Volume 15, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



In general, the results of a serological survey of 1420 sera representing 34 species of primates agree with previous reports in the literature and suggest that there is either very little leptospiral infection in these animals in Nature, or that their antibodies formed in response to leptospiral infection do not persist for any appreciable length of time. Fourteen of the 19 serologic reactors among baboons (), 9 of the 48 reactors among chimpanzees (), 2 of the 3 reactors among the patas monkeys (), and the one reactor among the marmosets () showed antibodies agglutinating , a serotype not known to occur in the native habitat of these animals, but prevalent in the mouse in the United States. In addition, at least two of the infections in the group of chimpanzees examined are known to have occurred while the animals were in captivity; this serotype has also been demonstrated in the mouse and many other small mammals in the United States. All four of these primate species are known to catch and eat insects and small mammals.

The absence of detectable leptospiral agglutinins in all except one of the small group of New World primates examined confirms the previous published and unpublished findings of other workers. To date, there is no evidence of leptospiral infections in Nature among any of the New World primates.


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