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ISSN : 2287-7991(Print)
ISSN : 2287-8009(Online)
Journal of the Preventive Veterinary Medicine Vol.45 No.2 pp.57-62

Estimating the basic reproduction number for the 2019/20 African swine fever epidemics in wild boars in the Republic of Korea

Eu-Tteum Kim, Son-Il Pak
College of Veterinary Medicine and Institute of Veterinary Science, Kangwon National University


Since the first detection of African swine fever (ASF)-infected wild boar in October 2019, the ASF virus has been circulating among wild boars in the Republic of Korea. The priority for ASF control is to understand the epidemic situation correctly. The basic reproduction number (R0) can be used to describe the contagious disease epidemic situation since it can assess the contagiousness of infectious agents by presenting the average number of new cases generated by an infected case. The current study estimated R0 for the 2019/20 ASF epidemics in wild boars in the Republic of Korea using the reported number of ASF cases and a serial interval of the ASF virus. The estimated mean R0 was 2.10 (range: 0.06 – 10.24) for the 2019/20 ASF epidemics, 2.94 (range: 0.43 – 9.89) for the 2019 ASF epidemics, and 2.00 (range: 0.06 – 11.10) for the 2020 ASF epidemics. In addition, the estimated mean R0 was 3.82 (range: 1.16 – 8.78) in winter, 1.39 (range: 0.16 – 6.30) in spring, 4.82 (range: 0.26 – 17.08) in summer, and 2.21 (range: 0.51 – 5.86) in fall. Even though the Korean government has applied ASF control measures, including hunting or fencing, the ASF epidemic situation in wild boars has intensified. For ASF control in wild boars, tailor-made hunting, wild boar management, or active searching for carcasses are required to reduce the ASF virus. For ASF prevention in domestic pigs, no contact between wild boars and domestic pigs and a biosecurity plan by veterinarians are needed to decrease the risk of ASF virus transmission from wild boars to domestic pigs.