Equine Herpesvirus (EHV) – Feb 25th, 13. 1. What is equine herpesvirus (EHV)? EHV are viruses that are found in most horses all over the world. Almost all horses have been infected with the virus and have no serious side effects. Equine Herpes Virus-1 is a contagious viral disease of horses that can cause respiratory disease, abortion, and occasionally neurologic disease. The neurologic equine herpesvirus (EHV-1) outbreak in the western United States has captured the attention of horse owners across the country and raised a few questions about just what this virus is and what it might do in this current outbreak.
The neurological form of equine herpes virus-1 (EHV-1) is a worrying disease for horse owners on several levels. The death rate among infected horses is concerning enough, but the highly infectious nature of the virus and an apparent marked growth in the number of cases in recent years have scientists working overtime to find a vaccine and medications that will improve survival rates. There are many types of Equine Herpesvirus (EHV) but the ones that affect the domestic horse are EHV-1, -2, -3, -4 and -5. EHV-2 and EHV-5 are found in most horses and rarely cause disease, although they have been associated with conjunctivitis and respiratory disease. There are five known subtypes in horses, but Equine Herpes Virus-1 (EHV-1) and EHV-4 are the two severest forms of the virus. EHV-3 is another type of major herpes virus, although it is normally associated with coital exanthema, a venereal disease that can be transmitted to horses.
Of all the infectious viral diseases recognized in horses, those caused by equine herpesvirus type 1 (EHV-1) (Fig 1) are among the most costly to the equine industry. Health Officials are continually monitoring for Equine Herpes Virus-1 cases. INFORMATION FROM THE HAWAII DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. ANIMAL INDUSTRY DIVISION. A multi-state outbreak of Equine Herpesvirus (EHV-1) has been traced to horses that attended the National Cutting Horse Association’s (NCHA) Western National Championships in Odgen, Utah, from April 30 to May 8, 2011.
Equine Herpes Virus-1
Equine Herpesvirus (EHV) is a viral disease of horses and other equidae. The disease can be caused by several different strains, but most commonly type 1 which causes respiratory disease, abortions, and/or neurologic disease, type 3 which causes coital exanthema, a venereal disease resulting in vesicles/pustules on the genital area of both male and female equidae, and type 4 which causes respiratory disease, especially in weanlings, but can rarely cause abortions, too.