Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Prevalence of infection of canine distemper virus, feline immunodeficiency virus, and feline leukemia virus in wild Ecuadorian ocelots; efficacy of their diagnosis, and recovery from infection.

Abstract

This retrospective study provides an analysis of the prevalence and detectability of canine distemper virus (CDV), feline leukemia virus (FeLV), and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) in ocelots (Leopardus pardalis) sheltered in a wild animal recovery center in Guayaquil, Ecuador. Blood samples of 19 rescued ocelots from 2019-20 were analyzed using FeLV p27 antigen enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) and commercial insulated isothermal reverse transcriptase PCR (iiRT-PCR) kits. Using this PCR we detected positive results for CDV (4/ 17; 23.5%) and FeLV (14/16; 87.5%), but not for FIV (0/8). Three previously positive cases of CDV and two of FeLV showed negative results on retesting 6 mo later. Moreover, a third analysis was conducted and was negative for CDV. Our results suggest that ocelots can recover from the local CDV and FeLV strains. An ELISA for the FeLV p27 antigen showed no capability to detect FeLV in ocelots that were confirmed positive by iiRT-PCR. Regional lineages, viral virulence, and host immune response capabilities should be addressed in further research to inform management and decision making for wildlife conservation.