Infectious bursal disease (IBD) is a highly infectious and contagious immunosuppressive viral disease of chickens with a worldwide economic significance to the poultry industry. Over fifty years have passed since the first confirmed occurrence of the disease, and the virus has spread all over world and evolved into multiple genetic, antigenic and pathotypic variants, becoming a serious threat to the poultry industry. The primary tool in IBD eradication is the maintenance of strict biosecurity in poultry farms and implementation of vaccination programmes which should take into account the current epidemiological knowledge about the IBDV strains circulating in the field. This review article presents the current state of knowledge about the infectious bursal disease virus (IBDV) with special regard to the molecular biology of the virus, immunological aspects, as well as current and future prevention strategies.
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