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Veterinary Medicine International
Volume 2013, Article ID 730367, 7 pages
Research Article

Bovine Tuberculosis and Brucellosis in Traditionally Managed Livestock in Selected Districts of Southern Province of Zambia

1Department of Disease Control, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Zambia, P.O. Box 32379, Lusaka, Zambia
2Dale Beighle Centre for Animal Health Studies, Faculty of Agriculture, Science and Technology, Private Bag X2046, Mmabatho, South Africa
3Department of Clinical Studies, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Zambia, P.O. Box 32379, Lusaka, Zambia
4Amimal Disease Diagnosis Project, School of Veterinary Medicine, Makerere University, P.O. Box 12162, Kampala, Uganda

Received 21 March 2013; Accepted 28 May 2013

Academic Editor: Timm C. Harder

Copyright © 2013 J. B. Muma et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A study was performed in 2008 to estimate the prevalence of tuberculosis and brucellosis in traditionally reared cattle of Southern Province in Zambia in four districts. The single comparative intradermal tuberculin test (SCITT) was used to identify TB reactors, and the Rose Bengal test (RBT), followed by confirmation with competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (c-ELISA), was used to test for brucellosis. A total of 459 animals were tested for tuberculosis and 395 for brucellosis. The overall prevalence of BTB based on the 4 mm and 3 mm cutoff criteria was 4.8% (95% CI: 2.6–7.0%) and 6.3% (95% CI: 3.8–8.8%), respectively. Change in skin thickness on SCITT was influenced by initial skin-fold thickness at the inoculation site, where animals with thinner skin had a tendency to give a larger tuberculin response. Brucellosis seroprevalence was estimated at 20.7% (95% CI: 17.0–24.4%). Comparison between results from RBT and c-ELISA showed good agreement (84.1%) and revealed subjectivity in RBT test results. Differences in brucellosis and tuberculosis prevalence across districts were attributed to type of husbandry practices and ecological factors. High prevalence of tuberculosis and brucellosis suggests that control control programmes are necessary for improved cattle productivity and reduced public health risk.