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J Virol. 2013 Jan;87(1):558-71. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00837-12. Epub 2012 Oct 24.

Characterizing the picornavirus landscape among synanthropic nonhuman primates in Bangladesh, 2007 to 2008.

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  • 1Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.


The term synanthropic describes organisms that thrive in human-altered habitats. Where synanthropic nonhuman primates (NHP) share an ecological niche with humans, cross-species transmission of infectious agents can occur. In Bangladesh, synanthropic NHP are found in villages, densely populated cities, religious sites, and protected forest areas. NHP are also kept as performing monkeys and pets. To investigate possible transmission of enteric picornaviruses between humans and NHP, we collected fecal specimens from five NHP taxa at16 locations in Bangladesh during five field sessions, from January 2007 to June 2008. Specimens were screened using real-time PCR assays for the genera Enterovirus, Parechovirus, and Sapelovirus; PCR-positive samples were typed by VP1 sequencing. To compare picornavirus diversity between humans and NHP, the same assays were applied to 211 human stool specimens collected in Bangladesh in 2007 to 2008 for acute flaccid paralysis surveillance. Picornaviruses were detected in 78 of 677 (11.5%) NHP fecal samples. Twenty distinct human enterovirus (EV) serotypes, two bovine EV types, six human parechovirus serotypes, and one virus related to Ljungan virus were identified. Twenty-five additional enteroviruses and eight parechoviruses could not be typed. Comparison of the picornavirus serotypes detected in NHP specimens with those detected in human specimens revealed considerable overlap. Strikingly, no known simian enteroviruses were detected among these NHP populations. In conclusion, enteroviruses and parechoviruses may be transmitted between humans and synanthropic NHP in Bangladesh, but the directionality of transmission is unknown. These findings may have important implications for the health of both human and NHP populations.

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