Experimental infection of big brown bats ( Eptesicus fuscus) with Eurasian bat lyssaviruses Aravan, Khujand, and Irkut virus
First Online: 18 May 2006 Received: 27 June 2005 Accepted: 03 October 2005 DOI:
Cite this article as: Hughes, G., Kuzmin, I., Schmitz, A. et al. Arch Virol (2006) 151: 2021. doi:10.1007/s00705-005-0785-0 Summary.
Here we describe the results of experimental infections of captive big brown bats (
Eptesicus fuscus) with three newly isolated bat lyssaviruses from Eurasia (Aravan, Khujand, and Irkut viruses). Infection of E. fuscus was moderate (total, 55–75%). There was no evidence of transmission to in-contact cage mates. Incubation periods for Irkut virus infection were significantly shorter ( p < 0.05) than for either Aravan or Khujand virus infections. In turn, quantification of viral RNA by TaqMan PCR suggests that the dynamics of Irkut virus infection may differ from those of Aravan/Khujand virus infection. Although infectious virus and viral RNA were detected in the brain of every rabid animal, dissemination to non-neuronal tissues was limited. Levels of viral RNA in brain of Aravan/Khujand virus-infected bats was significantly correlated with the number of other tissues positive by TaqMan PCR ( p < 0.05), whereas no such relationship was observed for Irkut virus infection (where viral RNA was consistently detected in all tissues other than kidney). 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