Lassa virus circulation in small mammal populations in Bo District, Sierra Leone

Bangura, U. et al. (2021) Lassa virus circulation in small mammal populations in Bo District, Sierra Leone. Biology, 10(1), 28. (doi: 10.3390/biology10010028) (PMID:33466234) (PMCID:PMC7824740)

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Abstract

Lassa fever is a viral hemorrhagic fever caused by the Lassa virus LASV, which was first isolated in the rodent Mastomys natalensis in 1974 in Kenema, Sierra Leone. As little is known about the abundance and the presence of LASV in rodents living in the Bo area, we carried out a small mammal longitudinal population survey. A standardized trapping session was performed in various habitats and seasons in six villages over two years (2014−2016) and samples collected were tested for arenavirus IgG and LASV. A Bayesian phylogenetic analysis was performed on sequences identified by PCR. A total of 1490 small mammals were collected, and 16 rodent species were identified, with M. natalensis (355, 24%) found to be the most prevalent species. Forty-one (2.8%) samples were IgG positive, and 31 of these were trapped in homes and 10 in surrounding vegetation. Twenty-nine of 41 seropositive rodents were M. natalensis. We detected four LASV by PCR in two villages, all found in M. natalensis. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the sequences were distributed within the Sierra Leonean clade within lineage IV, distinguishing a Bo sub-clade older than a Kenema sub-clade. Compared to other settings, we found a low abundance of M. natalensis and a low circulation of LASV in rodents in villages around Bo district.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This research was funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemainschaft (DFG—German Research Foundation) as part of a project entitled “Lassa fever in Guinea and Sierra Leone: rodent control and seasonality of human exposure to rodents (LAROCS)”, 2013–2019 (ref BO 3790/1&2-1, FI 1781/1&2-1), and by PANDORA-ID-NET from the EDCTP Reg/(RIA2016E-1609).
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Thomson, Professor Emma and Davis, Dr Chris
Creator Roles:
Davis, C.Data curation, Formal analysis
Thomson, E. C.Funding acquisition, Writing – review and editing
Authors: Bangura, U., Buanie, J., Lamin, J., Davis, C., Bongo, G. N., Dawson, M., Ansumana, R., Sondufu, D., Thomson, E. C., Sahr, F., and Fichet-Calvet, E.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation > Centre for Virus Research
Journal Name:Biology
Publisher:MDPI
ISSN:2079-7737
ISSN (Online):2079-7737
Published Online:05 January 2021
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2021 The Authors
First Published:First published in Biology 10(1): 28
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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