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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz
ISSN: 1678-8060
EISSN: 1678-8060
Vol. 106, No. 8, 2011, pp. 976-979
Bioline Code: oc11191
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Vol. 106, No. 8, 2011, pp. 976-979

 en Seroconversion for West Nile and St. Louis encephalitis viruses among sentinel horses in Colombia
Mattar, Salim; Komar, Nicholas; Young, Ginger; Alvarez, Jaime & Gonzalez, Marco

Abstract

We prospectively sampled flavivirus-naïve horses in northern Colombia to detect West Nile virus (WNV) and St. Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV) seroconversion events, which would indicate the current circulation of these viruses. Overall, 331 (34.1%) of the 971 horses screened were positive for past infection with flaviviruses upon initial sampling in July 2006. During the 12-month study from July 2006-June 2007, 33 WNV seroconversions and 14 SLEV seroconversions were detected, most of which occurred in the department of Bolivar. The seroconversion rates of horses in Bolivar for the period of March-June 2007 reached 12.4% for WNV and 6.7% for SLEV. These results comprise the first serologic evidence of SLEV circulation in Colombia. None of the horses sampled developed symptoms of encephalitis within three years of initial sampling. Using seroconversions in sentinel horses, we demonstrated an active circulation of WNV and SLEV in northern Colombia, particularly in the department of Bolivar. The absence of WNV-attributed equine or human disease in Colombia and elsewhere in the Caribbean Basin remains a topic of debate and speculation.

Keywords
flavivirus - West Nile virus - St. Louis encephalitis virus - Colombia - equine

 
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