aquatic molluscan fauna. Lithofacies and clay mineralogy indicate that Cretaceous paleoclimate ameliorated during deposition of the Galula Formation, transitioning from tropical semi-arid to tropical humid conditions

  13. Precambrian rift: genesis of strata-bound ore deposits.

    PubMed

    Kanasewich, E R

    1968-09-01

    Study of deep seismic reflections has detected a Precambrian rift valley below flat-lying sediments in southern Alberta. The anomalous magnetic and gravity trends show that the rift is continuous across Alberta and British Columbia (through the Kimberley lead-zinc field) and possibly the Coeur d'Alene mining district of Idaho. There is evidence that these ore bodies were deposited in a Precambrian rift under conditions similar to those prevailing in the hot-brine areas of the modern Red Sea. PMID:17812797

  14. Mid-Continent rift system - a frontier hydrocarbon province

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, C.K.; Kerr, S.D. Jr.

    1983-08-01

    Geophysical evidence in the Mid-Continent has led to delineation of a rift system active during the Proterozoic Y Era. The Mid-Continent rift system can be traced by the Mid-Continent gravity high and corresponding aeromagnetic anomaly signature from the surface exposure of the Keweenawan Supergroup in the Lake Superior basin southwest in the subsurface through Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas. The aeromagnetic anomaly signature of the rift trend discloses where these sediments have been preserved. Thick accumulations of upper Proterozoic sediments are indicated by both upward continuation of the aeromagnetic profiles across the rift trend and gravity models which incorporate: 1) a deep mafic body to create the narrow gravity high, 2) anomalously thick crust to account for the more regional gravity low, and 3) sedimentary accumulations on the Precambrian surface to explain the small-scale notches which occur within the narrow gravity high. Reflection seismic data are virtually unknown in the rift area; however, data recently acquired by COCORP across the southern end of the feature in Kansas provide evidence of thick stratified sequences in the rift valley. Studies of the East African rift have revealed that the tropical rift valley is an exceptionally fertile environment for deposition and preservation of kerogenous material. The Sirte, Suez, Viking, Dnieper-Donetz, and Tsaidam basins are just a few of the rift basins currently classed as giant producers. The existence of a rift basin trend with thick accumulations of preserved sediments, demonstrably organic rich, introduces the northern Mid-Continent US as a new frontier for hydrocarbon exploration.

  15. Multiproxy Evidence for a Positive Hydrological Budget during the Little Ice Age in the East African Rift, Kenya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goman, M.; Ashley, G. M.; Hover, V. C.; Owen, R.

    2011-12-01

    Hominin evolution took place in Africa during the Plio-Pleistocene and climate change is thought to be a factor, with Africa experiencing a general cooling and increasing aridification over the last several million years. Today, the climate of the East African Rift Valley of Kenya is characterized as semi-arid with evapotranspiration four times precipitation. Water resources are a valuable commodity for the many millions of inhabitants of the Valley. The short instrumental record shows precipitation fluctuates at sub-decadal timeframes as a result of the ENSO cycle; while during prehistory variations in monsoonal precipitation occurred on Milankovitch timescales (i.e. African Humid Period). Both timescales exhibit significant impacts on the distribution of surface water. However, little is known regarding precipitation variability over sub-millennial timescales. Emerging paleoclimate data indicates that the near surface presence of water has also varied over century length timescales. We present paleoclimate data from multiple sites along a north-south 600 km transect of the Gregory Rift Valley (Kenya) that indicate the region experienced wetter conditions during the Little Ice Age (A.D. 1400-1850). Our reconstructions of landscape and climate during this time frame rely upon a multiproxy and interdisciplinary approach. We discuss data from a variety of environmental settings (e.g. lakes, wetlands, and springs) that indicate an overall increase in hydrologic balance. Evidence is derived from biologic microfossils such as pollen, diatom and testate amoebae assemblages as well as inorganic components of the sedimentary record and geomorphic changes. The data differs significantly from studies undertaken to the west in Uganda and the Congo, where negative hydrologic balances occurred during the Little Ice Age. While the atmospheric dynamics causing this disparity are not yet recognized, interactions between the Intertropical Convergence Zone and the Congo Air Boundary

  16. First early hominin from central Africa (Ishango, Democratic Republic of Congo).

    PubMed

    Crevecoeur, Isabelle; Skinner, Matthew M; Bailey, Shara E; Gunz, Philipp; Bortoluzzi, Silvia; Brooks, Alison S; Burlet, Christian; Cornelissen, Els; De Clerck, Nora; Maureille, Bruno; Semal, Patrick; Vanbrabant, Yves; Wood, Bernard

    2014-01-01

    Despite uncontested evidence for fossils belonging to the early hominin genus Australopithecus in East Africa from at least 4.2 million years ago (Ma), and from Chad by 3.5 Ma, thus far there has been no convincing evidence of Australopithecus, Paranthropus or early Homo from the western (Albertine) branch of the Rift Valley. Here we report the discovery of an isolated upper molar (#Ish25) from the Western Rift Valley site of Ishango in Central Africa in a derived context, overlying beds dated to between ca. 2.6 to 2.0 Ma. We used µCT imaging to compare its external and internal macro-morphology to upper molars of australopiths, and fossil and recent Homo. We show that the size and shape of the enamel-dentine junction (EDJ) surface discriminate between Plio-Pleistocene and post-Lower Pleistocene hominins, and that the Ishango molar clusters with australopiths and early Homo from East and southern Africa. A reassessment of the archaeological context of the specimen is consistent with the morphological evidence and suggest that early hominins were occupying this region by at least 2 Ma. PMID:24427292

