Malpais Spring Virus: a New Vesiculovirus from Mosquitoes Collected in New Mexico and Evidence of Infected Indigenous and Exotic Ungulates

Gary G. ClarkDepartment of Arboviral Entomology, Disease Assessment Division, U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, Fort Detrick, Frederick, Maryland 21701

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Charles H. CalisherDivision of Vector-Borne Viral Diseases, Centers for Disease Control, U.S. Public Health Service, P.O. Box 2087, Fort Collins, Colorado 80522

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Carroll L. CrabbsDepartment of Arboviral Entomology, Disease Assessment Division, U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, Fort Detrick, Frederick, Maryland 21701

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Kevin M. CanestorpWhite Sands Missile Range, Environmental Office, New Mexico 88002

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Robert B. TeshYale Arbovirus Research Unit, Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Yale University School of Medicine, 60 College Street, New Haven, Connecticut 06510

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Richard A. BowenDepartment of Physiology, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado 80522

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Daisan E. TaylorWhite Sands Missile Range, Environmental Office, New Mexico 88002

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Two virus isolates, 1 each from Aedes campestris and Psorophora signipennis mosquitoes collected in south central New Mexico in August 1985, were shown by neutralization tests to be identical to each other, but not to any of more than 250 arthropodborne and other viruses. Electron microscopy of 1 isolate (85-488NM, chosen as the prototype) indicated that this strain shares morphologic characteristics with viruses of the family Rhabdoviridae. Indirect fluorescent antibody tests indicated that this virus is a member of the genus Vesiculovirus, but is not closely related to any of the North American or other rhabdoviruses with which it was tested, including vesicular stomatitis (Indiana) and vesicular stomatitis (New Jersey) viruses. The name Malpais Spring virus is proposed for this newly recognized vesiculovirus. A serologic survey indicated that Malpais Spring virus infects indigenous (mule deer and pronghorn) and exotic (gemsbok) ungulates at and near the sites where the mosquitoes from which the virus strains were isolated were collected. Antibody prevalence in wild animals indicates that the pronghorn and gemsbok may play roles as hosts for Malpais Spring, epizootic hemorrhagic disease (New Jersey), and bluetongue viruses in this area.

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