A survey of rodent-borne pathogens carried by wild-caught Norway rats: A potential threat to laboratory rodent colonies

Judith D. Easterbrook, J. B. Kaplan, G. E. Glass, Julie Watson, Sabra L Klein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Unintentional infection of laboratory rodents can compromise scientific research as well as the health of the animals and animal handlers. The source of contamination often is unknown, but may be introduced by wild rats from surrounding environments. To determine whether rats in Baltimore, Maryland, USA carry infectious agents commonly found in laboratory rodent colonies, we live-trapped 162 rats during 2005 to 2006 and screened them for a panel of viruses, bacteria and parasites. Antibodies against rat coronavirus/ sialodacryoadenitis virus (91.7%), Mycoplasma pulmonis (72.9%), cilia-associated respiratory bacillus (52.1%), rat parvovirus/rat minute virus (29.2%), Kilham rat virus (10.4%), Toolan's H-1 virus (10.4%), Sendai virus (4.2%) and Theiler's mouse encephalomyelitis virus (4.2%), were detected in wild-caught Norway rats. Antibodies against reovirus and pneumonia virus of mice were not detected in wild Norway rats. Endoparasites, including Nippostrongylus braziliensis (71.6%), Rodentolepis nana or Hymenolepis diminuta (34.4%), Hetarakis spumosa (24.1%) and Trichuris muris (14.8%), as well as ectoparasites (14.8%), were identified in wild-caught rats. The risk of pathogen transmission from wild-caught rats to laboratory colonies needs to be mitigated by minimizing exposures rather than assuming wild animals represent a minimal hazard.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)92-98
Number of pages7
JournalLaboratory Animals
Volume42
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2008

Fingerprint

Rattus norvegicus
Rodentia
rodents
pathogens
rats
Parvovirus
viruses
Viruses
Nippostrongylus
Rat coronavirus
Murine pneumonia virus
Rat Coronavirus
Trichuris muris
Maus Elberfeld virus
Mycoplasma pulmonis
Hymenolepis nana
Sendai virus
Hymenolepis diminuta
Theilovirus
Laboratory Infection

Keywords

  • Ectoparasites
  • Hookworms
  • Parvoviruses
  • Pinworms
  • Zoonoses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • veterinary(all)

Cite this

A survey of rodent-borne pathogens carried by wild-caught Norway rats : A potential threat to laboratory rodent colonies. / Easterbrook, Judith D.; Kaplan, J. B.; Glass, G. E.; Watson, Julie; Klein, Sabra L.

In: Laboratory Animals, Vol. 42, No. 1, 01.2008, p. 92-98.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{fc548dc5a3d24efe819f54284276bc91,
title = "A survey of rodent-borne pathogens carried by wild-caught Norway rats: A potential threat to laboratory rodent colonies",
abstract = "Unintentional infection of laboratory rodents can compromise scientific research as well as the health of the animals and animal handlers. The source of contamination often is unknown, but may be introduced by wild rats from surrounding environments. To determine whether rats in Baltimore, Maryland, USA carry infectious agents commonly found in laboratory rodent colonies, we live-trapped 162 rats during 2005 to 2006 and screened them for a panel of viruses, bacteria and parasites. Antibodies against rat coronavirus/ sialodacryoadenitis virus (91.7{\%}), Mycoplasma pulmonis (72.9{\%}), cilia-associated respiratory bacillus (52.1{\%}), rat parvovirus/rat minute virus (29.2{\%}), Kilham rat virus (10.4{\%}), Toolan's H-1 virus (10.4{\%}), Sendai virus (4.2{\%}) and Theiler's mouse encephalomyelitis virus (4.2{\%}), were detected in wild-caught Norway rats. Antibodies against reovirus and pneumonia virus of mice were not detected in wild Norway rats. Endoparasites, including Nippostrongylus braziliensis (71.6{\%}), Rodentolepis nana or Hymenolepis diminuta (34.4{\%}), Hetarakis spumosa (24.1{\%}) and Trichuris muris (14.8{\%}), as well as ectoparasites (14.8{\%}), were identified in wild-caught rats. The risk of pathogen transmission from wild-caught rats to laboratory colonies needs to be mitigated by minimizing exposures rather than assuming wild animals represent a minimal hazard.",
keywords = "Ectoparasites, Hookworms, Parvoviruses, Pinworms, Zoonoses",
author = "Easterbrook, {Judith D.} and Kaplan, {J. B.} and Glass, {G. E.} and Julie Watson and Klein, {Sabra L}",
year = "2008",
month = "1",
doi = "10.1258/la.2007.06015e",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "42",
pages = "92--98",
journal = "Laboratory Animals",
issn = "0023-6772",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Ltd",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - A survey of rodent-borne pathogens carried by wild-caught Norway rats

