Prevalence of canine distemper virus in wild mustelids in the Czech Republic and a case of canine distemper in young stone martens

https://doi.org/10.17221/2057-VETMEDCitation:Pavlacik L., Celer V., Koubek P., Literak I. (2007): Prevalence of canine distemper virus in wild mustelids in the Czech Republic and a case of canine distemper in young stone martens. Veterinarni Medicina, 52: 69-73.
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Between 2001 and 2003, a total of 194 samples of brain tissues of wild mustelids from the Czech Republic were tested for the presence of canine distemper virus (CDV) by direct immunofluorescence examination. Out of 21 animals exhibiting symptoms of the disease or changed behaviour, one mustelid was CDV positive (5% prevalence). In this group, 1 out of 18 stone martens (Martes foina) was CDV positive, while 2 pine martens (Martes martes) and 1 Eurasian badger (Meles meles) were CDV negative. Of 173 animals with unknown case history, 1 sample was positive (0.6% prevalence). In this group of animals, 1 out of 19 Eurasian badgers was positive, and stone martens (n = 96), pine martens (n = 4), polecats (Mustela putorius) ((n = 28), steppe polecats (Mustela eversmani) (n = 4), common weasels (Mustela nivalis) (n = 4), stoats (Mustela erminea) (n = 3) and American minks (Mustela vison) (n = 19) were negative. Clinical distemper was demonstrated in three stone marten pup siblings. In two of the siblings, CDV was demonstrated in footpads. The third of the siblings survived the acute stage of the disease and had virus neutralizing antibodies from the end of the acute stage until 6 months after the end of the acute stage, with a maximum antibody titre of 32. During the acute stage and 7 months after the end of the acute stage, no virus neutralizing antibodies were found.
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