Herpes virus OsHV-1 situation in Europe

Abnormal mortality events have affected Crassostrea gigas since 2008 in Europe and especially in France. Epidemiological investigations undertaken in 2009 and 2010 show that OsHV-1 μVar plays a major role in the mortalities.

To ensure a harmonised approach between Member States as regards measures to control this emerging disease situation Commission Regulation (EU) No 175/2010 “implementing Council Directive 2006/88/EC as regards measures to control increased mortality in oysters of the species Crassostrea gigas in connection with the detection of Ostreid herpesvirus 1 μvar (OsHV-1 μVar)” was adopted.

In 2011, a new Decision, ammending Decision 2010/221/EU as regards the approval of national measures was adopted for preventing the introduction of ostreid herpesvirus 1 μVar (OsHV-1 μVar) into certain areas of Ireland and the United Kingdom. This new decision is based on Article 43 of the Directive 2006/88/EC and approves surveillance programmes established by UK and Ireland.

In this context, the EURL assisted DGSanco to prepare the new regulation especially for the diagnosis and surveillance issues and to evualte results of the surveillance programme in place since 2010 in UK and Ireland. In February 2014, An Ad Hoc Technical working Group meeting was held at DG Sanco to evaluate EU legislation as regards OsHV-1 µvar.

The main objectives of this working group meeting were

 (a). Identify new scientific knowledge on OsHV-1 µvar and/or other relevant causal agents or cofactors relevant to limit the spread of this disease.

(b).   Evaluate the effect of current EU legislative measures as regards this disease.

(c).   Discuss possible legislative measures as regards this disease including an assessment on whether the disease should be listed in Part II of Annex IV to Directive 2006/88/EC or not.