T2 - A potential threat to laboratory rodent colonies

AU - Easterbrook, Judith D.

AU - Kaplan, J. B.

AU - Glass, G. E.

AU - Watson, Julie

AU - Klein, Sabra L

PY - 2008/1

Y1 - 2008/1

N2 - Unintentional infection of laboratory rodents can compromise scientific research as well as the health of the animals and animal handlers. The source of contamination often is unknown, but may be introduced by wild rats from surrounding environments. To determine whether rats in Baltimore, Maryland, USA carry infectious agents commonly found in laboratory rodent colonies, we live-trapped 162 rats during 2005 to 2006 and screened them for a panel of viruses, bacteria and parasites. Antibodies against rat coronavirus/ sialodacryoadenitis virus (91.7%), Mycoplasma pulmonis (72.9%), cilia-associated respiratory bacillus (52.1%), rat parvovirus/rat minute virus (29.2%), Kilham rat virus (10.4%), Toolan's H-1 virus (10.4%), Sendai virus (4.2%) and Theiler's mouse encephalomyelitis virus (4.2%), were detected in wild-caught Norway rats. Antibodies against reovirus and pneumonia virus of mice were not detected in wild Norway rats. Endoparasites, including Nippostrongylus braziliensis (71.6%), Rodentolepis nana or Hymenolepis diminuta (34.4%), Hetarakis spumosa (24.1%) and Trichuris muris (14.8%), as well as ectoparasites (14.8%), were identified in wild-caught rats. The risk of pathogen transmission from wild-caught rats to laboratory colonies needs to be mitigated by minimizing exposures rather than assuming wild animals represent a minimal hazard.

AB - Unintentional infection of laboratory rodents can compromise scientific research as well as the health of the animals and animal handlers. The source of contamination often is unknown, but may be introduced by wild rats from surrounding environments. To determine whether rats in Baltimore, Maryland, USA carry infectious agents commonly found in laboratory rodent colonies, we live-trapped 162 rats during 2005 to 2006 and screened them for a panel of viruses, bacteria and parasites. Antibodies against rat coronavirus/ sialodacryoadenitis virus (91.7%), Mycoplasma pulmonis (72.9%), cilia-associated respiratory bacillus (52.1%), rat parvovirus/rat minute virus (29.2%), Kilham rat virus (10.4%), Toolan's H-1 virus (10.4%), Sendai virus (4.2%) and Theiler's mouse encephalomyelitis virus (4.2%), were detected in wild-caught Norway rats. Antibodies against reovirus and pneumonia virus of mice were not detected in wild Norway rats. Endoparasites, including Nippostrongylus braziliensis (71.6%), Rodentolepis nana or Hymenolepis diminuta (34.4%), Hetarakis spumosa (24.1%) and Trichuris muris (14.8%), as well as ectoparasites (14.8%), were identified in wild-caught rats. The risk of pathogen transmission from wild-caught rats to laboratory colonies needs to be mitigated by minimizing exposures rather than assuming wild animals represent a minimal hazard.

KW - Ectoparasites

KW - Hookworms

KW - Parvoviruses

KW - Pinworms

KW - Zoonoses

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=42249100852&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=42249100852&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1258/la.2007.06015e

DO - 10.1258/la.2007.06015e

M3 - Article

C2 - 18348770

AN - SCOPUS:42249100852

VL - 42

SP - 92

EP - 98

JO - Laboratory Animals

JF - Laboratory Animals

SN - 0023-6772

IS - 1

ER -