The prevalence of rabies neutralizing antibodies (NA) in sera of wild animals from São Paulo City (Brazil) was investigated using the Rapid Fluorescent Focus Inhibition Test between 1994 and 1997. Sera from 547 specimens were examined. Marsupials represented 45% of the sample and primates 37%; carnivores, rodents, deer and edentates represented 6, 6, 3 and 2%, respectively. The overall prevalence of NA was 14%. The prevalence of NA was 18% in primates; whereas in marsupials, carnivores, edentates and rodents it was 13, 9, 8 and 6%, respectively. The stratification according to sex, age, and site of capture of the marsupials and primates showed a small predominance in males versus females and a large predominance of adults versus juveniles. The same relationship was seen in specimens captured near human habitations versus specimens captured in their own habitat. It is evident that there is circulation of rabies virus in wild animals, which are not recommended as pets since they represent a potential risk of exposure to rabies virus for both humans and domestic animals.
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Vol. 37 • No. 2