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Sentinel pigs were bled and mosquitoes were collected for isolation of Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) between 1969 and 1973 in a rural area of northern Taiwan which reported a high annual incidence of human cases. The study site included a farmyard, schools, a bat cave, rice paddies and a heronry. Although Culex annulus was collected in every month of the year, isolations were made only in midsummer and only from Culex annulus and (once) from Culex tritaeniorhynchus. These isolates were usually collected from pig-related sources. Human cases in the vicinity of the study site were reported 3 to 6 weeks following the initial isolations from sentinel pigs. Isolations were made only for 4 to 8 weeks each summer. The isolation of JEV was not related to the availability of susceptible pigs or the spring or summer peaks in prevalence of Culex annulus. Despite periodic draining of rice paddies and the application of insecticides, sufficient numbers of Culex annulus were available to support transmission of JEV in each year of the study.
Present address: Division of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles, California 90024.