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Open Access Herpesvirus papio 2: Alternative Antigen for Use in Monkey B Virus Diagnostic Assays

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Background and Purpose: Serologic testing for antibody to monkey B virus (BV) in macaque sera is problematic due to the biohazardous nature of BV and BV antigens. Herpesvirus papio 2 (HVP2), a herpesvirus of baboons, is more closely related genetically and antigenically to BV than is human herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV1). The potential for use of HVP2 relative to HSV1 as an alternative test antigen for detection of anti-BV antibody in macaque sera was assessed.

Methods: Standard ELISA formats were developed, using BV-, HVP2-, and HSV1-infected cell extracts. Performance of the HVP2 and HSV1 tests was assessed relative to that of the BV test.

Results: Using the BV antigen ELISA, 349 sera from 7 macaque species were tested, and results were classified as positive (253), negative (94), or suspect (2). The ELISA using HVP2 antigen detected 98.0% of BV-positive sera (248 of 253), whereas the HSV1-based ELISA detected only 96.0% (243 of 253). All three ELISAs identified the same two samples as suspect, and the HSV1 ELISA identified three additional BV-positive sera as suspect.

Conclusions: The HVP2 antigen-based ELISA was equal in sensitivity and specificity to the BV antigenbased ELISA and was superior to the HSV1 ELISA for detection of BV-positive macaque sera. In addition, the HVP2 ELISA has greater laboratory safety, compared with BV antigen use for ELISA testing.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Infectious Diseases and Physiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma

Publication date: 1999-12-01

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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