Prevention and control of zoonotic disease

Prevention and control of zoonotic disease


Dr. A.S. Bannalikar
Professor of Veterinary Microbiology
Bombay Veterinary College,
PAREL, MUMBAI – 400 012

The word ‘Zoonosis’ (Pleural: Zoonoses) was originally introduced by Rudolf Virchow in 1880 to include collectively the diseases shared in nature by man and animals. WHO in 1959 defined zoonoses as “those diseases and infections which are naturally transmitted between vertebrate animals and man”. Zoonoses include only those infections where there is either a proof or strong circumstantial evidence for transmission between animals and man. The zoonoses constitute nearly 60% of all known human infections and over 75% of all emerging infectious diseases. The Indian subcontinent has been identified as one of the four global hot spots at increased risk for emergence of new infectious diseases. In addition to being more vulnerable to emerging zoonoses, India has also contributed a major share of the global burden of other endemic zoonoses.

Historically, zoonotic diseases had a tremendous impact on the evolution of man, especially those cultures and societies that domesticated and bred animals for food and clothing. Zoonoses are among the most frequent and dreaded risks to which mankind are exposed. Zoonoses occur throughout the world transcending the natural boundaries. Their effect on global economy and health is well known, extending from the international movement of animals and importation of diseases to ban on importation of all animal products and restrictions on other international trade practices. The zoonoses thus are an international problem and for their effective control global surveillance is necessary.

Over the last two decades, there has been considerable change in the importance of certain zoonotic diseases in many parts of the world, resulting from ecological changes such as urbanization and industrialization. Most of the infections of man that have been discovered in last two...

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