Article Text

Rapid diagnosis of equine influenza
  1. G Anestad and
  2. O Maagaard
  1. Department of Virology, National Institute of Public Health, Oslo, Norway.


During an epizootic of equine influenza in Norway caused by influenza A/equine (H3N8) virus the efficacy of rapid virus diagnosis by the indirect immunofluorescence technique was evaluated. The antiserum used in the test was a polyclonal influenza A virus antiserum with reactivity directed mainly against the common nucleoprotein and matrix protein. This antiserum possessed sufficient reactivity for the detection of virus-infected exfoliated nasopharyngeal cells. Nasopharyngeal smear samples from 92 horses were examined and a positive diagnosis was obtained for 57 (62 per cent). Paired serum samples were collected from 62 horses and, compared with the haemagglutination inhibition test, the rapid virus diagnosis test had a specificity and sensitivity of 95 per cent and 80 per cent, respectively.

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