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pigs, llamas susceptible to MERS-CoV infection

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arirish View Drop Down
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    Posted: December 01 2016 at 4:05pm
Study says pigs, llamas susceptible to MERS-CoV infection

Pigs and llamas appear prone to infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), according to researchers who experimentally infected four animal species and reported their findings yesterday in Emerging Infectious Diseases.

Spanish and Dutch investigators inoculated 14 pigs, 8 llamas, 14 sheep, and 8 horses with MERS-CoV intranasally. They then collected nasal swabs at various times afterward.

Three each of the llamas, horses, and pigs excreted mucus after inoculation. Only pigs and llamas, however, excreted virus in the nose, as determined by polymerase chain reaction testing. Starting 2 days after inoculation, 7 of 14 pigs and 7 of 8 llamas tested positive for infectious virus for at least 1 day. Infectious MERS-CoV was found in pigs 4 days after inoculation and in llamas 7 days after inoculation, and viral titers were lower in the pigs.

A similar study last year in the journal Viruses found no MERS-CoV shedding in goats, sheep, and horses.

Regarding the results in pigs, the authors wrote, "The finding that pigs can be infected with MERS-CoV suggests that other members of the family Suidae could be susceptible to the virus, such as common warthogs (Phacochoerus africanus), bushpigs (Potamochoerus larvatus), and wild boars (Sus scrofa scrofa). Indeed, these animals are commonly found in the Greater Horn of Africa or the Middle East, sharing territories and water sources with dromedaries."
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EdwinSm, View Drop Down

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote EdwinSm, Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 01 2016 at 10:30pm
Worrying news. But at least in the culture of the ME pigs and camels should not mix, and llamas are far away, so cross species infections should have a low probability of occurring.
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