Canine Distemper Study

Canine distemper virus (CDV) is a typical disease in domestic dogs, which affects upper respiratory regions with or without numerous systemic signs and often followed by neurologic signs in some cases. This viral disease is constantly being detected in many other carnivores including wild canids (jackals, foxes) as well as felids (tigers, lions, leopards). The ability of the virus to quickly change and adapt themselves in various hosts makes it an important threat in one health perspective. Where: Bhaktapur Why: Jackals (Canis aureus) and leopards (Panthera pardus) are known to co-occur in the fringes of the human settlements on outskirts of Bhaktapur. The place is also abundant of stray/feral dogs population that roam freely. The interactions among these wild and domestic carnivores invite chances of spillover of various disease causing pathogens including CDV if present in either of animal groups. Thus, it is prudent to know epidemiology of CDV in such a scenario from both conservation and welfare point of view. How: Screening stray dog populations for CDV Noninvasive scat collection to screen CDV in wild carnivores Hemagglutinin (H) and Phosphoprotein (P) gene of CDV targeting about 200-500bp region will be amplified and sequenced. Phylogenetics analysis will be performed by comparing with sequences of various CDV strains from across the globe. Spillover dynamics will be analyzed and speculated based on results from phylogenetics analysis. Outcome: This study will help us understand the epidemiology and spillover dynamics of CDV among domestic and wild carnivores from one health perspective. Better understanding of CDV epidemiology in domestic and wild carnivores will help for proper action against this possible emerging threats for both wild and domestic carnivores.