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Volume 6, Number 2—April 2000


Reply to Drs. Nowotny and Deutz

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To the Editor: We thank Drs. Nowotny and Deutz for their Letter (1) to the Editor regarding our letter in the January-February issue of Emerging Infectious Diseases (2). We agree that increased education and research efforts regarding zoonoses would benefit not only at-risk patients, but also veterinary and human health professionals. We also applaud their efforts to provide serologic evidence of exposure to zoonotic pathogens among veterinarians in Austria. However, readers should be aware of the zoonotic potential of two of the pathogens in their screening. Specifically, although both animals and humans suffer from respiratory syncytial virus infections, evidence is minimal for interspecies transmission of the domestic animal and human strains. Similarly, bovine viral diarrhea virus is an important bovine pathogen, but there is little evidence for its ability to infect humans.

Christopher W. Olsen* and Leslie L. Barton†
Author affiliations: *University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA; and †University of Arizona Health Sciences Center, Tucson, Arizona, USA


  1. Nowotny N, Deutz A. Preventing Zoonotic Diseases in Immunocompromised Persons: The Role of Physicians and Veterinarians. Emerg Infect Dis. 2000;6:208. DOIPubMed
  2. Grant S, Olsen CW. Preventing zoonotic diseases in immunocompromised persons: the role of physicians and veterinarians. Emerg Infect Dis. 1999;5:15963. DOIPubMed

Suggested citation: Olsen CW, Barton LL. Reply to Drs. Nowotny and Deutz [letter]. Emerg Infect Dis [serial on the Internet]. 2000, Apr [date cited]. Available from

DOI: 10.3201/eid0602.000220

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