Trypanosomiasis poses a considerable constraint on livestock-agricultural development in tsetse-infested areas of sub-Saharan Africa. For various and complex reasons, many efforts to limit or eradicate trypanosomiasis have failed or have had limited success. However, in certain areas of West Africa, livestock production remains possible, despite the presence of tsetse fly, through the use of cattle and small ruminant breeds that are tolerant to the disease.
This paper provides an overview of the main features of the tsetse and trypanosomiasis (T&T) problem and the various options for its control. Emphasis is placed on the definition of the role of trypanotolerant livestock as an integrated approach to control the disease. The study provides a framework to determine where and under which circumstances trypanotolerant breeds may raise income from the livestock-agricultural-based activities of rural communities living in tsetse-infested areas. The paper concludes that trypanotolerant livestock form an integrated approach to T&T control and that their genetic traits are likely to continue to be exploited by farmers, both in low-input and market-oriented production systems.