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Tuberculosis in Cattle

Nature volume 130, page 395 (10 September 1932) | Download Citation



THE eradication of tuberculosis from cattle herds is the subject of a recent article by James Mackintosh (J. Roy. Agric. Soc., vol. 92), who, besides describing the steps already taken in England and other countries to reduce the incidence of this disease, offers some practical recommendations as to how it may be more effectively stamped out. Although eradication by means of vaccines designed to confer immunity is still in the experimental stage, the testing and separating of reactors from non-reactors has met with success in northern European countries and seems to be the most hopeful method for adoption in Great Britain, Greater uniformity is, however, desirable in the application and interpretation of these tests. The measures taken under the Tuberculosis Order, 1925, to destroy all animals suffering from ‘open’ tuberculosis having failed to attain their object in time to be of real value, amplification of the order is recommended so as to ensure a general systematic inspection of cattle, by means of which tubercle-free beef and dairy herds may be built up, with a possible development in the future of definite ‘accredited’ areas. In this respect the Milk (Special Designations) Order has been of definite use by providing the only official recognition in Great Britain for herds which have been tested and contain no reactors. The practicability of such a scheme as that issued by the National Veterinary Medical Association is made evident and the cost, if shared by the State, the local authorities, and the farmer, should not be heavy, whereas the benefit to the cattle industry and the community in general would be very considerable.

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