Sero-prevalence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) specific antibodies in dromedary camels in Tabuk, Saudi Arabia.J Med Virol. 2018 08; 90(8):1285-1289.JM
The Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a novel Coronavirus which was responsible of the first case of human acute respiratory syndrome in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), 2012. Dromedary camels are considered as potential reservoirs for the virus and seem to be the only animal host which may transmit the infection to human. Further studies are required to better understand the animal sources of zoonotic transmission route and the risks of this infection. A primary sero-prevalence study of MERS-CoV preexisting neutralizing antibodies in Dromedary camel serum was conducted in Tabuk, western north region of KSA, in order to assess the seopositivity of these animals and to explain their possible role in the transmission of the infection to Human. One hundred seventy one (171) serum samples were collected from healthy dromedary camels with different ages and genders in Tabuk city and tested for specific serum IgG by ELISA using the receptor-binding S1 subunits of spike proteins of MERS-CoV. 144 (84,21%) of the total camel sera shown the presence of protein-specific antibodies against MERS-CoV. These results may provide evidence that MERS-CoV has previously infected dromedary camels in Tabuk and may support the possible role of camels in the human infection.