Seroprevalence of brucellosis in goats and sheep in Thailand: Results from the Thai National Brucellosis Surveillance System from 2013 to 2015

Research paper by M. E. Peck, K. Chanachai, C. Jenpanich, A. Amonsin, B. H. Alexander, J. B. Bender

Indexed on: 28 Feb '18Published on: 19 Feb '18Published in: Transboundary and Emerging Diseases


In Thailand, brucellosis re-emerged in humans in 2003 and is considered a public health risk to goat farmers as the disease is endemic in small ruminants. The Thai Department of Livestock Development (DLD) established a nationwide surveillance system for brucellosis in goats and sheep in 1997. Using data from this surveillance system, we describe the seroprevalence of brucellosis from 2013 to 2015 in small ruminants and the spatial distribution of the disease throughout Thailand. Surveillance data collected included the number of animals and herds tested, the province of the animal and herd and the laboratory results. Seroprevalence was estimated at both the animal and herd levels. During the 3-year period, 443,561 goats and sheep were tested for brucellosis by the DLD throughout Thailand using the Rose Bengal Plate Test (RBPT) and the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test for Brucella. Among the 3 years, 2013 had the highest proportion of herds that tested positive for brucellosis at 13.80% (95% CI, 12.52, 15.16). Overall, this study found that brucellosis seroprevalence in small ruminants is decreasing throughout Thailand. However, there is variability in the spread of the disease with provinces in the eastern and western regions of Thailand having higher proportions of animals and herds testing positive. Overall provinces in the south had the lowest proportion of animals and herds testing positive for brucellosis. Periodic review of surveillance data documents the impact of the current brucellosis control programme and supports a targeted response in higher prevalence regions when there are limited financial resources for control measures.