An outbreak of Mayaro virus disease in Belterra, Brazil. III. Entomological and ecological studies

A. L. Hoch, N. E. Peterson, J. W. LeDuc, F. P. Pinheiro

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82 Scopus citations


Results of entomological and vertebrate host investigations made during dual outbreaks of Mayaro (MAY) and yellow fever (YF) viruses in Belterra, Para, Brazil in 1978 are reported. Over 9,000 insects representing 26 species were assayed in 396 pools for the presence of arboviruses. Pools of Haemagogus janthinomys Dyar yielded the only isolates of either MAY or YF virus. The minimum field infection rate for nine isolates of MAY virus from Hg. janthinomys was 1:82, and for two isolates of YF virus was 1:368. Analysis of collection data showed Hg. janthinomys to be attracted to man as a blood source and present in all habitats sampled, although most abundant in the forest canopy. Twelve hundred bird sera and 584 mammal sera were tested by hemagglutination-inhibition (HI) tests for antibody to MAY virus. Highest MAY antibody prevalence rates were found among marmosets (Callithrix argentata, 32 positive of 119 tested, 27%). Mayaro virus was also isolated from the blood of a sylvan marmoset captured at the peak of the MAY virus outbreak. Experimental infection of marmosets with MAY virus confirmed that a substantial viremia follows infection with this virus. Marmosets were also found with HI antibody to YF virus (5/119, 4%). The results presented indicate that Hg. janthinomys was the principal vector of both MAY and YF viruses and that marmosets were the main amplifying hosts for MAY virus, and perhaps for YF virus as well.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)689-698
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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