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Serological survey of Mycoplasma gallisepticum infection in layer chickens in the Ga-east District of the greater Accra region
Mycoplasma gallisepticum (MG) is among the most economically significant avian Mycoplas-mas, causing chronic respiratory diseases in chickens. Limited knowledge exists about this pathogen in the poultry industry in Ghana. This study was carried out to investigate the preva-lence of MG infection in commercial layer chickens in the Ga East district of the Greater Accra region of Ghana from March – October, 2010. A total of seven hundred and nineteen (719) ap-parently healthy individual chicken sera were collected from forty-nine (49) layer flocks. The Serum Plate Agglutination (SPA) test using Nobilis® MG antigen obtained from Intevert Inter-national, Boxmeer-Holland, was used to test sera for the presence of antibodies. The overall sero-prevalence of MG was found to be 59.1%. Sero-prevalence of MG was high in all the different age groups (18-75 weeks). Infection was significantly higher (X2 = 202.8, p<0.00000) in older birds (100.0%) than younger birds (15.6%). Sero-prevalence was again found to be significantly (X2 = 26.5, p< 0.00001) higher in larger flock sizes (81.3%) than smaller flock sizes (50.9%). These findings indicate a high MG seroprevalence in layer chickens in the Ga East district of the Greater Accra region. There is the need for the development of preventive and control strategies to help reduce MG infection.