Sheep and goat pox (SGPX) are systemic transmissible viral diseases characterized mainly by skin and internal lesions. This work aimed to provide the first molecular detection of sheep pox virus (SPV) in Iraq. Sheep pox virus (SPV) is a widely spread skin viral disease in Iraqi sheep and is associated with the formation of benign and malignant lesions in adult and young animals, resulting in notable economic losses in sheep and goat. In the current study, 24 sheep pox samples were collected from sheep from central Iraq. These samples were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction, and sequence analysis. Sheep pox virus DNA was detected in 18 of the samples (75%) in Iraqi sheep as the main causative agent for the disease. A partial sequence for the SGP P32 gene was deposited in Gene Bank. Phylogenetic analysis confirmed the presence of SPV-Iraqi isolate and showed that the origin of infection may be imported from India, china and USA sheep. This study presents the first report of SPV-infection in the Iraqi sheep and gives to spreading the knowledge of the origin of this disease. The results of this study will assist in the development of appropriate prophylaxis procedures and therapeutic measures.
Sheep pox, Molecular, Phylogenetic analyses.
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