Project overview : Epidemiology of zoonoses in slaughterhouse workers



This project is complimentary to the People, Animals and their Zoonoses (PAZ) project investigating endemic zoonoses in livestock and humans in western Kenya. The proposed study examined a subset of the human population of western Kenya, specifically slaughterhouse workers, for endemic and emerging zoonotic diseases. The major objective was to determine if slaughterhouse workers were more exposed to zoonotic disease in comparison to the general study population. The project was demand-led with slaughterhouse workers requesting information regarding their zoonotic disease risks.

Slaughterhouse workers are considered a high risk group for zoonotic disease due to increased contact with animals, animal products and excreta. There are multiple studies documenting outbreaks of zoonotic disease in slaughterhouse workers and the increased seroprevalence of zoonotic disease in this group, though no such studies exist in Kenya.

This study was conducted in western Kenya, 142 slaughterhouses were recruited into the study and 738 workers gave informed consent to participate in the study. Workers were interviewed regarding their health and practices in the slaughterhouse to identify risk factors for disease transmission. Biological samples (blood, stool and a nasal swab) were collected for analysis. Samples were analysed by ELISA for brucellosis, leptospirosis, Q fever, and Rift Valley fever. The ELISA results, together with the data collected during the interview was analysed to identify risk factors associated with seropositivity in slaughterhouse workers. Ongoing analysis will determine the carriage of MRSA and associated risk factors in slaughterhouse workers.

Expected publications in 2015 Dr. Annie-Cook - CopyBy Dr. Annie Cook




Annie’s work in investigating zoonoses among slaughterhouse workershas been highlighted on the CGIAR Development Dialogues blog




Collaborators and Funding

Collaborators: ILRI, KEMRI, University of Edinburgh

Funding: Wellcome Trust, MRC, A4NH


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