  17. First Early Hominin from Central Africa (Ishango, Democratic Republic of Congo)

    PubMed Central

    Crevecoeur, Isabelle; Skinner, Matthew M.; Bailey, Shara E.; Gunz, Philipp; Bortoluzzi, Silvia; Brooks, Alison S.; Burlet, Christian; Cornelissen, Els; De Clerck, Nora; Maureille, Bruno; Semal, Patrick; Vanbrabant, Yves; Wood, Bernard

    2014-01-01

    Despite uncontested evidence for fossils belonging to the early hominin genus Australopithecus in East Africa from at least 4.2 million years ago (Ma), and from Chad by 3.5 Ma, thus far there has been no convincing evidence of Australopithecus, Paranthropus or early Homo from the western (Albertine) branch of the Rift Valley. Here we report the discovery of an isolated upper molar (#Ish25) from the Western Rift Valley site of Ishango in Central Africa in a derived context, overlying beds dated to between ca. 2.6 to 2.0 Ma. We used µCT imaging to compare its external and internal macro-morphology to upper molars of australopiths, and fossil and recent Homo. We show that the size and shape of the enamel-dentine junction (EDJ) surface discriminate between Plio-Pleistocene and post-Lower Pleistocene hominins, and that the Ishango molar clusters with australopiths and early Homo from East and southern Africa. A reassessment of the archaeological context of the specimen is consistent with the morphological evidence and suggest that early hominins were occupying this region by at least 2 Ma. PMID:24427292

  18. Generation of Continental Rifts, Basins and Swells by Lithosphere Instabilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milelli, L.; Fourel, L.; Jaupart, C. P.

    2012-12-01

    Domal uplifts, volcanism, basin formation and rifting have often struck the same continent in different areas at the same time. Their characteristics and orientations are difficult to reconcile with mantle convection or tectonic forces and suggest a driving mechanism that is intrinsic to the continent. The rifts seem to develop preferentially at high angles to the edge of the continent whereas swells and basins seem confined to the interior. Another intriguing geometrical feature is that the rifts often branch out in complicated patterns at their landward end. In Western Africa, for example, magmatic activity currently occurs in a number of uplifted areas including the peculiar Cameroon Volcanic Line that stretches away from the continental margin over about 1000 km. Magmatic and volcanic activity has been sustained along this line for 70 My with no age progression. The mantle upwelling that feeds the volcanoes is not affected by absolute plate motions and hence is attached to the continent. The Cameroon Volcanic Line extends to the Biu swell to the North and the Jos plateau to the West defining a striking Y-shaped pattern. This structure segues into several volcanic domes including the Air, the Hoggar, the Darfur, the Tibesti and the Haruj domes towards the Mediterranean coast. Another example is provided by North America, where the late Proterozoic-early Ordovician saw the formation of four major basins, the Michigan, Illinois, Williston and Hudson Bay, as well as of major rifts in southern Oklahoma and the Mississipi Valley within a short time interval. At the same time, a series of uplifts developed, such as the Ozark and Nashville domes. Motivated by these observations, we have sought an explanation in the continental lithosphere itself. We describe a new type of convective instability at the base of the lithosphere that leads to a remarkable spatial pattern at the scale of an entire continent. We carried out fluid mechanics laboratory experiments on buoyant

  19. Seismicity of the Earth 1900-2013 East African Rift

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hayes, Gavin P.; Jones, Eric S.; Stadler, Timothy J.; Barnhart, William D.; McNamara, Daniel E.; Benz, Harley M.; Furlong, Kevin P.; Villaseñor, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    Rifting in East Africa is not all coeval; volcanism and faulting have been an ongoing phenomenon on the continent since the Eocene (~45 Ma). The rifting began in northern East Africa, and led to the separation of the Nubia (Africa) and Arabia plates in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, and in the Lake Turkana area at the Kenya-Ethiopia border. A Paleogene mantle superplume beneath East Africa caused extension within the Nubia plate, as well as a first order topographic high known as the African superswell which now includes most of the eastern and southern sectors of the Nubia plate. Widespread volcanism erupted onto much of the rising plateau in Ethiopia during the Eocene-Oligocene (45–29 Ma), with chains of volcanoes forming along the rift separating Africa and Arabia. Since the initiation of rifting in northeastern Africa, the system has propagated over 3,000 km to the south and southwest, and it experiences seismicity as a direct result of the extension and active magmatism.

