Ana Doménech Gómez

Ana  Doménech Gómez

I have a DVM and a PhD in Animal Health. I am a Professor at the Veterinary School at Universidad Complutense, Madrid. My research is mainly focused on animal viruses. I love teaching!


  • Thanks for the warning, Patricia. We will review this question and correct the error for future editions of the course.

  • Thanks for the warning, Inga. We will review this question and correct the error for future editions of the course.

  • That is an interesting question, Victoria. Both attenuated and inactivated FPV vaccines induce strong immunity in cats, and the vet must decide what type of vaccine to use and the best time to vaccinate a cat. Adult cats usually receive a single initial attenuated vaccine followed by another vaccine one year later. Vaccination of kittens is more complicated...

  • Interesting observation, Dawn.
    Indeed, some authors have linked the Old Testament plagues to viral diseases probably associated to an aberrant El Niño-Southern Oscillation. For ruminants, the most likely disease would be Rift Valley fever (caused by a Bunyavirus), as WNF affects equidae.
    You can find more information at: Ehrenkranz N.J., and Sampson, D....

  • Hi Victoria. The attenuated virus can cross the placental barrier during pregnancy and infect the fetus causing injury to the cerebellum. For that reason, attenuated vaccines should not be used during pregnancy.

  • You are right, Ibrahim. Attenuated vaccines should not be used in pregnant queens because of the risk of the placental virus passing into the fetus and damaging the developing cerebellum. For that reason, in many countries, only inactivated vaccines are licensed for use in pregnant queens.

  • Well done Aurora! Remember also the role that vehicules can play in vector manteince

  • Hi Chris
    It would be really difficult due to high variety of serotypes of bluetongue virus (you must inoculate in the same laboratory animal all the serotypes and repeat this protocol several times to be sure to obtain a high level of antibodies). Besides, this polyclonal would not be useful for serological tests because there would be many inespecific...

  • You are right Rufus. As other student, Jacki Hart, mentioned, these two imported cases of bluetongue ididn´t modified the status of UK respecting to this disease.
    You can find more official data in:...

  • Hi Chris
    The last official report for bluetongue in UK was in 2008. In the OIE web page (WAHIS system) you can find the complete list of notifiable diseases present in UK, and also, diseases never reported or absent in 2017.

    As other student,...

  • You are right, Jacki. These two imported cases of bluetongue infected cows didn´t modified the status of UK respecting to this disease.

  • This human disease is similar to FMD in animals, but it is a different illness. Its name is Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease, or HFMD, and is a contagious illness caused by different viruses. It is common in infants and children younger than 5 years old, because they do not yet have immunity (protection) to the viruses that cause HFMD. It causes fever, mouth...

  • Hello Paula. Your information is right, but remember we are looking for different examples of viruses transmission. Cryptococcus is not a virus, it is an invasive fungus which grows in culture as yeasts.

  • Hello Sofia. In fact, Hepatitis E virus belongs to Hepeviridae family (the name is very similar to Herpesviridae, but are really different viruses. The herpesvirus are enveloped virus, and you will learn more about them in week 6)

  • Hello Clara. In fact, Feline leukemia virus is a retrovirus. You will learn more about this virus and the disease it produces in week 6.

  • The control of avian influenza is based in official control measures, that include a policy of culling infected and contact animas in an effort to rapidly contain, control and eradicate the disease. When outbreaks are detected, stamping out is generally applied at the level of the infected farm or within a short radius around the infected premises in...

  • In fact, there is some risk that one of these diseases can enter into the UK if the vector is present . For example, the mosquito Culex that transmit West Nile fever virus was detected in 2010 in UK. You can find more information in this webpage:

  • Richard, you are right. One of the best ways to prevent the disease is practising good biosecurtiy measures in the farm. You can find more information about how to spot and report bluetongue in UK in this guidance:

  • Yes, you can advance in the other weeks before finishing the previous ones. The complete course is available at the same time.

  • Alba, don´t forget to reduce the risk of animals becoming infected or increase their resistence by vaccination.

  • The low level of viral replication in horses is not exactly the reason why the disease is not contagious between horses. The virus is not excreted by animals so it is only transmitted by mosquitoes bites.

  • I hope you get it!

  • Norovirus outbreaks after 2010 have been described in several countries;for example, Canada in 2016 and 2017

  • Gracias por la información, Albert. No conocía este estudio experimental. Posiblemente esa baja y corta viremia en perros hace que no tengan importancia epidemiológica para la enfermedad.

  • That is true. Some virulent Bluetongue virus strains (especially serotype 8 in cattle) can also be transferred through the placenta to the fetus. But this is not a significant mechanism of transmission, although it might be implicated in "overwintering" of the vector (this has not been sustained by experimental data). There are also serological data that...

  • Probably, but only if the environmental conditions allow mosquitoes to survive, and the number of virus-infected mosquitoes is so high that they bite horses and humans, besides birds.

  • Good question, Sharon. The first time that a pathogen infects a naive population usually produces severe cases of disease and even high mortality, because this population does not have a specific immunity against the pathogen. But in fact, that is also bad for the pathogen which cannot survive if it kills its host. For that reason, the severity of a disease...

  • Very interesting, Fiona. A lot to learn yet!

  • An exhaustive list of all the possible recommendations, Jaime!

