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Hematological and Biochemical Evaluation of Small Ruminants Naturally Infected with ORF Virus in Punjab Province, Pakistan
Irtaza Hussain1,2*, Muti ur Rehman Khan1*, Asim Aslam1, Masood Rabbani2 and Ahsan Anjum4

1Department of Pathology, Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore, 54000, Pakistan; 2Department of Pathobiology, Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, Bahauddin Zakariya University Multan, 60800, Pakistan; 3Institute of Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore, 54000, Pakistan, 4Department of Pathobiology, Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, MNS-University of Agriculture, Multan, Pakistan; *Corresponding author:,


The ORF virus causes contagious ecthyma in sheep and goats, which is an economically significant viral skin disease. The goal of this research was to observe the influence of ORFV on small ruminants’ hematological parameters as well as serum biochemical profiles across various districts of Punjab, Pakistan. In 58/441 animals, ORFV was confirmed by molecular analysis. ORFV lineages were classified into five separate groups based on phylogenetic analysis of the GIF/IL2 gene of Parapoxviruses. ORFV sequences from Pakistan isolates were grouped with viruses from China and India in Cluster I. In ORFV infected animals, hematological tests manifested mild to moderate leukocytosis, granulocytosis, severe neutrophilia and severe lymphopenia. Eosinophils, basophils, monocytes, thrombocytes, red blood cells (RBC), mean corpuscular volume (MCV), mean corpuscular hemoglobin (MCH) and mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC) were not influenced statistically (P>0.05). Infected animals had significantly higher (P<0.05) alanine transaminase (ALT) and albumin to globulin (A/G) ratios when serum biochemical parameters were assessed. Total protein, albumin, globulin, creatinine and urea all indicated a significant decline (P<0.05) in the analysis of data. Bilirubin, aspartate aminotransferase (AST), and alkaline phosphatase (ALP), on the other hand, did not differ significantly (P>0.05). On the lateral commissure of the lips, muzzle, and nostrils of ORFV infected animals, diffused papular and pustular lesions as well as scab formation were visible. Microscopic investigations revealed acanthosis, parakeratosis with micro abscess zones, hyperkeratosis, spongiosis, epithelial cell degeneration, necrotic foci with patches of inflammatory cell aggregation and intracytoplasmic eosinophilic inclusion body in keratinocytes. It may be inferred that the ORFV had a considerable impact on sheep and goats hematological and serum biochemical parameters. The findings helped in the comprehension of disease mechanisms and controlling the infection.

To Cite This Article: Hussain I, Khan MUR, Aslam A, Rabbani M, Anjum A, 2022. Hematological and biochemical evaluation of small ruminants naturally infected with ORF virus in Punjab Province, Pakistan. Pak Vet J, 42(4): 540-546.  


ISSN 0253-8318 (Print)
ISSN 2074-7764 (Online)