  20. Volcanic field elongation, vent distribution and tectonic evolution of continental rift: The Main Ethiopian Rift example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazzarini, Francesco; Le Corvec, Nicolas; Isola, Ilaria; Favalli, Massimiliano

    2015-04-01

    Magmatism and faulting operate in continental rifts and interact at a variety of scales, however their relationship is complex. The African rift, being the best example for both active continental rifting and magmatism, provides the ideal location to study the interplay between the two mechanisms. The Main Ethiopian Rift (MER), which connects the Afar depression in the north with the Turkana depression and Kenya Rift to the south, consists of two distinct systems of normal faults and its floor is scattered with volcanic fields formed by tens to several hundreds monogenetic, generally basaltic, small volcanoes and composite volcanoes and small calderas. The distribution of vents defines the overall shape of the volcanic field. Previous work has shown that the distribution of volcanic vents and the shape of a field are linked to its tectonic environment and its magmatic system. In order to distinguish the impact of each mechanism, we analyzed four volcanic fields located at the boundary between the central and northern MER, three of them (Debre Zeyit, Wonji and Kone) grew in the rift valley and one (Akaki) on the western rift shoulder. The elongation and shape of the fields were analyzed based on their vent distribution using the Principal Component Analysis (PCA), the Vent-to-Vent Distance (VVD), and the two dimensional symmetric Gaussian kernel density estimate methods. We extracted from these methods several parameters characterizing the spatial distribution of points (e.g., eccentricity (e), eigenvector index (evi), angular dispersion (Da)). These parameters allow to define at least three types of shape for volcanic fields: strong elongate (line and ellipse), bimodal/medium elongate (ellipse) and dispersed (circle) shapes. Applied to the natural example, these methods well differentiate each volcanic field. For example, the elongation of the field increases from shoulder to rift axis inversely to the angular dispersion. In addition, the results show that none of

  1. Mt. Elgon, Africa, Shaded Relief and Colored Height

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    The striking contrast of geologic structures in Africa is shown in this shaded relief image of Mt. Elgon on the left and a section of the Great Rift Valley on the right.

    Mt. Elgon is a solitary extinct volcano straddling the border between Uganda and Kenya, and at 4,321 meters (14,178 feet) tall is the eighth highest mountain in Africa. It is positioned on the Pre-Cambriam bedrock of the Trans Nzoia Plateau, and is similar to other such volcanoes in East Africa in that it is associated with the formation of the Rift Valley. However one thing that sets Mt. Elgon apart is its age.

    Although there is no verifiable evidence of its earliest volcanic activity, Mt. Elgon is estimated to be at least 24 million years old, making it the oldest extinct volcano in East Africa. This presents a striking comparison to Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa at 5,895 meters (19,341 feet), which is just over one million years old. Judging by the diameter of its base, it is a common belief among geological experts that Mt. Elgon was once the highest mountains in Africa, however erosion has played a significant role in reducing the height to its present value.

    Juxtaposed with this impressive mountain is a section of the Great Rift Valley, a geological fault system that extends for about 4,830 kilometers (2,995 miles) from Syria to central Mozambique. Erosion has concealed some sections, but in some sections like that shown here, there are sheer cliffs several thousand feet high. The present configuration of the valley, which dates from the mid-Pleistocene epoch, results from a rifting process associated with thermal currents in the Earth's mantle.

    Two visualization methods were combined to produce the image: shading and color coding of topographic height. The shade image was derived by computing topographic slope in the northwest-southeast direction, so that northwest slopes appear bright and southeast slopes appear dark. Color coding is directly

  2. Volcanics and structure of the famous narrowgate rift: Evidence for cyclic evolution: AMAR 1

    SciTech Connect

    Crane, K.; Ballard, R.D.

    1981-06-10

    A near-bottom photographic survey on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge from the FAMOUS region south to Transform B reveals structural and volcanologic evidence for an alternating widening and narrowing rift valley. Extension wedges appear to be propagating south from Transform A and north from Transform B. These merge at Mt. Mars, where the rift valley is narrowest and shallowest (Narrowgate), giving the valley a symmetrical hourglass shape. Three major volcanic en echelon lineaments trend N10 /sup 0/E, 10/sup 0/ oblique to the strike of the inner walls. Faulting and fissuring are antisymmetrical across the rift valley in contrast to the major extension. This contrasting antisymmetry reflects the surficial distribution of stress across crust of varying strengths, whereas the large-scale wedge phenomenon determines the periodicity of transition from a narrow valley to a wide valley. Using vector analysis, the extension wedges are propagating at about 9 cm/yr toward each other. At this rate a narrow rift valley will be fully transformed into wide rift in 0.64 m.y.

  3. U-Th disequilibria constraints on physical and chemical erosion processes and rates in soils from the Lake Natron-Lake Magadi (Gregory Rift Valley) drainage area vs hydrology/paleohydrology and bedrock lithology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hillaire-Marcel, Claude

