African swine fever has killed a million pigs—and isn’t slowing down

The science behind the world’s deadliest swine disease.

When a herd of pigs in Cambodia’s Rattanakiri province crammed into a huddle, their pink ears tinged purple, it was too late. On March 22, the National Animal Health and Production Research Institute in Phnom Penh recognized the herd’s ailment as the country’s first confirmed cases of African swine fever. Within days, 400 animals fell to the contagion, hemorrhages corroding their organs. According to a report from Cambodia’s Ministry of Agriculture, the remaining 100 were killed.

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