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Volume 9, Number 3—March 2003

Research

Experimental Infection of North American Birds with the New York 1999 Strain of West Nile Virus

Nicholas Komar*Comments to Author , Stanley Langevin*, Steven Hinten*, Nicole Nemeth*†, Eric Edwards*†, Danielle L. Hettler*†, Brent S. Davis*, Richard A. Bowen†, and Michel L. Bunning*‡
Author affiliations: *Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA; †Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA; ‡Office of the Surgeon General, United States Air Force, Bolling Air Force Base, Washington, D.C., USA

Main Article

Table 9

Viral load, determined by Vero plaque assay in organs harvested from surviving birds 14 days after West Nile virus (WNV) infection by mosquito bitea,b

Species ID no. Sex Organ (PFU/0.5 cm3)
Days postviremia
Br Ki He Sp Li Lu In Es Go Sk Ey
American Kestrelc
F2
F
d
20

20




NT
30

10
American Kestrel
F3
F



10




NT


11
Japanese Quail
902
U
10
10









8
Japanese Quail
904
U



10




10


14
Japanese Quail
907
U


20
20







14
Killdeer
CT
U

60




20


110

9
Killdeer
WT
U



550





2x104

10
Mourning Dove
LCW
U

20









10
Mourning Dove
RB
M

100









11
Budgerigar
13591
U


130








13
Blue Jay
911
U
20









360
9
Fish Crow
049
U










30
9
Red-winged Blackbird
711
M


10

10






11
Common Grackle
119
F



10



10
20
380
150
11
Common Grackle
122
M










10
10
House Sparrow
011
F
10
50




40
90

370
60
8
House Sparrow
012
M



120

590
10


10

10
House Sparrow 016 M 200 20 50 20 50 8

aFor each bird, the number of days postviremia is indicated. Birds from which no virus was detected are not included. WNV was isolated from at least one organ sample from 18 birds, and at least one isolate was made from each of the 11 different organs. Liver had the fewest isolates with one; spleen had the most with eight. Titers were generally low. The highest titered specimen was a skin sample from a Killdeer. Twenty-three surviving birds had no WNV isolated from tissues at 14 days postinoculation, including three Northern Bobwhite, three Ring-necked Pheasants, three Monk Parakeets, two Budgerigars, one Great Horned Owl, one Mourning Dove, six European Starlings, two Common Grackles, and two Red-winged Blackbirds. In addition, five Rock Doves were sampled at 64 days postinoculation and were negative.
bM, male; F, female; U, undetermined gender or gender not recorded; Br, brain; Ki, kidney; He, heart; Sp, spleen; Li, liver; Lu, lung; In, intestine; Es, esophagus; Go, gonad; Sk, skin; Ey, eye; and NT, not tested.
cKestrels were tested 15 days postinoculation.
d – indicates that no virus was isolated (threshold of detection 10 PFU/0.5 cm3 tissue).

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