    2015-04-01

    This presentation is a tribute to my former PhD student, the late Dr. Christian Goetz (1960-1991), who carried out intensive field and laboratory investigations on actinides in soils and sediments from lakes Manyara and Natron (Tanzania), and Magadi (Kenya) during his doctoral studies. Soils developed on granites from the Precambrian plateau, west of Gregory Rift, as well as those developed on the trachitic floor of the Rift yield nearly similar patterns, with U-leached (and Th-enriched) upper horizons vs source rocks. They differ from each other by i) the much higher [U]/[Th] mass ratio of soil over the granitic (~ 0.3) vs the trachitic (~ 0.1) basements (both near secular equilibrium), and ii) the greater decay of 230Th-excesses (230Thxs) in top soils over trachites, pointing to much older soils and/or lower leaching rates at the Rift floor. This difference seems related to the more arid conditions prevailing in the deeper part of the Rift. In contrast, soils developed on the basaltic walls of the Rift, characterized by abundant spring water from the basalt aquifer and a dense vegetation, depict a three-stage U-Th isotope evolution, with bedrock at near secular radioactive equilibrium and a [U]/[Th] ratio of ~ 0.2. It is overlain by a U-depleted horizon (with up to 75% relative losses in U), then topped by a low Eh, organic-matter rich layer, with evidence for a secondary uptake of U. The high 230Thxs observed in the U-leached horizon point to relatively fast U-leaching rates and/or "young" soil pattern. The present-day clays deposited in Lake Natron point to a Precambrian granitic plateau origin (through major rivers flowing eastwards towards the lake), whereas clay supplies from the rift escarpment basalts are carried with hydrothermal seepages towards Lake Magadi. U-Th measurements in early diagenetic minerals (phosphates) and clays (smectites) deposited during late Pleistocene high-lake levels (≥ 12 ka BP) provide robust constraints on source-rocks and

  4. The rheological behaviour of fracture-filling cherts: example of Barite Valley dikes, Barberton Greenstone Belt, South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ledevin, M.; Arndt, N.; Davaille, A.; Ledevin, R.; Simionovici, A.

    2015-02-01

    In the Barberton Greenstone Belt, South Africa, a 100-250 m thick complex of carbonaceous chert dikes marks the transition from the Mendon Formation to the Mapepe Formation (3260 Ma). The sub-vertical- to vertical position of the fractures, the abundance of highly shattered zones with poorly rotated angular fragments and common jigsaw fit, radial structures, and multiple injection features point to repetitive hydraulic fracturing that released overpressured fluids trapped within the shallow crust. The chemical and isotopic compositions of the chert favour a model whereby seawater-derived fluids circulated at low temperature (< 100-150 °C) within the shallow crust. From the microscopic structure of the chert, the injected material was a slurry of abundant clay-sized, rounded particles of silica, carbonaceous matter and minor clay minerals, all suspended in a siliceous colloidal solution. The dike geometry and characteristics of the slurry concur on that the chert was viscoelastic, and most probably thixotropic at the time of injection: the penetration of black chert into extremely fine fractures is evidence for low viscosity at the time of injection and the suspension of large country rock fragments in the chert matrix provides evidence of high viscosity soon thereafter. We explain the rheology by the particulate and colloidal structure of the slurry, and by the characteristic of silica suspensions to form cohesive 3-D networks through gelation. Our results provide valuable information about the compositions, physical characteristics and rheological properties of the fluids that circulated through Archean volcano-sedimentary sequences, which is an additional step to understand conditions on the floor of Archean oceans, the habitat of early life.

  5. Fault Orientations at Obliquely Rifted Margins: Where? When? Why?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brune, Sascha

    2015-04-01

    Present-day knowledge of rifted margin formation is largely based on 2D seismic lines, 2D conceptual models, and corroborated by 2D numerical experiments. However, the 2D assumption that the extension direction is perpendicular to the rift trend is often invalid. In fact, worldwide more than 75% of all rifted margin segments have been formed under significant obliquity exceeding 20° (angle measured between extension direction and rift trend normal): During formation of the Atlantic Ocean, oblique rifting dominated at the sheared margins of South Africa and Patagonia, the Equatorial Atlantic margins, separation of Greenland and North America, and it played a major role in the protracted rift history of the North East Atlantic. Outside the Atlantic Ocean, oblique rifting occurred during the split between East and West Gondwana, the separation of India and Australia, India and Madagascar, Australia and Antarctica, as well as Arabia and Africa. It is presently observed in the Gulf of California, the Aegean and in the East African Rift. Despite its significance, the degree to which oblique lithospheric extension affects first-order rift and passive margin properties like surface stress pattern, fault azimuths, and basin geometry, is still not entirely clear. This contribution provides insight in crustal stress patterns and fault orientations by applying a 3D numerical rift model to oblique extensional settings. The presented forward experiments cover the whole spectrum of oblique extension (i.e. rift-orthogonal extension, low obliquity, high obliquity, strike-slip deformation) from initial deformation to breakup. They are conducted using an elasto-visco-plastic finite element model and involve crustal and mantle layers accounting for self-consistent necking of the lithosphere. Results are thoroughly compared to previous analogue experiments, which yields many similarities but also distinct differences for late rift stages and for high obliquity. Even though the model

  6. Crustal Structure of the Ethiopian Rift and Adjacent Plateaus: Results of new integrated interpretation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tadesse, K.; Keller, G. R.

