Volume 35, Issue 6
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Six isolates of a new phlebotomus fever serogroup virus, designated Arboledas virus, were obtained from sand flies ( spp.) collected in northeastern Colombia. One of the isolates was made from a pool of male sand flies. By immunofluorescence, Arboledas virus is related to Caimito and Pacui viruses; by neutralization test, it is distinct. Arboledas virus neutralizing antibodies were found in the sera of opossums () and humans living in the study area. inoculated with the virus developed a viremia of four days' duration, and sand flies () feeding on a viremic opossum were readily infected. Transovarial transmission of Arboledas virus was also demonstrated in experimentally infected . Results of the above laboratory studies suggest that Arboledas virus is maintained in nature by two mechanisms: vertical (transovarial) transmission in the insect vector, and an alternating marsupial-sand fly cycle. The implications of this complex maintenance cycle for other phleboviruses are discussed.


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