Lokesh Pagare, Dr. S. S. Mahour, Dr. Madhu Shivhare, and Dr. Archna Jain
College of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry NDVSU, Mhow (M.P.) India

Lumpy Skin Disease (LSD) is a contagious illness affecting domestic cattle, water buffaloes, and some wild ruminants.The illness is marked by a strong fever, swollen surface lymph nodes, and distinct lumps or nodules on the skin. LSD is a viral skin ailment transmitted through vectors, specifically impacting cattle and buffaloes. This is caused by Neethling virus, a member of Capripoxvirus genus of Poxviridae family and transmitted mechanically through arthropod vectors. It is spread by blood-sucking bugs like flies, mosquitoes, and ticks.It mostly impacts cows and, to a lesser extent, buffaloes.More cows get sick compared to buffaloes, and also affects young cows more than adults.In some cases, it can be fatal, particularly in animals without prior virus exposure or with low immunity, leading to death.However, the key point is that this disease doesn't spread from animals to humans. Animals, who are infected by these diseases might exhibit symptoms as early as 6–9 days, but its incubation period were reported to be 28 days.It has a detrimental effect on animal health, resulting in decreased weight, lowered milk production, pregnancy loss, and reduced fertility. Thus, affects the global cattle industry, causing significant financial losses.

Historical background of LSD
Lumpy Skin Disease (LSD) was initially identified in Zambia in 1929, initially assumed to be linked to poisoning or hypersensitivity to insect bites. Additional cases emerged in South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Botswana between 1943 and 1945. The first report of LSD to the Bangladesh livestock department occurred in July 2019. But, the major outbreak of this disease was observed in Pakistan in 2022. Similar outbreak was also reported in India during July to September 2022. Approximately 80000 cattle lost in India due to this disease. After Gujarat reported the initial cases, subsequent incidences were reported in Rajasthan, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Jammu Kashmir, and Andaman Nicobar. Rajasthan has recorded the highest number of deaths attributed to this disease.

How does healthy animal become infected?
Lumpy Skin Disease mainly spreads through arthropod vectors like mosquitoes, flies, and ticks, although specific vectors haven't been identified. However, specific vector was not specified to transmit the diseases. Animals can get infected by consuming contaminated saliva through food or water. This leads to various health changes, such as high fever, loss of appetite, weight loss, nose and eye issues, too much saliva, and lumps on the skin. These lumps are mainly found on the head, neck, limbs, udder, genitalia, and perineum.Big lumps can turn into scars that stay for months or even longer. Small lumps might go away on their own with no issues.

The harmful effects of LSD
LSD makes lumps grow in various sizes, usually around 1 to 3 cm wide and 1 to 2 cm deep. The number of lumps on the skin can vary from a few to hundreds, and they show up randomly. Mastitis, oedema developed on its limbs and other lower body regions, like the vulva, scrotum, dewlap, and brisket. This can make the animal not want to move much and may reluctant to move.The infection can make animals lose their appetite, have watery eyes, more nasal discharge, and produce less milk. Pregnant cows might have a miscarriage and not be ready to mate again for a few months. Infected animals may also lose their ability to have new born, either for a while or forever.The clinical severity of the cattle or specific breeds depends on the susceptibility and immunological status of the animals.

LSD virus infected cattle’s milk! Is safe to consume?
People are concerned about drinking milk from cows affected by lumpy skin disease. According to Ashok Kumar Mohanty from the Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI), it is safe to drink milk from cows with this skin condition, whether you boil it or not. Due to the category of zoonotic infection, cattle's milk could not become infected by the virus. People cannot get infected by animals. Thus, there is no health risk associated with milk consumption.Cattle don't cause infections in humans, and it's safe to include milk from cattle in the human food supply chain.

Treatment of LSD
Sadly, there's no specific medicine to treat lumpy skin disease. Infected animals get supportive care with antibiotics, painkillers, and wound care sprays to help with symptoms. Since there's no cure, vaccines are used to prevent the disease from spreading.Treatment for skin lesions, different anti-inflammatory medicines, and broad-spectrum antibiotics are effective against the growth of secondary infections. we can apply healing creams with fly repellent on the wounds and might give a solution of 0.1% Methylene Blue (1 gram of Methylene Blue powder in 1 liter of water) orally. Intravenous injection of Methylene Blue is also recommended at the dose rate of 10 mg/kg for 5-6 days.Liver tonics, appetite stimulants, immunomodulators, and antioxidants are also given as side therapy. An herbal preparation such as jaggery, and turmeric offers a supportive role in managing lumpy skin diseases.

Prevention and control
To stop the disease, the main things to focus on are controlling the bugs that spread it, putting limits on how animals travel, using strong quarantines, giving more vaccinations, providing good veterinary care, and keeping the farm really clean. The best medical protection is giving cows vaccines like Neethling strain or sheep/goat pox. Also, it helps to not let sick animals stay with healthy ones, keep them separate for a while, and be careful when they eat or drink in groups.

Future Perspectives and Prevention Strategies for Lumpy Skin Disease in Cattle
Lumpy Skin Disease (LSD) can spread through direct or indirect contact. Immediate initiation of nonspecific treatment is crucial upon identifying early symptomsto prevent the condition from progressing to a severe stage.Effective management of disease vectors, coupled with timely medication, facilitates healing.Nonspecific treatment includes broad spectrum antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs, methylene blue injection, multi-vitamins injection, immunomodulators and antioxidants along with herbal medications that will prevent growing wounds and boost immunity. Vaccination is recommended for cattle aged 3 months and older for proactive protection against the disease.

Lumpy Skin Disease (LSD) poses a significant threat to the global cattle industry, impacting the health and productivity of affected animals. Prevention strategies becomes imperative to mitigate the spread and minimize the adverse effects of this contagious illness in future. In conclusion, the future outlook for combating Lumpy Skin Disease in cattle relies on a multi-faceted approach that integrates advancements in research, vaccination, vector control, early detection, biosecurity, and international collaboration. By adopting proactive measures and staying abreast of emerging technologies, we can strive to create a more resilient and disease-resistant future for the global cattle industry.


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