    2006-12-01

    The Ethiopian rift is the large part of the East African Rift system, which represents an incipient divergent plate boundary. This important structure provides excellent opportunities to study the transition from continental to oceanic. As a result, geophysical data are becoming increasingly available but some results are contradictory. We used a newly enhanced gravity database and seismic information to produce an integrated interpretation of the crustal structure beneath the Ethiopian rift and the adjacent plateaus. Wide regions have been covered to assess the regional structures including the Kenyan and Ethiopian rifts and the area covered by the Ethiopian flood basalt. Broad negative Bouguer gravity anomalies are delineated over the Ethiopian Plateaus and the Kenyan dome. Residual gravity anomalies, which parallel the major border faults clearly highlight the segregation between the plateaus and the rift valleys. Results of other filtering techniques have clearly revealed individual volcanic centers within the rift valleys. Positive gravity anomalies outside the rift valleys may be associated with older structures, shield volcanoes, or structures that are related to the initiation and propagation of rifting. A long axial profile from the central part of Kenya to the Afar triple junction has been modeled to investigate along-axis crustal variation of the East African rift system, with emphasis on the Ethiopian rift. This modeling has been constrained using seismic refraction data from the Ethiopian Afar Geoscientific Lithospheric Experiment (EAGLE) and Kenya Rift International Seismic Project (KRISP) results. We are able to see a thin crust (~26 km) in the Afar triangle with a gradual thickening (~40 km) southwards towards the Main Central Ethiopian rift (MER). The crust thickness decreases towards Turkana rift (~22 km), and increases again towards the central eastern rift section in Kenya. Our profile model across the MER has revealed that the eastern rift

  7. The rheological behavior of fracture-filling cherts: example of Barite Valley dikes, Barberton Greenstone Belt, South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ledevin, M.; Arndt, N.; Simionovici, A.

    2014-05-01

    A 100 m-thick complex of near-vertical carbonaceous chert dikes marks the transition from the Mendon to Mapepe Formations (3260 Ma) in the Barberton Greenstone Belt, South Africa. Fracturing was intense in this area, as shown by the profusion and width of the dikes (ca. 1 m on average) and by the abundance of completely shattered rocks. The dike-and-sill organization of the fracture network and the upward narrowing of some of the large veins indicate that at least part of the fluid originated at depth and migrated upward in this hydrothermal plumbing system. Abundant angular fragments of silicified country rock are suspended and uniformly distributed within the larger dikes. Jigsaw-fit structures and confined bursting textures indicate that hydraulic fracturing was at the origin of the veins. The confinement of the dike system beneath an impact spherule bed suggests that the hydrothermal circulations were triggered by the impact and located at the external margin of a large crater. From the geometry of the dikes and the petrography of the cherts, we infer that the fluid that invaded the fractures was thixotropic. On one hand, the injection of black chert into extremely fine fractures is evidence for low viscosity at the time of injection; on the other hand, the lack of closure of larger veins and the suspension of large fragments in a chert matrix provide evidence of high viscosity soon thereafter. The inference is that the viscosity of the injected fluid increased from low to high as the fluid velocity decreased. Such rheological behavior is characteristic of media composed of solid and colloidal particles suspended in a liquid. The presence of abundant clay-sized, rounded particles of silica, carbonaceous matter and clay minerals, the high proportion of siliceous matrix and the capacity of colloidal silica to form cohesive 3-D networks through gelation, account for the viscosity increase and thixotropic behavior of the fluid that filled the veins. Stirring and

  8. The rheological behavior of fracture-filling cherts: example from Barite Valley dikes, Barberton greenstone Belt, South Africa.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ledevin, Morgane; Arndt, Nicholas; Simionovici, Alexandre

    2014-05-01

    A 100m-thick complex of black carbonaceous chert dikes marks the transition from the Mendon to Mapepe Formations (3260 Ma) in the Barberton Greenstone Belt, South Africa. Fracturing was intense in this area, as shown by the profusion and width of the chert dikes (ca. 1m on average) and by the abundance of completely shattered rocks. Similar structures occur in many greenstones worldwide. Here we investigate (1) the origin of the dikes and (2) the nature of the material that precipitated to form the fracture-filling chert. The dike-and-sill organization of the plumbing system and the upward narrowing of some of the large veins indicate that at least part of the fluid originated at depth and migrated upward. Abundant angular fragments of silicified country rock are suspended and uniformly distributed within the larger dikes. Jigsaw-fit structures and confined bursting textures indicate that hydraulic fracturing was at the origin of the fractures, a particularity attributed to the confinement of the hydrothermal system below an impermeable cape of chert. The location of the dikes beneath an impact spherule bed leads us to propose that the hydrothermal circulation was related to the impact. The present site may have been located at the external margin of a large crater. The geometry of the dikes and the petrography of the cherts indicate that the fluid that invaded the fractures was thixotropic. The injection of black chert into extremely fine fractures is evidence oflow viscosity at the time of injection while the lack of closure of larger veins below eroded country blocks and the suspension of fragments in a chert matrix provides evidence of high viscosity soon thereafter. The inference is that the viscosity of the injected fluid increased from low to high as the fluid velocity decreased. Such rheological behavior is characteristic of media composed of solid and colloidal particles suspended in a fluid. The presence of abundant clay-sized particles of silica

  9. An Economic Valuation Of The Water Footprint: A Case Study Of The Citrus Sector In The Lower Sundays River Valley, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munro, S. A.; Fraser, G. C. G.; Snowball, J. D.

