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Elephan TB Serologic Test - Elephant TB STAT-PAK Update
Many of you may have received a letter from Dr. Kinker of NVSL regarding the availability of Chembio's Elephant TB STAT-PAK test.  To clarify, the 2003 USDA guidelines for testing elephants are still the current standard for testing and monitoring elephants (http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_welfare/downloads/elephant/tb2003.pdf).  However, the National TB Working Group for Zoos has been actively reviewing and revising these guidelines for the last couple years and have submitted these for scientific review to the US Animal Health Association's TB Committee.  It is expected that changes will be back and revisions made this spring. 
 
In the meantime, serological testing of elephants is VOLUNTARY and results are not required to be reported at this time.  Unless required in future revisions of the guidelines, it is at your discretion to have this testing performed.  However, if you choose to do so, a single serum sample collected at the time of the trunk wash samples is recommended.  Additional information on interpretation of results and further monitoring can be provided by the Elephant SSP Veterinary Advisory.  Other references are also available for understanding these tests (see list below).  Updates will be provided as they become available.
 
Please feel free to contact me with any specific questions.
Sincerely,
Michele Miller
Elephant SSP Veterinary Advisor
 
1.  Lyashchenko, K., Miller, M., and W.R. Waters.  2005.  Application of MAPIA (Multiple Antigen Print Immunoassay) and Rapid Lateral Flow Technology for Tuberculosis Testing of Elephants.  Porc. AAZV, AAWV, AZA/NAG Joint Confer.  Pp. 64-65.
2.  Lyashchenko,K., Greenwald,R., Esfandiari,J., Olsen,J.H., Ball,R., Dumonceaux,G., Dunker,F., Buckley,C., Richard,M., Murray,S., Payeur,J., Andersen,P., Pollock,J.M., Mikota,S., Miller,M., Sofranko,D., and Waters,W.R.  2006.  Tuberculosis in elephants:  antibody responses to defined antigens of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, potential for early diagnosis, and monitoring of treatment.  Clin. Vacc. Immunol. 13:722-732.
3.     Moller, T., Roken, B., Petersson, L. et al.  2005.  Preliminary Results of a New Serological Test for Detection of TB Infection (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) in Elephants (Elephas maximus and Loxodonta africanum):  Swedish case studies.  Verh Erkg Zootiere  42:173-181.
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