28 Feb 2013

Pet rats as a source of hantavirus in England and Wales, 2013 (Euro Surveill., abstract, edited)

[Source: Eurosurveillance, full text: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Eurosurveillance, Volume 18, Issue 9, 28 February 2013

Rapid communications

Pet rats as a source of hantavirus in England and Wales, 2013

L J Jameson ()1,2, S K Taori3, B Atkinson1, P Levick4, C A Featherstone5, G van der Burgt6, N McCarthy7, J Hart8, J C Osborne3, A L Walsh9, T J Brooks3, R Hewson1

  1. Virology and Pathogenesis, Microbiology Services, Health Protection Agency, Porton Down, Wiltshire, United Kingdom
  2. Department of Clinical Infection, Microbiology and Immunology, Institute of Infection and Global Health, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom
  3. Rare and Imported Pathogens Department, Microbiology Services, Health Protection Agency, Porton Down, Wiltshire, United Kingdom
  4. Biological Investigations Group, Microbiology Services, Health Protection Agency, Porton Down, Wiltshire, United Kingdom
  5. Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency, Thirsk, Yorkshire, United Kingdom
  6. Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency, Luddington, Warwickshire, United Kingdom
  7. Thames Valley Health Protection Unit, Centre for Radiation, Chemical & Environmental Hazards, Health Protection Agency, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom
  8. Public Health Wales, Health Protection Team, Flintshire, United Kingdom
  9. Gastrointestinal, Emerging and Zoonotic Infections Department, Health Protection Services, Health Protection Agency Colindale, London, United Kingdom

Citation style for this article: Jameson LJ, Taori SK, Atkinson B, Levick P, Featherstone CA, van der Burgt G, McCarthy N, Hart J, Osborne JC, Walsh AL, Brooks TJ, Hewson R. Pet rats as a source of hantavirus in England and Wales, 2013. Euro Surveill. 2013;18(9):pii=20415. Available online: http://www.eurosurveillance.org/ViewArticle.aspx?ArticleId=20415
Date of submission: 21 February 2013


We report the detection of a strain of Seoul hantavirus (SEOV) in pet rats in England and Wales. The discovery followed an investigation of a case of haemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome in Wales. Hantavirus RNA was detected via real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and classic RT-PCR in pet rats belonging to the patient. Sequencing and phylogenetic analysis confirmed the virus to be a SEOV that is similar, but not identical, to a previously reported United Kingdom strain from wild rats.

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