    2014-12-01

    With the implementation of the South African National Water Act (NWA) currently underway, water intensive sectors, such as the irrigated agriculture sector, can expect reduced water allocations and an increase in water prices. Water footprints (WFs) are increasingly being recognised as a meaningful way by which to represent human appropriation of water resources. This study examines the green and blue WFs of a variety of citrus cultivars in the lower Sundays River Valley, Eastern Cape, South Africa. WFs were calculated across dry, humid and long-term average climates and comparisons were made to available global average benchmark WFs. An number of indicators were also explored including; water productivity (ton/m3), economic land productivity (R/ha) and economic water productivity (R/m3) across all three climatic years. Most applications of WF sustainability assessments have focused on examining physical water scarcity as a measure for determining environmental hotspots. This study, therefore, also calculates the marginal product value for the irrigation water using a non-parametric linear programming approach. Marginal product value of irrigation water is not only useful in assisting with water-allocation decision making, but also useful in demonstrating the effects of resource depletion and degradation, and is therefore a useful measure for determining economic water scarcity. The study highlights that both farmers and governments could reduce blue WF's through adopting measures to increase water efficiency and considering economic water and land productivity. It also demonstrates the importance of including both environmental and economic scarcity indicators into water management and planning strategies, and the importance of conducting WF assessments using more accurate, site specific data.

  10. Westward drift, rift asymmetry and continental uplift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doglioni, C.; Carminati, E.; Bonatti, E.

    2003-04-01

    Although not predicted by classic plate tectonics theory, the topography of ocean ridges and rifts show a distinct asymmetry, when depth is plotted both vs. distance from the ridge and square root of the age of the oceanic crust. The eastern sides of the East Pacific Rise, of the mid Atlantic ridge, of the NW Indian ridge are in average more elevated than the conjugate flank to the west and eastern sides show slower subsidence rates. A similar asymmetry can be observed across the Red Sea and Baikal rifts. We suggest that depleted and lighter asthenosphere generated by partial melting below the ocean ridges shifts 'eastward' relative to the lithosphere, determining a density deficit below the eastern flank. The 'eastward' migration of the lighter Atlantic asthenosphere under the African continent, could eventually have contributed to the anomalous post-rift uplift of Africa and explain the anomalously higher topography of Africa with respect to other continents. This model suggests that the 'westward' drift of the lithosphere relative to the underlying mantle might be a global phenomenon and not just a mean delay.

  11. Latitudinal Hydrologic Variability Along the East African Rift, Over the Past 200 Kyr

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholz, C. A.

    2014-12-01

    Within the deep sediments of the large lakes of Africa's Great Rift Valley are continuous environmental records of remarkable antiquity and fidelity. Not only do stratigraphic sections from these basins extend back millions of years, many of the intervals represented contain high-resolution material of decadal resolution or better. East African lake basins remain sparsely sampled however, with only a few long and continuous records available. Our ability to image the lakes using seismic reflection methods greatly exceeds our opportunities for coring and drilling however; assessing stratal relationships observed in the geophysical data permits powerful inferences about past hydrologic changes. With intensive hydrocarbon exploration work underway in East Africa, industry well data can also help constrain and ground truth basin histories. Substantial spatio-temporal hydrologic variability is observed in East African basins over the past 200 kyr. Paleohydrological changes in the late Pleistocene and early Holocene are now well constrained in the northern hemisphere East African topics, with widespread aridity and in some cases lake desiccation observed during Heinrich Event 1. A climate recovery followed in the northern hemisphere East African tropics, with the early Holocene African Humid Period a time of positive water balance across most of the rift valley. The paleohydrology of southern hemisphere tropical East Africa is more equivocal, for instance with negligible draw-down of Lake Malawi at HE1. Whereas these late Pleistocene events represent substantial climate reorganizations, severe droughts during the middle-late Pleistocene (150-65 kyr BP) were far more intense, and produced much more severe drawdowns of Lakes Malawi and Tanganyika. Scientific drill cores, kullenberg cores, and extensive seismic reflection data sets from Lakes Malawi and Tanganyika provide indisputable evidence for lowstands of -500m and -600 m respectively. Climate changes that lowered the

  12. Seismic hazard assessment of the Kivu rift segment based on a new sismo-tectonic zonation model (Western Branch of the East African Rift system)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Havenith, Hans-Balder; Delvaux, Damien

    2015-04-01

    In the frame of the Belgian GeoRisCA multi-risk assessment project focused on the Kivu and Northern Tanganyika Region, a seismic hazard map has been produced for this area. It is based on a on a recently re-compiled catalogue using various local and global earthquake catalogues. The use of macroseismic epicenters determined from felt earthquakes allowed to extend the time-range back to the beginning of the 20th century, thus spanning about 100 years. The magnitudes have been homogenized to Mw and the coherence of the catalogue has been checked and validated. The seismo-tectonic zonation includes 10 seismic source areas that have been defined on the basis of the regional geological structure, neotectonic fault systems, basin architecture and distribution of earthquake epicenters. The seismic catalogue was filtered by removing obvious aftershocks and Gutenberg-Richter Laws were determined for each zone. On the basis of this seismo-tectonic information and existing attenuation laws that had been established by Twesigomwe (1997) and Mavonga et al. (2007) for this area, seismic hazard has been computed with the Crisis 2012 (Ordaz et al., 2012) software. The outputs of this assessment clearly show higher PGA values (for 475 years return period) along the Rift than the previous estimates by Twesigomwe (1997) and Mavonga (2007) while the same attenuation laws had been used. The main reason for these higher PGA values is likely to be related to the more detailed zonation of the Rift structure marked by a strong gradient of the seismicity from outside the rift zone to the inside. Mavonga, T. (2007). An estimate of the attenuation relationship for the strong ground motion in the Kivu Province, Western Rift Valley of Africa. Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors 62, 13-21. Ordaz M, Martinelli F, Aguilar A, Arboleda J, Meletti C, D'Amico V. (2012). CRISIS 2012, Program for computing seismic hazard. Instituto de Ingeniería, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de M

