All 34 pet cats were tested for hybridization with domestic pet cats and found to be genetically pure wildcats [29, 30]

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All 34 pet cats were tested for hybridization with domestic pet cats and found to be genetically pure wildcats [29, 30]. FIV antibodies and FeLV antigens were identified using the SNAP? FIV/FeLV Combo Test (IDEXX Laboratories Inc., Westbrook, Maine, USA). regarded as. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (10.1007/s00705-018-3972-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users. While ranging from the Iberian Peninsula to Eastern Europe, the current distribution of the Western wildcat (Schreber, 1777) is definitely strongly fragmented as a result of extermination by humans since the 17th century. Due to strict legal safety C the wildcat is definitely outlined in Annexe IV of the EU Habitats and Varieties Directive C the varieties is slowly recovering in Western and Central Europe [11, 15], where hybridisation with home pet cats however remains a serious conservation danger [11]. To optimise conservation attempts, regional and national government bodies possess consequently developed specific conservation plans for the varieties [4, 25]. Understanding the prevalence of diseases in the wildcat human population can be important in this context [25]. Viral infections in particular can have a severe bad effect on populations of threatened varieties [20, 22]. The most important viruses of home pet cats (Linnaeus, 1758) are feline leukemia disease (FeLV), feline immunodeficiency disease (FIV), feline coronavirus (FCoV), feline calicivirus (FCV), feline herpesvirus (FHV) and feline parvovirus (FPV). FeLV is one of the most common causes of death in pet cats worldwide, including the highly endangered Iberian lynx (Temminck, 1827) [20]. Transmission generally happens through close contact between animals, and frequent connection puts pet cats and kittens at particular SB 399885 HCl risk of illness [9, 18]. The cosmopolitan FIV induces an immunodeficiency syndrome and is transmitted primarily by bites and sometimes during mating, but can also be transmitted transplacentally, perinatally or galactogenically [10]. The orally transmitted, cosmopolitan FCoV sometimes causes enteritis and may induce fatal peritonitis [2]. Cats of all ages can become infected, with kittens becoming vulnerable when the safety by maternal antibodies decreases [9, 18]. FCV and FHV both cause top respiratory tract diseases in pet cats. FCV is transmitted by contact with saliva and additional respiratory tract secretions [18]. Illness with FHV primarily results from direct mucosal contact with latently infected animals [9], putting kittens at particular risk of illness [14]. Finally, FPV causes panleukopenia, a disease that causes high mortality worldwide, especially among kittens after the decrease of maternal antibodies [28]. All secretions and excrements are infectious, and the pathogens high resistance allows indirect transmission [8, 9, 18]. Western populations of free-ranging wildcats have been shown to be exposed to cat viruses [5, 7, 21]. Given the potential severity of the connected diseases, it is important to monitor their event, especially in areas where frequent and close contact between free-ranging wildcats and home pet cats is likely. Luxembourg has a central geographic location in the largest continuous western European wildcat population, which stretches from north-western France and southern Belgium to western and central Germany [16, 29]. The panorama of Luxembourg is definitely highly fragmented, [13] and hybridisation rates between home pet cats and wildcats are relatively high compared to neighbouring areas in Germany [29, 30]. Given that higher contact rates are likely, a higher risk of viral transmission between the two subspecies in the country is also likely. We therefore targeted to assess the seroprevalence of SB 399885 HCl the major cat viruses in the Luxembourg wildcat human population and to determine factors that clarify their prevalence. Between 2001 and 2016, 34 road-killed wildcats were collected in Luxembourg and stored at -20C. During dissection, we collected tissue samples for genetic analysis and 1-5 ml of blood from the heart or the chest cavity. Blood SB 399885 HCl samples were centrifuged for 15 min at 1000using SB 399885 HCl an EBA 200 benchtop centrifuge (Hettich, Tuttlingen, Germany). The detection of FIV antibodies and FeLV antigens was carried out immediately, and the remaining sera were stored at -20C until further analysis. The age of the wildcats was identified based on incremental growth lines in the enamel of a lower-jaw canine [1]. After demineralization with 5 % nitric acid (HNO3), the teeth were cross-sectioned (width, 5 m) having a rotary BMP2 microtome (RM 2050, Leica Biosystems Nussloch GmbH, Germany) and stained with hematoxylin-eosin. The growth lines were counted under a B1-220A light microscope (Motic, Wetzlar, Germany) SB 399885 HCl at 40-100 magnification. Following Piechocki and Stiefel [24], animals were either classified as subadults ( 24 months; one growth collection) or adults ( 25 weeks; two or more growth lines). The dataset consisted of 23 adults and 11 subadults (comprising 19 males and 15 females). All 34 pet cats were tested for hybridization with home cats and found to be genetically genuine wildcats.