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Rinderpest Virus, Deadly in Livestock, Is No More, U.N. Says

In only the second elimination of a disease in history, rinderpest — a virus that used to kill cattle and wildlife by the millions — has been declared wiped off the face of the earth.

Rinderpest, which means “cattle plague” in German, does not affect humans, though it belongs to the same virus family as measles. But for millenniums in Asia, Europe and Africa it wiped out cattle, water buffalo, yaks and other animals needed for meat, milk, plowing and cart-pulling.

Its mortality rate is about 80 percent — higher even than smallpox, the only other disease ever eliminated.

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Comments (1)

  1. Hi I think it's a little early to say that. The last Global Rinderpest Eradication Programme report says that they finished the field work. The global declaration of erradication will be in may 2011. Two years after the last vaccine inoculated in cattle. See: http://www.fao.org/ag/againfo/programmes/en/grep/home.html http://www.fao.org/ag/againfo/resources/documents/AH/GREP_flyer.pdf Regards

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