, Volume 123, Issue 3-4, pp 279-294

Antigenic relationships between field isolates of morbilliviruses from different carnivores

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Summary

The antigenic relationships between PDV and isolates of morbilliviruses from carnivores suffering from distemper were investigated. Fourteen isolates, originating from terrestrial carnivores and harbour seals from 1985–1991 from Denmark, Norway, Greenland, and the U.S.A. were reacted in IFA and ELISA with monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) directed against four virion proteins (NP, P, F, and H). The MAbs comprised a newly completed panel of 36 anti-PDV MAbs and 39 previously developed anti-CDV MAbs. The antigenic make-up of the isolates separated them into the CDV prototype group and the PDV prototype group, having the antigenic characteristics of the reference vaccine strains of CDV and the Danish PDV isolate, respectively. The minor antigenic variations within the CDV group contrasted markedly to the differences encountered between the CDV and PDV group. The PDV group included isolates made in 1988 from diseased seals of Danish and Norwegian waters and isolates made in 1989 from distemper outbreaks in Danish mink farms. In contrast, the other distemper isolates investigated, including isolates from 1986 from a corresponding Danish mink farm, revealed the antigenic characteristics of CDV. Our results strongly indicate that PDV was recently transmitted from diseased seals to terrestrial carnivores causing distemper epizootics among farmed mink.