Viral Infections of Monkeys in their Natural Habitat in Southern India

I. Some Properties of Cytopathic Agents Isolated from Bonnet and Langur Monkeys

View More View Less
  • Virus Research Centre, Department of Microbiology, Tulane University School of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology, Public Health Research Institute of the City of New York, Poona, India


Rectal swabbings were collected from a total of 70 live trapped, 324 shot and 52 spontaneously dead Macaca radiata or Presbytis entellus monkeys in the forest of Shimoga District, Mysore State, India during the period from June 1959 through May 1961. From the swabbings of 75 animals, agents cytopathic for bonnet monkey kidney cell cultures were isolated. In the frequency of recovery of viral agents, no significant differences were observed to be associated with the sex or maturity of the monkeys. There was a suggestion of seasonal variation in the frequency with which isolates of a given cytopathic effect (CPE) group were obtained.

Negative results were obtained when 362 salivary glands, 157 brain, 159 lung and 161 kidney tissues from monkeys in the same groups were examined for presence of cytopathic agents.

When tested in rhesus kidney tissue cell cultures 37 isolates fell into CPE group 1, 28 into CPE group 2 and 6 into group 4 of Hull et al.; data were not available on 4 isolates. The salivary glands of 2 spontaneously dead monkeys yielded viruses of the same CPE group 2 as were recovered from their rectal swabs. All of the isolates were chloroform-resistant.

All but one of the CPE group 1 isolates were shown to possess complement-fixing (CF) antigen common to the adenovirus group and most of them agglutinated rat erythrocytes; a minority clumped the erythrocytes of humans, monkeys or guinea pigs as well. Among the group 1 isolates there were at least 4 antigenic varieties including 3 which were related to simian adenoviruses M3 (SV22-P7), M10 (SV33-P10), and SV30 (P5) respectively.

Most of the CPE group 2 isolates did not show hemagglutination (HA) activity against rat, human, monkey or guinea pig erythrocytes. In our collection there appeared to be at least 3 antigenic varieties, one of them related to enterovirus strain 2600 (SV49-P19) previously recovered from a captive monkey.

The 6 isolates of CPE group 4 did not show HA activity with the erythrocytes used and were antigenically heterogeneous.

Three antigenically distinct agents of CPE group 1 (simian adenoviruses) were isolated from rectal swabbings collected on a single occasion from members of the same band of free-living monkeys.

Author Notes

Formerly Rockefeller Foundation fellow; now Senior Research Officer at VRC, Poona.

Formerly chief, Department of Epidemiology, Public Health Research Institute; now Professor of Preventive Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.

Virus Research Centre is jointly maintained by the Indian Council of Medical Research and the Rockefeller Foundation.