  13. Combining detrital geochronology and sedimentology to assess basin development in the Rukwa Rift of the East African Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilbert-Wolf, Hannah; Roberts, Eric; Mtelela, Cassy; Downie, Bob

    2015-04-01

    sedimentation. A distinct, upward-younging trend in detrital zircon populations associated with each stratigraphic interval suggests that volcanism was also episodic through the Late Miocene-Pliocene, and linked to periods of rifting and basin filling. Detrital zircon populations are dominated by Paleoproterozoic grains of the same age as the metamorphic Ubendian Belt that underlies the rift basin and forms the flanks. This provenance, volcaniclastic-dominated sedimentation, and clasts from the rift flanks suggest an internally draining basin and high rift flanks associated with the most recent rifting episode. There are also dominant populations of Neoproterozoic and Mesoproterozoic zircons, likely reworked from the underlying Cretaceous sandstones and derived from younger metamorphic terranes of the Ubendian Belt. Volcanic pulses associated with rifting are responsible for the young magmatic zircons, and suggest the initiation of a late Cenozoic rifting event, further constraining the timing of rifting and basin development in the Western Branch, as well as the timing of landscape change associated with erosion and uplift. Our dates additionally provide important temporal context for the rich vertebrate record described from the East African Rift, illuminating the tectonic backdrop of important large-scale faunal shifts in East Africa.

  14. An integrated geophysical study of the northern Kenya rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mariita, Nicolas O.; Keller, G. Randy

    2007-06-01

    The Kenyan part of the East African rift is among the most studied rift zones in the world. It is characterized by: (1) a classic rift valley, (2) sheer escarpments along the faulted borders of the rift valley, (3) voluminous volcanics that flowed from faults and fissures along the rift, and (4) axial and flank volcanoes where magma flow was most intense. In northern Kenya, the rift faults formed in an area where the lithosphere was weakened and stretched by Cretaceous-Paleogene extension, and in central and southern Kenya, it formed along old zones of weakness at the contact between the Archean Tanzania craton and the Proterozoic Mozambique orogenic belt. Recent geophysical investigations focused on the tectonic evolution of the East African rift and on exploration for geothermal energy in the southern portion of the Kenyan rift provide considerable information and insight on the structure and evolution of the lithosphere. In the north, a variety of other data exist. However, the lack of an integrated regional analysis of these data was the motivation for this study. Our study began with the collection and compilation of gravity data, and then we used the seismic refraction results from the Kenya Rift International Seismic Project (KRISP), published seismic reflection data, aeromagnetic data, and geologic and drilling data as constraints in the construction of integrated gravity models. These models and gravity anomaly maps provide insight on spatial variations in crustal thickness and upper mantle structure. In addition, they show the distribution of basins and help characterize the distribution of magmatism along the axis of the northern sector of the rift. Our main observations are the following: (1) the region of thinning and anomalous mantle widens northward in agreement with previous studies showing that the crust thins from about 35 km in the south to 20 km in the north; (2) as observed in the south, gravity highs observed along the axis are due to mafic

  15. Wetlands as a Record of Climate Change and Hydrological Response in Arid Rift Settings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ashley, G. M.

    2004-12-01

    Of all the terrestrial depositional settings, rift basins typically provide the greatest accommodation space, and consequently have some of the longest records of continental sedimentation. Lake deposits were the only rift component studied for records of long-term climatic change and for testing hypotheses of orbital forcing. Recently, the continuing quest for the paleontological and cultural records of human origins entombed in the sedimentary rocks of the East African Rift System raised questions concerning hydrologic and biologic response to climatic change. Additional issues are the impact of climate on paleolandscapes and the environmental stresses that might have affected human evolution. Other important indicators of rift hydrology, such as springs and wetlands are now emerging as viable records of climate change. Rift valley basins are shallow, hydrologically closed systems that are responsive to shifts in climate, and specifically sensitive to changes in the hydrologic budget (P-ET). Long term wet-dry cycles in the low latitudes are thought to be astronomically controlled, i.e. Milankovitch precession cycles (19-23 ka). In the tropics, precipitation (P) varies with changes in solar insolation which fluctuates <8-10 % over a cycle. Stronger insolation drives stronger summer monsoon maxima increasing P. Mean annual temperatures are high, but evapo-transpiration, ET (~ 2500 mm/yr) varies little. Consequently, during wetter periods regional groundwater reservoirs enlarge, the water table rises and springs and wetlands increase in number and in size compared to drier periods. Lake levels are known to fluctuate in response to change in hydrologic budget and wetlands appear to respond similarly. Springs and groundwater-fed wetlands are common, however the sources and sustainability of water or what geologic factors lead to the formation and longevity of wetlands is not well established. It appears that rainfall is trapped on topographic highs (rift fault blocks

