Sangkachai N, et al. Serological evidence of influenza virus infection in captive wild felids, Thailand. J Vet Med Sci. 2019 Jul 23.
Influenza virus is known to affect wild felids. To explore the prevalence of influenza viruses in these animal species, 196 archival sera from 5 felid species including Panthera tigris (N=147), Prionailurus viverrinus (N=35), Panthera leo (N=5), Pardofelis temminckii (N=8) and Neofelis nebulosa (N=1) collected between 2011 and 2015 in 10 provinces of Thailand were determined for the presence of antibody to avian and human influenza viruses. Blocking enzyme-linked immunosorbent (ELISA) assay and hemagglutination inhibition (HI) assay were employed as the screening tests, which the serum samples with HI antibody titers 320 were further confirmed by cytopathic effect/hemagglutination based-microneutralization (CPE/HA-based microNT) test. Based on HI and microNT assays, the seropositive rates of low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) H5 virus, highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5 virus and human H1 virus were 1.53% (3/196), 2.04% (4/196) and 6.63% (13/196), respectively. In addition, we also found antibody against both LPAI H5 virus and HPAI H5 virus in 2 out of 196 tested sera (1.02%). Evidences of influenza virus infection were found in captive P. tigris in Kanchanaburi, Nakhon Sawan and Ratchaburi provinces of Thailand. The findings of our study highlights the need of a continuous active surveillance program of influenza viruses in wild felid species.
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