Spatio-temporal pattern of sylvatic rabies in the Sultanate of Oman, 2006–2010

Muhammad Hammad Hussain, Michael P. Ward, Mohammed Body, Abdulmajeed Al-Rawahi, Ali Awlad Wadir, Saif Al-Habsi, Muhammad Saqib, Mohammed Sayed Ahmed, Mahir Gharib Almaawali
  • Preventive Veterinary Medicine, July 2013, Elsevier
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.prevetmed.2013.01.001

Spatio-temporal pattern of sylvatic rabies in the Sultanate of Oman, 2006–2010

What is it about?

Rabies was first reported in the Sultanate of Oman is 1990. We analysed passive surveillance data (444 samples) collected and reported between 2006 and 2010. During this period, between 45 and 75% of samples submitted from suspect animals were subsequently confirmed (fluorescent antibody test, histopathology and reverse transcription PCR) as rabies cases.

Why is it important?

Overall, 63% of submitted samples were confirmed as rabies cases. The spatial distribution of species-specific cases were similar (centred in north-central Oman with a northeast–southwest distribution), although fox cases had a wider distribution and an east–west orientation. Clustering of cases was detected using interpolation, local spatial autocorrelation and scan statistical analysis. Several local government areas (wilayats) in north-central Oman were identified where higher than expected numbers of laboratory-confirmed rabies cases were reported. For fox rabies, more clusters (local spatial autocorrelation analysis) and a larger clustered area (scan statistical analysis) were detected. In Oman, monthly reports of fox rabies cases were highly correlated (rSP > 0.5) with reports of camel, cattle, sheep and goat rabies.


Mohamed Sayedahmed (Author)
Kafrelsheikh University

The best-fitting ARIMA model included a seasonality component. Fox rabies cases reported 6 months previously best explained rabies reported cases in other animal species. Despite likely reporting bias, results suggest that rabies exists as a sylvatic cycle of transmission in Oman and an opportunity still exists to prevent establishment of dog-mediated rabies.

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The following have contributed to this page: Mohamed Sayedahmed