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(LEAD) S. Korea reports first case of lumpy skin disease in cows at local farm

SEOUL, - South Korea on Friday confirmed the first-ever case of lumpy skin disease (LSD) in cows raised at a local farm, the agriculture ministry said.

The owner of the cattle farm in the western city of Seosan detected four cows showing symptoms of the disease Thursday and in-depth checkups by the authorities confirmed their infection, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

South Korea has not reported any LSD cases before.

Upon the report, the government cordoned off the farm and has been implementing quarantine measures, including culling about 40 cows there as a preventive step, the ministry said.

It also issued a 48-hour standstill order on all cattle farms and related facilities across the country from 2 p.m. Friday to prevent the spread of the disease.

As a highly infectious disease, LSD affects cattle and buffalo via mosquitoes and other blood-feeding insects.

It can cause skin lesions, fever, loss of appetite, a fall in milk production and can lead to death, though the disease does not pose any risk to humans.

South Korea, which established a diagnostic system in 2019, has designated the disease as a Class 1 infectious animal disease given its significant economic damage to farms.

Last year, it bought vaccines against the disease.

"The government will hold an emergency meeting to discuss plans of vaccinating livestock against LSD and other countermeasures," a ministry official said.

The disease was first reported in Africa back in 1929 and has spread widely, having been detected in more than 50 countries worldwide, the ministry said.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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