African Swine Fever-Virus
(enveloped virus)

What is the African Swine Fever virus?

The African Swine Fever virus is a virus of the family Asfarviridae. It is an enveloped virus, which is further surrounded by a protein envelope and a second outer envelope. Infection of domestic pigs or wild boars with ASF viruses leads to African Swine Fever (ASF). Animals with ASF show pronounced but non-specific symptoms that are difficult to distinguish clinically from classical - European - swine fever. Acute cases of African Swine Fever are characterised by apathetic behaviour, loss of appetite, cyanosis, diarrhoea, and vomiting. The distinctive symptom of the disease is haemorrhages around the ears and snout.

For diagnosis, virus antigens or ASF-specific antibodies in the blood of the animals are detected.

Currently, there is neither a vaccine nor a therapy available against the virus. The infection is fatal most of the time. The infected pigs are culled to prevent transmission. In addition to the threat to livestock, the virus also poses a socio-economic danger. Due to the high risk posed by the African Swine Fever virus, it is a notifiable infection.

What disinfectants are effective against African Swine Fever virus?

The African Swine Fever virus is an enveloped virus. Its envelope contains glycoproteins and is a promising target for environmental influences. Disinfectants with at least the limited virucidal spectrum are required to inactivate the ASF virus. When choosing the right disinfectant, make sure that it is approved for use in the veterinary sector.

How is the African Swine Fever virus transmitted?

In the African countries of origin, the virus is mainly transmitted by leather ticks. In Central Europe, however, this transmission route is not relevant. Here, transmission occurs via direct contact with infected animals or by indirect transmission through contaminated surfaces, objects, or materials. Therefore, good basic hygiene is particularly important to prevent an outbreak of African Swine Fever.

The African Swine Fever virus cannot infect humans. However, humans can contribute to the spread of the virus - especially via contaminated surfaces.

» Necessary spectrum of antimicrobial activity
Virucidal against enveloped viruses

Enveloped viruses
The surface of enveloped viruses is covered with glycoproteins. These offer points of attack for external influences.

OIE Collaborating Centre for Zoonosen in Europe: “African Swine Fever”: African Swine Fever: Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut ( (accessed on 01/09/2021)

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