Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Common House Sparrows Potential Reservoir For West Nile Virus

Date:
November 2, 2000
Source:
American Society For Microbiology
Summary:
Common house sparrows may be an important reservoir host for West Nile virus, Dr. Nicholas Komar reported at the annual meeting of the American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. Among avian species, the virus has been isolated most frequently from dead crows, but "crows may be just the tip of the iceberg," said Komar, of the Arbovirus Disease Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Ft. Collins, Col.

Common house sparrows may be an important reservoir host for West Nile virus, Dr. Nicholas Komar reported at the annual meeting of the American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

Related Articles


Among avian species, the virus has been isolated most frequently from dead crows, but "crows may be just the tip of the iceberg," said Komar, of the Arbovirus Disease Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Ft. Collins, Col.

A reservoir host can harbor the virus without being killed by it and serve as a source of the virus for mosquitoes, he explained. Studies undertaken in the Northeastern United States since the West Nile virus was first discovered there have implicated wild birds as the vertebrate reservoir. The finding that common house sparrows can be a reservoir does not mean that humans are at increased risk, he emphasized.

Komar and his colleagues evaluated the reservoir competence of some wild bird species by exposing them to bites of mosquitoes carrying the NY99 strain of the virus and analyzing their blood at 24-hr intervals. Species studied included house sparrows, pigeons, and several others that are common residents of the Northeastern United States..

Most birds survived the infection and developed neutralizing antibodies. House sparrows developed the highest levels of circulating West Nile virus and had the longest duration of infectious viremia, up to a maximum of 5 days, compared with the other species. For example, in pigeons viremia lasted only 1 day.

To evaluate the influence of the virus strain on the magnitude and duration of viremia, two groups of house sparrows were inoculated with either the NY99 or the EG101 strain. The mean peak viremia in house sparrows was greater and duration of viremia longer with the NY99 strain, suggesting that further evaluation of virus strain differences is warranted, he said.

"Sparrows are resident birds and do not migrate, so they are probably not involved in transporting the virus," Komar said. "However, as reservoir hosts the virus can multiply in the sparrows without killing them." It is likely that other birds are also reservoir hosts for the virus, and the species that is responsible for the migration of the virus along the East Coast has yet to be identified, he noted.

The American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH) is the principal organization in the United States representing scientists, clinicians, and others with interests in the prevention and control of tropical diseases through research and education. Additional information on the meeting can be found at http://www.astmh.org/presskit.htm.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society For Microbiology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Society For Microbiology. "Common House Sparrows Potential Reservoir For West Nile Virus." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 November 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/11/001102071811.htm>.
American Society For Microbiology. (2000, November 2). Common House Sparrows Potential Reservoir For West Nile Virus. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/11/001102071811.htm
American Society For Microbiology. "Common House Sparrows Potential Reservoir For West Nile Virus." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/11/001102071811.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) Millions of monarch butterflies begin to descend onto Mexico as part of their annual migration south. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Birds Might Be Better Meteorologists Than Us

Birds Might Be Better Meteorologists Than Us

Newsy (Dec. 19, 2014) A new study suggests a certain type of bird was able to sense a tornado outbreak that moved through the U.S. a day before it hit. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins