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Spread of avian influenza viruses by common teal (Anas crecca) in Europe.

Abstract : Since the recent spread of highly pathogenic (HP) H5N1 subtypes, avian influenza virus (AIV) dispersal has become an increasing focus of research. As for any other bird-borne pathogen, dispersal of these viruses is related to local and migratory movements of their hosts. In this study, we investigated potential AIV spread by Common Teal (Anas crecca) from the Camargue area, in the South of France, across Europe. Based on bird-ring recoveries, local duck population sizes and prevalence of infection with these viruses, we built an individual-based spatially explicit model describing bird movements, both locally (between wintering areas) and at the flyway scale. We investigated the effects of viral excretion duration and inactivation rate in water by simulating AIV spread with varying values for these two parameters. The results indicate that an efficient AIV dispersal in space is possible only for excretion durations longer than 7 days. Virus inactivation rate in the environment appears as a key parameter in the model because it allows local persistence of AIV over several months, the interval between two migratory periods. Virus persistence in water thus represents an important component of contamination risk as ducks migrate along their flyway. Based on the present modelling exercise, we also argue that HP H5N1 AIV is unlikely to be efficiently spread by Common Teal dispersal only.
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Camille Lebarbenchon, Frédéric Albespy, Anne-Laure Brochet, Viviane Grandhomme, François Renaud, et al.. Spread of avian influenza viruses by common teal (Anas crecca) in Europe.. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2009, 4 (10), pp.e7289. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0007289⟩. ⟨Pasteur-00457728⟩

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