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Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 in skunks, Canada.

Emerging Infectious Diseases (Impact Factor: 7.33). 06/2010; 16(6):1043-5. DOI: 10.3201/eid1606.100352
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Cottontails (Sylvilagus spp.) are common mammals throughout much of the U.S. and are often found in peridomestic settings, potentially interacting with livestock and poultry operations. If these animals are susceptible to avian influenza virus (AIV) infections and shed the virus in sufficient quantities they may pose a risk for movement of avian influenza viruses between wildlife and domestic animals in certain situations. Methodology/Principal Findings: To assess the viral shedding potential of AIV in cottontails, we nasally inoculated fourteen cottontails with a low pathogenic AIV (H4N6). All inoculated cottontails shed relatively large quantities of viral RNA both nasally (#106.94PCR EID50equivalents/mL) and orally (#105.09PCR EID50equivalents/mL). However, oral shedding tended to decline more quickly than did nasal shedding. No animals showed any obvious signs of disease throughout the study. Evidence of a serological response was found in all infected rabbits at 22 days post infection in convalescent sera. Conclusions/Significance: To our knowledge, cottontails have not been previously assessed for AIV shedding. However, it was obvious that they shed AIV RNA extensively via the nasal and oral routes. This is significant, as cottontails are widely distributed throughout the U.S. and elsewhere. These mammals are often found in highly peridomestic situations, such as farms, parks, and suburban neighborhoods, often becoming habituated to human activities. Thus, if infected these mammals could easily transport AIVs short distances.
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    ABSTRACT: Wild raccoons have been shown to be naturally exposed to avian influenza viruses (AIV). However, the mechanisms associated with these natural exposures are not well-understood.
    PLoS ONE 08/2014; 9(8):e102964. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0102964 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The study of influenza type A (IA) infections in wild mammals populations is a critical gap in our knowledge of how IA viruses evolve in novel hosts that could be in close contact with avian reservoir species and other wild animals. The aim of this study was to evaluate the susceptibility to infection, the nasal shedding and the transmissibility of the H7N1 and H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) viruses in the bank vole (Myodes glareolus), a wild rodent common throughout Europe and Asia. Two out of 24 H5N1-infected voles displayed evident respiratory distress, while H7N1-infected voles remained asymptomatic. Viable virus was isolated from nasal washes collected from animals infected with both HPAI viruses, and extra-pulmonary infection was confirmed in both experimental groups. Histopathological lesions were evident in the respiratory tract of infected animals, although immunohistochemistry positivity was only detected in lungs and trachea of two H7N1-infected voles. Both HPAI viruses were transmitted by direct contact, and seroconversion was confirmed in 50% and 12.5% of the asymptomatic sentinels in the H7N1 and H5N1 groups, respectively. Interestingly, viable virus was isolated from lungs and nasal washes collected from contact sentinels of both groups. The present study demonstrated that two non-rodent adapted HPAI viruses caused asymptomatic infection in bank voles, which shed high amounts of the viruses and were able to infect contact voles. Further investigations are needed to determine whether bank voles could be involved as silent hosts in the transmission of HPAI viruses to other mammals and domestic poultry.
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