EHV-1: A Constant Threat to the Horse Industry

Fatai S. Oladunni, David W. Horohov, Thomas M. Chambers

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Equine herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1) is one of the most important and prevalent viral pathogens of horses and a major threat to the equine industry throughout most of the world. EHV-1 primarily causes respiratory disease but viral spread to distant organs enables the development of more severe sequelae; abortion and neurologic disease. The virus can also undergo latency during which viral genes are minimally expressed, and reactivate to produce lytic infection at any time. Recently, there has been a trend of increasing numbers of outbreaks of a devastating form of EHV-1, equine herpesviral myeloencephalopathy. This review presents detailed information on EHV-1, from the discovery of the virus to latest developments on treatment and control of the diseases it causes. We also provide updates on recent EHV-1 research with particular emphasis on viral biology which enables pathogenesis in the natural host. The information presented herein will be useful in understanding EHV-1 and formulating policies that would help limit the spread of EHV-1 within horse populations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2668
JournalFrontiers in Microbiology
StatePublished - Dec 3 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
FO was supported by grant from the American Quarter Horse Association Young Investigator Award and by a fellowship from the Geoffrey C. Hughes Foundation. This work was supported in part by a grant from the Equine Drug Research Council of the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. This work is a project of the Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station (KY014053), supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal Health Program.

Publisher Copyright:
© Copyright © 2019 Oladunni, Horohov and Chambers.


  • EHV-1
  • abortion
  • horse
  • latency
  • myeloencephalopathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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