The influence of cattle breed on susceptibility to bovine tuberculosis in Ethiopia

Martin Vordermeier*, Gobena Ameni, Stefan Berg, Richard Bishop, Brian D. Robertson, Abraham Aseffa, R. Glyn Hewinson, Douglas B. Young

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Bovine tuberculosis in domestic livestock such as cattle is an economically important disease with zoonotic potential, particularly in countries with emerging economies. We discuss the findings of recent epidemiological and immunological studies conducted in Ethiopia on host susceptibility differences between native zebu and the exotic Holstein-Friesian cattle that are increasingly part of the Ethiopian National herd, due to the drive to increase milk yields. These findings support the hypothesis that native Zebu cattle are more resistant to bovine tuberculosis. We also summarise the results of experimental infections that support the epidemiological data, and of laboratory experiments that suggest a role for the innate immune response, and in particular interleukin-6, in the outcome of bovine tuberculosis infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)227-232
Number of pages6
JournalComparative Immunology, Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Issue number3
Early online date01 Feb 2012
Publication statusPublished - 01 May 2012


  • Bovine tuberculosis
  • Holstein-Friesian
  • Innate immune responses
  • Susceptibility
  • Zebu


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