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J Gen Virol. 2007 Nov;88(Pt 11):3089-93.

Minute excretion of highly pathogenic avian influenza virus A/chicken/Indonesia/2003 (H5N1) from experimentally infected domestic pigeons (Columbia livia) and lack of transmission to sentinel chickens.

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  • 1Institute of Diagnostic Virology, Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut (FLI), Federal Research Institute for Animal Health, 17493 Greifswald-Insel Riems, Germany.


Five out of sixteen domestic pigeons, inoculated oculo-nasally with a high dose of highly pathogenic avian influenza virus A/chicken/Indonesia/2003 (H5N1), developed clinical signs and neurological lesions leading to death of three pigeons 5-7 days after inoculation [Klopfleisch, R., Werner, O., Mundt, E., Harder, T. & Teifke, J. P. (2006). Vet Pathol 43, 463-470]. H5N1 virus was recovered from all organs sampled from two apparently healthy pigeons at 3 days post-infection and from the three pigeons which died spontaneously. All surviving birds shed virus via the oropharynx and the cloaca at minimal titres and seroconverted. Sentinel chickens reared in direct contact to the pigeons neither developed clinical signs nor seroconverted to the H5N1 virus.

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