Source Publication (e.g., journal title)
Human-mediated disease outbreaks due to poor biosecurity practices when processing animals in wild populations have been suspected. We tested whether not changing nitrile gloves between processing wood frog (Lithobates sylvaticus) tadpoles and co-housing individuals increased pathogen transmission and subsequent diseased-induced mortality caused by the emerging pathogen, ranavirus. We found that not changing gloves between processing infected and uninfected tadpoles resulted in transmission of ranavirus and increased the risk of mortality of uninfected tadpoles by 30X. Co-housing tadpoles for only 15 minutes with 10% of individuals infected resulted in ranavirus transmission and 50% mortality of uninfected tadpoles. More extreme mortality was observed when the co-housing infection prevalence was >10%. Our results illustrate that human-induced disease outbreaks due to poor biosecurity practices are possible in wild animal populations.
Gray, Matthew J., Jennifer A. Spatz, E. Davis Carter, Christian M. Yarber, Rebecca P. Wilkes, Debra L. Miller. “Poor Biosecurity Could Lead to Disease Outbreaks in Animal Populations.” PLOS One 13, no. 3 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0193243.