Distribution of Neutralizing Antibodies to California and Bunyamwera Serogroup Viruses in Horses and Rodents in California

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  • School of Public Health, University of California, University of California, Berkeley, California

Neutralization tests were done on sera from 141 horses from high elevation regions of California. Antibody prevalences to Jamestown Canyon, snowshoe hare, and California encephalitis viruses in the California serogroup and Northway virus in the Bunyamwera serogroup were 55%, 43%, 18%, and 46%, respectively. In 51 horses from rural low elevation regions, seroprevalences were 31%, 35%, 35%, and 37%, respectively. Twenty-four horses from a suburban lowland area were seronegative, except for a single horse with a low titer to snowshoe hare virus. Seroprevalence to Jamestown Canyon and snowshoe have viruses was associated with increasing age. Only 2 of 177 rodents from the Sierra Nevada had antibodies to Northway virus; none had antibodies to Jamestown Canyon or snowshoe hare viruses.