Original Research

Rinderpest : an historical overview : historical overview : Onderstepoort and veterinary research in Africa

P. Roeder
Onderstepoort Journal of Veterinary Research | Vol 76, No 1 | a53 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ojvr.v76i1.53 | © 2009 P. Roeder | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 September 2009 | Published: 10 September 2009

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P. Roeder,

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Rinderpest is one of the few diseases which have changed the course of world history. Originally an Asian disease, for centuries it had a devastating impact in Europe when introduced by returning and marauding armies accompanied by cattle as well as by cattle trade. Nowhere was its impact more dramatically expressed than in Africa where the sequel to its introduction into the Horn of Africa was a devastating panzootic throughout sub-Saharan Africa during the last decade of the 19th century extending into the 20th century. Massive deaths of livestock, wild animals and the people dependent on them led to widespread human misery and changed the face of the African continent forever.


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