Camelids and cattle are dead-end hosts for peste-des-petits-ruminants virus
Peste-des-petits-ruminants virus (PPRV) causes a severe respiratory disease in small ruminants. The possible impact of different atypical host species in the spread and planed worldwide eradication of PPRV remains to be clarified. Recent transmission trials with the virulent PPRV lineage IV (LIV)-strain Kurdistan/2011 revealed that pigs and wild boar are possible sources of PPRV-infection. We therefore investigated the role of cattle, llamas, alpacas, and dromedary camels in transmission trials using the Kurdistan/2011 strain for intranasal infection and integrated a literature review for a proper evaluation of their host traits and role in PPRV-transmission. Cattle and camelids developed no clinical signs, no viremia, shed no or only low PPRV-RNA loads in swab samples and did not transmit any PPRV to the contact animals. The distribution of PPRV-RNA or antigen in lymphoid organs was similar in cattle and camelids although generally lower compared to suids and small ruminants. In the typical small ruminant hosts, the tissue tropism, pathogenesis and disease expression after PPRV-infection is associated with infection of immune and epithelial cells via SLAM and nectin-4 receptors, respectively. We therefore suggest a different pathogenesis in cattle and camelids and both as dead-end hosts for PPRV.