Coccidian and nematode infections influence prevalence of antibody to myxoma and rabbit hemorrhagic disease viruses in european rabbits

Alejandro Bertó-Moran, Isabel Pacios, Emmanuel Serrano, Sacramento Moreno, Carlos Rouco

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    11 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The interaction among several parasites in European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) is crucial to host fitness and to the epidemiology of myxomatosis and rabbit hemorrhagic disease. These diseases have caused significant reductions in rabbit populations on the Iberian Peninsula. Most studies have focused on the epidemiology and pathogenesis of these viruses individually, and little is known about interactions between these viruses and other parasites. Taking advantage of an experimental restocking program in Spain, the effects of coccidian and nematode infections on the probability of having detectable antibody to myxoma and rabbit hemorrhagic disease viruses were tested in European wild rabbits. For 14 mo, we monitored rabbit abundance and parasite loads (coccidia and nematodes) in three reintroduced rabbit populations. While coccidian and nematode loads explained seasonal antibody prevalences to myxoma virus, the pattern was less clear for rabbit hemorrhagic disease. Contrary to expectations, prevalence of antibody to myxoma virus was inversely proportional to coccidian load, while nematode load seemed to play a minor role. These results have implications for viral disease epidemiology and for disease management intended to increase rabbit populations in areas where they are important for ecosystem conservation. © Wildlife Disease Association 2013.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)10-17
    JournalJournal of Wildlife Diseases
    Volume49
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013

    Keywords

    • Coinfection
    • Disease management
    • Immune response
    • Oryctolagus cuniculus
    • Restocking
    • Viral diseases

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