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...and more -- see the avian & livestock test menu for a complete listing of avian and livestock assays.

avian & livestock assay data sheet

Lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV)

Test code:
- Ultrasensitive qualitative detection of lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV) by real time polymerase chain reaction


Lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV) belongs to the genus Capripoxvirus of the family Poxviridae. The virus is closely related antigenically to sheep and goat poxviruses. Although these three viruses are distinct, they cannot be differentiated with routine serological tests.

Infection of cattle with LSDV can result in significant morbidity. Although the mortality rate is generally low, economic losses are significant due to decreased milk production, abortion, infertility, loss of condition and damaged hides. Lumpy skin disease is endemic in Africa, but it has the potential to become established in other parts of the world.

The virus primarily infects cattle. Bos taurus breeds, particularly Jersey, Guernsey and Ayrshire, are more susceptible to clinical disease than zebu cattle (Bos indicus). A few cases have been reported in Asian water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis). Wild animals are not a major target for this virus.

LSDV is primarily transmitted by insects; it has been found in mosquitoes in the genera Aedes and Culex during some outbreaks. Transmission through direct contact is not common, but the virus has been found in cutaneous lesions, saliva, respiratory secretions, milk and semen. Viral DNA has been detected in the semen of some bulls for at least 5 months after infection. Experimental inoculation has been demonstrated with material from cutaneous nodules or blood, or by ingestion of feed and water contaminated with saliva. LSDV is very resistant to inactivation, surviving in desiccated crusts for up to 35 days, and can remain viable for long periods in the environment.

Diagnosis of LSDV infection has been accomplished by culture detection of the virus. Serological methods, such as ELISA or IFA, have been used to diagnose infections, but because of cross-reactivity with other poxviruses, interpretation of serological results may not be definitive. Molecular detection of LSDV by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a highly specific, sensitive and rapid alternative to the other methods (Sharawi and Abd El-Rahim, 2011


  • Help confirm the disease causing agent
  • Shorten time required to confirm a clinical diagnosis
  • Identify LSDV carriers
  • Help ensure that herds are free of LSDV
  • Early prevention of spread of the virus among animals
  • Minimize human exposure to the virus
  • Safety monitoring of biological products that derive from animals

Sharawi S.S. and Abd El-Rahim, I.H. (2011) The utility of polymerase chain reaction for diagnosis of lumpy skin disease in cattle and water buffaloes in Egypt. Rev. Sci. Tech. 30:821-830.

Specimen requirements: 0.2 ml whole blood in EDTA (purple top) tube, or 0.2 ml semen, or 0.2 ml saliva, or 0.2 ml lesion or crust material, or 0.2 ml fresh, frozen or fixed tissue.

Contact Zoologix if advice is needed to determine an appropriate specimen type for a specific diagnostic application. For specimen types not listed here, please contact Zoologix to confirm specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.

For all specimen types, if there will be a delay in shipping, or during very warm weather, refrigerate specimens until shipped and ship with a cold pack unless more stringent shipping requirements are specified. Frozen specimens should be shipped so as to remain frozen in transit. See shipping instructions for more information.

Turnaround time: 2 business days

Methodology: Qualitative real time PCR

Normal range: Nondetected

Lumpy skin disease virus PCR test

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