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Anthrax Pathogen Contamination


Evaluating Spatial Trends of Anthrax Pathogen Contamination in Russian Field (extension of Project #637, Part 2).

Tech Area / Field

  • BIO-MIB/Microbiology/Biotechnology
  • MED-DIS/Disease Surveillance/Medicine

8 Project completed

Registration date

Completion date

Senior Project Manager
Gremyakova T A

Leading Institute
Central Research Institute of Epidemioloigy, Russia, Moscow

Project summary

01 December 1999 ends a first stage of Project № 637-97 "Evaluation Spatial Trends of Anthrax Pathogen Contamination in Russian Field”. Main will take aim was a making a Cadastre, contain information on all famous for last more than 100 years anthrax sites of Russia Federations. This work is successfully executed on all points of the working plan.

In the course of performing a Project become obvious, that the received information vastly exceeds those,was stipulate at the beginning of initially work.

Preliminary results of work were presented on scientific conferences (Plymouth, Great Britain, 7-11 September, 1998г.; Kruger-park, South Africa, 9-15 August, 1998) and on the working counsel with the american collaborators (University of the state of Louisiana, 20-24 March, 1998).

Discussion Participants (Andrew Weber, Pentagon, USA; Frederick A. Murphy, University of California, USA; David A.Ashford, CDC, USA; Stephen S.Morse, DARPA/DSO, USA; Chris Whalley, ERDEC, USA; Arnold Kaufmann, CDC, USA) reach a conclusion, that results of studies, conduct within the framework of the Project №637, be of global importance. In this connection was voice opinion on practicability of organizations of work on the second stage of Project, in the course of which must be created Geoinformation System an anthrax.

The initial project funded by International Technical and Scientific Center in Moscow included resources for assembling a reference handbook detailing anthrax distribution and more than 35,000 highlighting sights which persistently show the disease over the past 100 years . Anthrax is endemic throughout Russia. According to the known statistical data from the beginning and the first half of the century anthrax was a widespread disease in the country. It was followed by formation of a rather high number of stable anthrax soil foci, but the names and locations of a number of these were lost over the years. Nevertheless, significant numbers of anthrax stationary unfavourable sites are registered. Some of them were indicated before 1900.

In the former USSR a strong system of anthrax site surveillance was established. Detection and registration of anthrax foci is obligatory, every case and every anthrax outbreak in animals as well as in human beings must be reported. To make this system more robust both the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Health of the former USSR implemented common rules. According to these rules the veterinary and sanitary-epidemiological services in every district must together inspect, assess, register and record each historic and contemporary anthrax site on their territory. At present the same system exists in Russia as well as in all the republics of the former USSR.

The above system makes it possible to assemble and to develop an extensive database of known anthrax sites all over the territory of Russia including names of villages, agricultural council, district, oblast and years of occurrence of anthrax cases. This was done by Central Research Institute of Epidemiology together with the All-Russian Institute of Experimental Veterinary Medicine and the Pokrov Biological Plant.

Implementation of the project result in the obtaining of a reference handbook "Register of Stationary Anthrax Sites in the Russian Federation" containing organized information on more than 35,000 anthrax sites occurring over the past 100 years.

Analysis of such information makes it possible to identify regions characterized by different concentrations of anthrax sites in Russia, different risk locations (i.e. high risk of persistent infection, high risk of sporadic occurrence, low risk areas, etc.) in terms of anthrax and the trends in expressed emergence of the disease.

Unfortunately, the initial project budget only allows the data to be collected and assembled in tabular form. It is essential to produce customized maps. In order to properly raise the value of this work in terms of wider communication and spatial analysis.

This project would allow the incorporation of powerful Geographic Information System (GIS) electronic mapping technology so that natural geographic features such as soil type and climate can be compared with anthrax distributions in Russia using standard GIS and statistical analysis.

In Stavropol and Saratov antiplague institutes will be studied the biological and genetic peculiarities of B. Anthracis isolates from some parts of Russian Federation.


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