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Open Access Polyomaviruses of Nonhuman Primates: Implications for Research

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Polyomaviruses are a family of small nonenveloped DNA viruses that infect birds and mammals. At least 7 nonhuman primate polyomaviruses that occur in macaques, African green monkeys, marmosets baboons, and chimpanzees have been described, as well as 4 polyomaviruses that occur in humans. Simian virus 40 (SV40), which infects macaques, was the first nonhuman primate polyomavirus identified as a contaminant of early polio vaccines. Primate polyomaviruses cause inapparent primary infections but persist in the host and can cause severe disease in situations of immunocompromise. This review describes the primate polyomaviruses, and the diseases associated with the viruses of macaques. In macaques, the greatest current concerns are the potential confounding of study results by polyomavirus infections and the zoonotic potential of SV40.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Charles River Laboratories, Wilmington, MA, USA. [email protected]

Publication date: 2008-02-01

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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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