Hydropericardium-hepatitis syndrome, Biology

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Hydropericardium-hepatitis syndrome

Also known as 'Angara disease' or 'leachy heart disease', this complex illness of poultry spread rapidly in the last decade in broiler producing areas in several countries including India. It affects mainly fast growing broilers. It is a condition caused by an adenovirus, possibly in combination with an RNA virus and immunosuppression caused by chicken anaemia virus or IBD. The disease is readily reproduced by inoculating birds with a bacteria-free filtrate of a liver extract from an affected bird. Mortality may be as high as 60% but more typically 10-30%.

Symptoms and lesions: Depressions, sudden increase in mortality, huddling with ruffled feathers, white or yellowish diarrhea are the important symptoms. PM lesions include excessive straw-coloured fluid in the pericardium giving distended leachy heart appearance. The notable lesions are enlarged, pale friable liver and kidney, edematous lungs and in some cases ascites.

Diagnosis: Symptoms and lesions are indicative of the disease; virus isolation can be made in susceptible host system.

Prevention and control: The condition typically occurs in areas of high poultry density where multi-age operation is traditional. Control of predisposing immunosuppressive diseases may help limit losses.


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