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Vet Microbiol. 2008 Sep 18;131(1-2):26-34. doi: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2008.02.028. Epub 2008 Mar 7.

First isolation of EBLV-2 in Germany.

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  • 1Friedrich-Loeffler-Institute, Federal Research Institute for Animal Health, WHO Collaborating Centre for Rabies Surveillance and Research, 16868 Wusterhausen, Germany.


In Europe, rabies in bats is caused by European Bat Lyssavirus (EBLV) type 1 (EBLV-1) or type 2 (EBLV-2) which form two distinct genotypes (gt 5 and 6) within the genus Lyssavirus of the family of Rhadoviridae. Spill-over infections of EBLV in humans have caused fatal rabies encephalitis and highlighted the relevance of this wildlife disease for public health. The vast majority of the 831 European bat rabies cases reported between 1977 and 2006 were identified as EBLV-1. Only few virus isolates originating from Switzerland, The Netherlands and the United Kingdom were characterized as EBLV-2. Here we report the first EBLV-2 case detected in Germany in a Daubenton's bat (Myotis daubentonii) in August 2007. The bat showed clinical signs of disorders of the central nervous system and subsequently tested positive for rabies. The virus was isolated and characterized as EBLV-2 based on its antigen pattern and by nucleotide sequencing. Phylogenetic analysis indicated an association to EBLV-2 isolates from Switzerland which correlates with the origin of the bat close to the Swiss border.

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