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PERIDOMESTIC SMALL MAMMALS ASSOCIATED WITH CONFIRMED CASES OF HUMAN HANTAVIRUS DISEASE IN SOUTHCENTRAL CHILE

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  • 1 Departamento de Ecología, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile; Centro de Estudios Médicos, Departamento de Enfermedades Infecciosas, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile; Centro de Estudios Avanzados en Ecología y Biodiversidad, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile; Department of Biology, Museum of Southwestern Biology, and Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico; Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad del Desarrollo, Santiago, Chile

Cases of human hantavirus disease have been reported in Chile since 1995, most of them in people living in rural and periurban areas. We conducted a peridomestic study of small mammals to evaluate the relationships between the presence of rodents with antibodies to Andes virus confirmed human cases of hantavirus pulmonary syndrome in southcentral Chile. The results of 20 sampled sites, which involved the capture of 272 mice over an 18-month period, showed the occurrence of 10 small mammal species, of which Oligoryzomys longicaudatus was the only seropositive species for hantavirus, with an intra-specific serologic rate of 10.4%.

Author Notes

Reprint requests: R. Eduardo Palma, Departamento de Ecología, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Casilla 114-D, Santiago 6513677, Chile, Fax: 56-2-686-2621, E-mail: epalma@genes.bio.puc.cl.
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