  • I also found your brochure easy-to-follow

  • En el caso de Fiebre del Nilo Occidental en el sur de España, parece estar más relacionada con la presencia de aves migratorias, que son reservorios, que acuden a zonas de humedales como Doñana durante sus migraciones norte-sur. Además, hay varias evidencias de que el virus está circulando en aves autóctonas del país, ya que se han detectado tanto anticuerpos...

  • Yes, the presence of infected mosquitoes is essential for WNF outbreaks.

  • An excellent review of the data included en ArboNET!. As other database, ArboNET data have several limitations that should be considered in analysis and interpretation. You can read them in:

  • In my opinion, it is better to have surveillance programmes in wild or sentinel birds
    that allow the competent authorities to take appropriate measures to protect animals and people before the first cases of diseases appear. But probably these measures work better in endemic areas.

  • That is true. The improvement of molecular biotechnologies, including genome
    sequencing and proteomic analysis, and bioinformatics, have augmented
    the arsenal of tools amenable for virus discovery in recent years.

  • The presence of Aedes albopictus in an area automatically does not mean arboviral diseases cases. The diseases only appear if these mosquitoes are infected with an arbovirus.

  • Each arbovirus is adapted to a specific vector, in which the virus can overcome host tissue barriers and innate immune response and replicate in order to reach high viremia levels in saliva. Sometimes, arboviruses can accidentally infect new arthropods (for example, a mosquito Aedes that bites a sheep with bluetongue viremia), but if this arthropod is not...

  • VP7 is a structural protein that form trimers that are arranged in a ring-like struc¬tures for which the genus is named (orbi in latin means ring). Both VP2 and VP5 are attached to VP7, which in turn is associated with a subcore (or inner) shell composed of VP3 surrounding the transcriptase complex (VP1, VP4, and VP6), and the 10 genomic RNA segments. Also,...

  • And many of the diseases apparead mainly in poorer countries, as Fiona Byrne said.

  • You are right, John. Pesticide resistance is one of the main concerns on vector control.

  • Yes, probably mass immigration may be one of the human factosr associated with emergence of arboviral diseases in some regions.

  • The introduction of Aedes albopictus associated with trade in Dracaena plants ("lucky bamboo") is well documented and also, published in an scientific journal. Lucky bamboo is a water-based plant imported from Asia and female mosquitoes lay their eggs in this water.

  • All these data about Bluetongue reinforce its relevance and emergence worldwide.

  • Arboviruses are adapted to their reservoir host. They have developed strategies to to multiply inside the reservoir tissues without harming them. Moreover, there is a balance between virus replication in host tissues and the antiviral reservoir host response, which results in an controlled infection that is not eliminated and is not lethal.

  • To the best of my knowledge, there is not a specific name for parasites transmitted by arthropods. They are usually called as vector-borne diseases (for example, malaria or leishamaniasis).

  • In next steps we will learn that migratory birds are usually the key to understand some arboviral diseases outbreaks.

  • Nowadays, African Swine fever is one of the main concerns in Europa. You will probaby find out many more outbreaks of this diseases in the next months.

  • Well done, Anne! You have included all the relevant and important information to prevent the disease.

  • Dogs don´t suffer from WNF, so vaccines are not necessary. It would be a good idea to protect it against mosquitoes, as Michelle O´Brien says.

  • Los perros no se afectan por el virus aunque los pique el mosquito. Sí que hay que protegerlos de la picadura de mosquitos en general porque algunos transmiten enfermedades importantes (por ej, Leishmaniosis)

  • Los perros no se afectan por el virus así que no se recomienda vacunar. Y la vacunación en caballos sólo se emplea en zonas endémicas, en otras situaciones es mejor aplicar medidas preventivas y de disminución del riesgo de exposición a mosquitos.

  • Great idea, Terry.

  • Climate conditions are important, but there will be West Nile Fever in Crete only if infected mosquitoes are present.

  • El éxito de WNV puede deberse a que es un virus con un rango muy amplio de hospedadores y que puede adaptarse a muchos vectores distintos, lo que le diferencia de los otros virus que mencionas.

  • I haver never read anything about carbon dioxide levels as a factor for mosquitoes population.

  • There may be many factors involved in the different evolution of the disease in horses, humans, and birds, not fully understood yet. Probably, the host immune response, the virulence of viral strains, naive hosts... There is still much to know about this virus!

  • Moreover, West Nile virus has been adapted to several species of mosquitoes, which probably facilitate its spreading to new regions.

  • Arboviruses replicates in the vector tissues in order to amplify the number of viruses. After the infection of salivary glands, threre is an accumulation of virus in the salivary glands that eventually result in high viremia in the saliva. Then, the vector is ready to inoculate the virus along with the saliva to a vertebrate host!

  • The design of Bluetongue vaccines is difficult because the virus has 26 different serotypes that don´t induce cross immunity in vaccinated animals. So, viral strains in vaccines must vary according to the different viral serotypes present in an area.

  • Good job!

  • Good job!

  • Thanks for this information about your country!

  • Efectivamente, con la estacionalidad y lcon as migraciones de aves desde el norte a regiones templadas del sur

  • Good observation! In fact, it has been proposed that prevailing winds or climate events suchs as storms can be responsible for wind-borne dissemination of BTV-infected culicoides to long distances (for example, from North Africa to southern Europe)

  • And many ot them are zoonoses

  • Probablemente el clima de Venezuela favorezca la presencia de los vectores de estas enfermedades.

  • That´s true, Aurora. And similar to sheep movement.

  • Exactly, Anne. It cannot be rabies.