Investigating the Circulation of Ebola Viruses in Bats during the Ebola Virus Disease Outbreaks in the Equateur and North Kivu Provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo from 2018 - Université de Montpellier Accéder directement au contenu
Article Dans Une Revue Pathogens Année : 2021

Investigating the Circulation of Ebola Viruses in Bats during the Ebola Virus Disease Outbreaks in the Equateur and North Kivu Provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo from 2018

Jacques Likofata
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Résumé

With 12 of the 31 outbreaks, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is highly affected by Ebolavirus disease (EVD). To better understand the role of bats in the ecology of Ebola viruses, we conducted surveys in bats during two recent EVD outbreaks and in two areas with previous outbreaks. Dried blood spots were tested for antibodies to ebolaviruses and oral and rectal swabs were screened for the presence of filovirus using a broadly reactive semi-nested RT-PCR. Between 2018 and 2020, 892 (88.6%) frugivorous and 115 (11.4%) insectivorous bats were collected. Overall, 11/925 (1.2%) to 100/925 (10.8%) bats showed antibodies to at least one Ebolavirus antigen depending on the positivity criteria. Antibodies were detected in fruit bats from the four sites and from species previously documented to harbor Ebola antibodies or RNA. We tested for the first time a large number of bats during ongoing EVD outbreaks in DRC, but no viral RNA was detected in the 676 sampled bats. Our study illustrates the difficulty to document the role of bats as a source of Ebolaviruses as they might clear quickly the virus. Given the increasing frequency of EVD outbreaks, more studies on the animal reservoir are urgently needed.
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hal-03652563 , version 1 (26-04-2022)

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Audrey Lacroix, Placide Mbala Kingebeni, Simon Pierre Ndimbo Kumugo, Guy Lempu, Christelle Butel, et al.. Investigating the Circulation of Ebola Viruses in Bats during the Ebola Virus Disease Outbreaks in the Equateur and North Kivu Provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo from 2018. Pathogens, 2021, 10 (5), pp.557. ⟨10.3390/pathogens10050557⟩. ⟨hal-03652563⟩
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