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1 March 2015 EVALUATION OF CAPTIVE GIBBONS (HYLOBATES SPP., NOMASCUS SPP., SYMPHALANGUS SPP.) IN NORTH AMERICAN ZOOLOGICAL INSTITUTIONS FOR GIBBON APE LEUKEMIA VIRUS (GALV)
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Abstract

This study evaluated 79 captive gibbons (Hylobates, Nomascus, and Symphalangus spp.) within 30 North American zoological institutions for evidence of exposure to and possible infection with gibbon ape leukemia virus (GALV). Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) on gibbon serum samples revealed the presence of antibodies against GALV antigens in 28% of animals, indicating previous exposure or possibly protective immunity to GALV. Virus detection in gibbon blood or serum using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or co-culture of gibbon peripheral blood mononuclear cells with human cells was negative for all samples submitted. The majority (19/27, 70%) of animals with reported health conditions were clinically healthy at the time of sample collection. Historically accrued clinical data were used to assess association of diseases in gibbons antibody positive for GALV. The results suggest captive gibbons could mount an immune response to GALV and show no evidence of infection. There was no association with neoplastic conditions in seropositive animals. The potential role of gibbons as a reservoir for GALV and the role of GALV as an epizoonotic-zoonotic agent or as a contributor to gibbon ape morbidity and mortality are not substantiated by the study findings.

American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
Jessica L. Siegal-Willott, Nathaniel Jensen, David Kim, Dwayne Taliaferro, Tiffany Blankenship, Becky Malinsky, Suzan Murray, Maribeth V. Eiden, and Wenqin Xu "EVALUATION OF CAPTIVE GIBBONS (HYLOBATES SPP., NOMASCUS SPP., SYMPHALANGUS SPP.) IN NORTH AMERICAN ZOOLOGICAL INSTITUTIONS FOR GIBBON APE LEUKEMIA VIRUS (GALV)," Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 46(1), 27-33, (1 March 2015). https://doi.org/10.1638/2014-0034R.1
Received: 21 February 2014; Published: 1 March 2015
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