Stochastic simulations of a multi-group compartmental model for Johne's disease on US dairy herds with test-based culling intervention

Zhao Lu, Ynte H. Schukken, Rebecca L. Smith, Yrjo T. Grohn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Infection elimination may be an important goal of control programs. Only in stochastic infection models can true infection elimination be observed as a fadeout. The phenomena of fadeout and variable prevalence are important in understanding the transmission dynamics of infectious diseases and these phenomena are essential to evaluate the effectiveness of control measures. To investigate the stochastic dynamics of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP) infection on US dairy herds with test-based culling intervention, we developed a multi-group stochastic compartmental model (a continuous time Markov chain model) with both horizontal and vertical transmission. The stochastic model predicted fadeout and within-herd prevalence to have a large variance. Although test-based culling intervention generally decreased prevalence over time, it took longer than desired by producers to eliminate the endemic MAP infection from a herd. Uncertainty analysis showed that, using annual culture test and culling of only high shedders or culling of both low and high shedders with a 12-month delay in culling of low shedders, MAP infection persisted in many herds beyond 20 years. While using semi-annual culture test and culling of low and high shedders with a 6-month delay in culling of low shedders, MAP infection in many herds would be extinct within 20 years. Sensitivity analysis of the cumulative density function of fadeout suggested that combining test-based culling intervention and reduction of transmission rates through improved management between susceptible calves and shedding animals may be more effective than either alone in eliminating endemic MAP infection. We also discussed the effects of other factors such as herd size, heifer replacement, and adult cow infection on the probability of fadeout.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1190-1201
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Theoretical Biology
Volume264
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2010
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Johne's disease
  • Stochastic modeling
  • Test-based culling
  • Uncertainty and sensitivity analyses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistics and Probability
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Applied Mathematics

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