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Seroprevalence of Sandfly-Borne Phleboviruses Belonging to Three Serocomplexes (Sandfly fever Naples, Sandfly fever Sicilian and Salehabad) in Dogs from Greece and Cyprus Using Neutralization Test.

Seroprevalence of Sandfly-Borne Phleboviruses Belonging to Three Serocomplexes (Sandfly fever Naples, Sandfly fever Sicilian and Salehabad) in Dogs from Greece and Cyprus Using Neutralization Test.
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Alwassouf S, Christodoulou V, Bichaud L, Ntais P, Mazeris A, Antoniou M, Charrel RN,


Alwassouf S, Christodoulou V, Bichaud L, Ntais P, Mazeris A, Antoniou M, Charrel RN, (click to view)

Alwassouf S, Christodoulou V, Bichaud L, Ntais P, Mazeris A, Antoniou M, Charrel RN,

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PLoS neglected tropical diseases 2016 Oct 2610(10) e0005063 doi 10.1371/journal.pntd.0005063
Abstract

Phleboviruses transmitted by sandflies are endemic in the Mediterranean area. The last decade has witnessed the description of an accumulating number of novel viruses. Although, the risk of exposure of vertebrates is globally assessed, detailed geographic knowledge is poor even in Greece and Cyprus where sandfly fever has been recognized for a long time and repeatedly. A total of 1,250 dogs from mainland Greece and Greek archipelago on one hand and 422 dogs from Cyprus on the other hand have been sampled and tested for neutralising antibodies against Toscana virus (TOSV), Sandfly fever Sicilian virus (SFSV), Arbia virus, and Adana virus i.e. four viruses belonging to the 3 sandfly-borne serocomplexes known to circulate actively in the Mediterranean area. Our results showed that (i) SFSV is highly prevalent with 71.9% (50.7-84.9% depending on the region) in Greece and 60.2% (40.0-72.6%) in Cyprus; (ii) TOSV ranked second with 4.4% (0-15.4%) in Greece and 8.4% (0-11.4%) in Cyprus; (iii) Salehabad viruses (Arbia and Adana) displayed also substantial prevalence rates in both countries with values ranging from 0-22.6% depending on the region and on the virus strain used in the test. These results demonstrate that circulation of viruses transmitted by sand flies can be estimated qualitatively using dog sera. As reported in other regions of the Mediterranean, these results indicate that it is time to shift these viruses from the "neglected" status to the "priority" status in order to stimulate studies aiming at defining and quantifying their medical and veterinary importance and possible public health impact. Specifically, viruses belonging to the Sandfly fever Sicilian complex should be given careful consideration. This calls for implementation of direct and indirect diagnosis in National reference centers and in hospital microbiology laboratories and systematic testing of unelucidated febrile illness and central and peripheral nervous system febrile manifestations.

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