  16. Anomalous deep earthquakes beneath the East African Rift: evidence for rift induced delamination of the lithosphere?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindenfeld, Michael; Rümpker, Georg; Schmeling, Harro; Wallner, Herbert

    2010-05-01

    The over 5000 m high Rwenzori Mountains are situated within the western branch of the East African Rift System, at the border between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. They represent a basement block within the rift valley whose origin and relation to the evolution of the EARS are highly puzzling. During 2006/2007 a network of 27 seismological stations was operated in this area to investigate crustal and upper mantle structure in conjunction with local seismicity. The data analysis revealed unexpectedly high microseismic activity. On average more than 800 events per month could be located with magnitudes ranging from 0.5 to 5.1. Hypocentral depths go as deep as 30 km with a pronounced concentration of activity at a depth of about 15 km. This presentation focuses on a cluster of seven earthquakes that were located at anomalous depths between 53 and 60 km. According to our present knowledge these are the deepest events so far observed within the EARS and the African Plate. Their origin might be connected to magmatic intrusions. However, the existence of earthquakes at this depth is enigmatic, especially within a rifting regime were one expects hot and weak material close to the surface, which is not capable of seismogenic deformation. We think that these events are closely related to the evolution of the Rwenzoris. A recent hypothesis to explain the extreme uplift of the Rwenzori Mountains is rift induced delamination (RID) of mantle lithosphere that is captured between two approaching rift segments. By numerical modelling we show that the RID-process is also able to bring material that is cold and brittle enough to release seismic energy into greater depth. Therefore the RID-mechanism gives a consistent explanation for the detected deep events as well as for the uplift of a mountain block in a rift setting.

  17. The role of inherited crustal structures and magmatism in the development of rift segments: Insights from the Kivu basin, western branch of the East African Rift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smets, Benoît; Delvaux, Damien; Ross, Kelly Ann; Poppe, Sam; Kervyn, Matthieu; d'Oreye, Nicolas; Kervyn, François

    2016-06-01

    The study of rift basin's morphology can provide good insights into geological features influencing the development of rift valleys and the distribution of volcanism. The Kivu rift segment represents the central section of the western branch of the East African Rift and displays morphological characteristics contrasting with other rift segments. Differences and contradictions between several structural maps of the Kivu rift make it difficult to interpret the local geodynamic setting. In the present work, we use topographic and bathymetric data to map active fault networks and study the geomorphology of the Kivu basin. This relief-based fault lineament mapping appears as a good complement for field mapping or mapping using seismic reflection profiles. Results suggest that rifting reactivated NE-SW oriented structures probably related to the Precambrian basement, creating transfer zones and influencing the location and distribution of volcanism. Both volcanic provinces, north and south of the Kivu basin, extend into Lake Kivu and are connected to each other with a series of eruptive vents along the western rift escarpment. The complex morphology of this rift basin, characterized by a double synthetic half-graben structure, might result from the combined action of normal faulting, magmatic underplating, volcanism and erosion processes.

  18. Rifting of Continental Interiors: Some New Geophysical Data and Interpretations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keller, G. R.

    2005-12-01

    Rifting is one of the major processes that affect the evolution of the continents. This process sometimes leads to continental breakup and the formation of new oceans, but more often does not. This is presumably due to extension not progressing sufficiently to form a new plate margin resulting in a structure, which remains isolated in an intra-plate environment. The Southern Oklahoma aulacogen is such a feature, and the continental portion of the East African rift system may be a modern example. As more detailed geophysical and geological studies of rifts have become available in recent years, a complex picture of rift structure and evolution has emerged. Global patterns that reveal the connections between lithospheric structure (deep and shallow), magmatism (amount and style), amount of extension, uplift, and older structures remain elusive. However, our geophysical studies of modern and paleo rifts in North America, East Africa, and Europe makes it possible to make some general observations: 1). Magmatism in rifts is modest without the presence of a (pre-existing?) thermal anomaly in the mantle. 2). Magmatic modification of the crust takes many forms which probably depend on the nature of older structures present and the state of the lithosphere when rifting is initiated (i.e. cold vs. hot; fertility), 3) There is no clear relation between amount of extension and the amount of magmatic modification of the crust. 4) Brittle deformation in the upper crustal is complex, often asymmetrical and older features often play important roles in focusing deformation. However on a lithospheric scale, rift structure is usually symmetrical. 5) A better understanding of rift processes is emerging as we achieve higher levels of integration of a wide variety of geoscience data.

  19. Stable isotope variation in tooth enamel from Neogene hippopotamids: monitor of meso and global climate and rift dynamics on the Albertine Rift, Uganda

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brachert, Thomas Christian; Brügmann, Gerhard B.; Mertz, Dieter F.; Kullmer, Ottmar; Schrenk, Friedemann; Jacob, Dorrit E.; Ssemmanda, Immaculate; Taubald, Heinrich

    2010-10-01

    The Neogene was a period of long-term global cooling and increasing climatic variability. Variations in African-Asian monsoon intensity over the last 7 Ma have been deduced from patterns of eolian dust export into the Indian Ocean and Mediterranean Sea as well as from lake level records in the East African Rift System (EARS). However, lake systems not only depend on rainfall patterns, but also on the size and physiography of river catchment areas. This study is based on stable isotope proxy