Prevalence of antibody to hantaviruses in humans and rodents in Italy. Provisional evidence of Hantaan-like virus infections in humans and Seoul-like virus infections in rodents
A serological investigation of 1583 healthy residents of several ecologic zones of central and northern Italy showed the presence of IgG antibodies to hantaviruses in 37 (2.3%) of them. No antibodies to hanta-viruses were found in 158 individuals conceivably at risk to acquiring infection with these viruses. Two of 20 mammalogists and 3 of 51 patients on renal dialysis had low titer (16–32) antibody to hantaviruses. Of 257 others at possible risk, 9 of 192 farmers and 7 of 65 foresters had antibody to hantaviruses and more often had relatively higher titers than did the others with antibody.
Antibodies to hantaviruses were detected in 26 of 50 Rattus norvegicus, 3 of 17 Rattus rattus, and 6 of 31 Mus musculus captured in Rome. Titrations of rodent sera provided indications of infection with a Seoul-like virus, rather than with Hantaan or other hantaviruses. No antibodies to Hantaan, Seoul, or Puumala virus were found in 32 rodents trapped on the Pontine Islands near Rome.
KeywordsRattus Norvegicus Hemorrhagic Fever With Renal Syndrome Renal Dialysis Hantavirus Infection Nephropathia Epidemica
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