Effect on Mice of Infection During Pregnancy with Three Australian Arboviruses

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  • Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Bramston Terrace, Herston, Brisbane, Queensland 4006, Australia

Infection of pregnant mice with Ross River or Getah viruses after the establishment of a functional placenta resulted in fetal infection with these viruses. However, only with Ross River virus was there any significant fetal death. There was significant post-partum mortality in mice infected in utero with Ross River but not with Getah virus. In contrast, significant post-partum mortality occurred in Murray Valley encephalitis virus-infected mice despite the inability of the virus to cross the placenta. Infection of mice with Ross River, Getah, or Murray Valley encephalitis viruses before placentation had occurred (5th day postconception) did not result in fetal infection although there was significant post-partum death in litters born to Ross River virus-infected mothers.