West Nile Virus Viremia in Eastern Chipmunks (Tamias striatus) Sufficient for Infecting Different Mosquitoes

Date
2007-01-01
Authors
Platt, Kenneth
Tucker, Bradley
Halbur, Patrick
Tiawsirisup, Sonthaya
Blitvich, Bradley
Fabiosa, Flor
Bartholomay, Lyric
Rowley, Wayne
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Abstract

In eastern chipmunks (Tamias striatus) inoculated intramuscularly with 101.5 to 105.7 PFU of West Nile virus (WNV), serum titers developed sufficient to infect Aedes triseriatus (Say), Ae. vexans (Meigen), andCulex pipiens (L.). Mean titers (95% confidence interval) of 8 chipmunks were 103.9(3.3–4.5), 106.7(6.4–7.0), and 105.8(4.1–7.5) PFU/mL on days 1–3 postinoculation (p.i.) and 105.8 PFU/mL in 1 chipmunk on day 4 p.i. Mean estimated days that WNV titers were >104.8 and >105.6 were 1.7 (1.1–2.3) and 1.4 (1.0–1.6). The longest period of viremia >104.8 PFU/mL was 3–4 days. WNV antigen was detected in the small intestine of 2 chipmunks and the kidneys of 4 chipmunks by immunohistochemistry. WNV also was detected in urine, saliva, and feces of some chipmunks. These data suggest chipmunks might play a role in enzootic WNV cycles and be an amplifying host for mosquitoes that could infect humans.

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This article is from Emerging Infectious Diseases 13 (2007): 831, doi:10.3201/eid1306.061008

Keywords
West Nile virus, chipmunks, Aedes triseriatus, Aedes vexans, Culex pipiens, research
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