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Three hundred and fourteen red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in the province of Soria, Spain, were examined for hantavirus and lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) infection (and were likely to have been infected by feeding on infected rodents). Immunofluorescence and western blot assays confirmed 3.5% (11/314) to have antibodies to hantaviruses, and the immune fluorescence assay showed 2.2% (7/314) to have antibodies to LCMV. The serologic status of the animals showed no statistically significant association with sex or age. Although studies on the prevalence of hantaviruses and LCMV normally focus on rodents, our results showed that foxes can provide complementary information in determined areas.


Lourdes Lledó, José Luis Serrano, Consuelo Giménez-Pardo, Isabel Gegúndez. Wild Red Foxes (Vulpes vulpes) as Sentinels of Rodent-Borne Hantavirus and Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis Virus in the Province of Soria, Northern Spain. Journal of wildlife diseases. 2020 Jul;56(3):658-661

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PMID: 32011204

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