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Keywords:

  • animals;
  • anti-hepatitis E antibodies;
  • experimental transmission;
  • India

Prevalence of IgG antibodies to hepatitis E virus (IgG-anti-HEV) was determined among different animal species from India. Seropositivity varied from 4.4% to 6.9% in cattle, 54.6–74.4% in pigs and 2.1–21.5% in rodents. Of the 44 dogs screened, 10 were positive (22.7%). None of the 250 goat sera tested were found to be anti-HEV positive. Among rodents, over 50% serum samples collected in 1985 from Bandicota bengalensis were positive for anti-HEV antibodies. No evidence of HEV infection was obtained following experimental inoculation of an Indian strain (AKL-90) of HEV into anti-HEV negative pigs and goats. The results document varied prevalence of anti-HEV antibodies in different animal species from India and of inability of Indian pigs and goats to support replication of at least one human strain of HEV.