Communications Biology (Nov 2021)

Incrimination of shrews as a reservoir for Powassan virus

  • Heidi K. Goethert,
  • Thomas N. Mather,
  • Richard W. Johnson,
  • Sam R. Telford

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 4, no. 1
pp. 1 – 8


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Goethert and colleagues use a host-specific retrotransposon targeted real time PCR assay on questing nymphal ticks to identify a reservoir for Powassan virus lineage 2 (or deer tick virus). Infected ticks were found to have preferentially fed on shrews, as opposed to white-footed mice as was expected, suggesting that they may be a reservoir host for this virus.