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Natural Borna disease virus infection in cats in the United Kingdom
  1. N. A. Reeves, BSc1,
  2. C. R. Helps, BSc, PhD1,
  3. D. A. Gunn-Moore, BSc, BVM&S, PhD, MRCVS2,
  4. C. Blundell, BVetMed, MRCVS3,
  5. P. L. Finnemore1,
  6. G. R. Pearson, BVMS, PhD, MRCPath, MRCVS2 and
  7. D. A. Harbour, BSc, PhD1
  1. 1 Division of Molecular and Cellular Biology
  2. 2 Department of Pathology and Microbiology
  3. 3 Division of Companion Animals, Department of Clinical Veterinary Science, University of Bristol School of Veterinary Science, Langford House, Langford, Bristol BS40 5DU


Borna disease virus (BDV) is a novel PNA virus that has only recently been characterised and classified in a new virus family, Bornaviridae. The virus was detected in buffy coat cells from four of five cats with neurological disease and in the brains of five of 15 cats with nervous signs and of one of three cats with non-neurological disease. In a serosurvey of 111 cats the incidence of antibody to BDV in cats with neurological disease was higher than in cats with other types of disease, suggesting that the virus may play a role in nervous diseases of cats in the UK.

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