Volume 18, Issue 5
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645


The number of currently catalogued arbovirus serotypes has increased dramatically from 34 in December 1949 to 228 in January 1969. Techniques involving inoculation of suckling mice principally, and tissue cultures to a lesser extent, provided the key to unlock a Pandora's box of arboviruses, especially in tropical areas, whenever serologic research stations were established between 1950 and the present.

Although most of the recently described arboviruses have been designated by the town, district, or geographic location such as a river valley from which the specimens yielding the new prototypes were isolated, difficulties regarding nomenclature have persisted with some older arboviruses that were named for the symptoms that they induced in man or domestic animals. Following the leadership of Smithburn and Haddow in 1944, who designated the recently isolated non-yellow fever virus, Bunyamwera, after the location in the African forest from which this agent was recovered from mosquitoes, most arbovirologists have applied geographic names to isolates of new arbovirus serotypes.


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