Malignant catarrhal fever (MCF – AlHV-1, OvHV-2)

Malignant catarrhal fever (MCF) is a serious disease of ruminants, particularly cattle and farmed cervids.  It is caused by several viruses of the Herpesviridae family. The most common are the ovine herpesvirus (OvHV-2) and the wildebeest herpesvirus (AlHV-1).  Sheep and wildebeest are reservoirs of the virus and are infected without clinical signs, whereas other species can be infected through nasal and ocular secretions or faeces.


MVDr. Jitka Horníčková
+420 604 917 488


In cattle, the disease is manifested by anorexia, fever, dyspnoea, conjunctivitis, corneal opacity, salivation due to erosions on the tongue and oral mucosa, and neurological symptoms (dizziness, tremors, convulsions, etc.).  In cervids, which are more susceptible to infection than cattle, the intestinal form of infection (diarrhoea) and the peracute course are more common.

In Europe, AlHV-1 is only found in ruminants in zoos.

Samples suitable for PCR: whole blood, eye/nose swabs, organs (spleen, lymph nodes, lungs, brain...).

Molecular biology

RNDr. Alexander Nagy, Ph.D.
+420 770 118 897

Molecular biology

Ing. Lenka Černíková, Ph.D
+420 770 118 896

Information and Results

+420 251 031 704
+420 251 031 302


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