Animal herpesviruses and their zoonotic potential for cross-species infection
More details
Hide details
Department of Poultry Viral Diseases, National Veterinary Research Institute, Pulawy, Poland
Corresponding author
Grzegorz Woźniakowski   

Department of Poultry Viral Diseases, National Veterinary Research Institute, Pulawy, Poland
Ann Agric Environ Med. 2015;22(2):191-194
Herpesviruses of humans and animals cause severe diseases that influence not only the health and epidemiological status but are also economically important in the context of food production. The members of Herpesviridae are host specific agents that also share many properties that potentially make them capable of crossing the species barriers. The objective of presented review paper was to summarize the relationship between herpesviruses of animals and humans and their zoonotic potential. In humans, the most epidemiologically important herpesviruses are represented by Human herepesvirus-1 and Human herpesvirus-2, which are commonly known as herpes simplex virus type 1 and 2, varicella-zooster virus (VZV), Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), Kaposi’s Sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV), cytomegalovirus (CMV), as well as Human herpesviruses: HHV-6A, HHV-6B, and HHV-7. However, in terms of the potential to cross the species barrier, there are a few herpesviruses, including B virus disease (CeHV-1), Marek’s disease virus (MDV), Equid herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1) or pseudorabies virus (PRV), which are potentially able to infect different hosts. To summarize, in advantageous conditions the host specific herpesviruses may pose a threat for public health but also may exert a negative impact on the economical aspects of animal production. The most probable of these are zoonotic infections caused by B virus disease; however, close contact between infected animal hosts and humans may lead to transmission and replication of other Herpesviridae members.
Beswick TS. The origin and the use of the word herpes. Med Hist. 1962; 6: 214–232.
Fields BN. Virology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, USA, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2007.
Sharma JM, Witter RL, Burmester BR, Landon JC. Public health implications of Marek’s disease virus and herpesvirus of turkeys. Studies on human and subhuman primates. J Natl Cancer Inst. 1973; 51(4): 1123–1128.
Benson PM, Malane SL, Banks R, Hicks CB, Hilliard J. B virus (Herpesvirus simiae) and human infection. Arch Dermatol. 1989; 125: 1247–1248.
Chiou SH, Chow KC, Yang CH, Chiang SF, Lin CH. Discovery of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-encoded RNA signal and EBV nuclear antigen leader protein DNA sequence in pet dogs. J Gen Virol. 2005; 86: 899–905.
Ehlers B, Dural G, Yasmum N, Lembo T, de TB, Ryser-Degiorgis MP, Ulrich RG, McGeoch DJ. Novel mammalian herpesviruses and lineages within the Gammaherpesvirinae: cospeciation and interspecies transfer. J Virol. 2008; 82: 3509–3516.
Ehlers B, Kuchler J, Yasmum N, Dural G, Voigt S, Schmidt-Chanasit J, Jakel T, Matuschka FR, Richter D, Essbauer S, Hughes DJ, Summers C, Bennett M, Stewart JP, Ulrich RG. Identification of novel rodent herpesviruses, including the first gammaherpesvirus of Mus musculus. J Virol. 2007; 81: 8091–8100.
Heldstab A, Ruedi D, Sonnabend W, Deinhardt F. Spontaneous generalized Herpesvirus hominis infection of a lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla). J Med Primatol. 1981; 10: 129–135.
Huff JL, Barry PA. B-virus (Cercopithecine herpesvirus 1) infection in humans and macaques: potential for zoonotic disease. Emerg Infect Dis. 2003; 9:246–250.
Marcaccini A, Lopez PM, Quiroga MI, Bermudez R, Nieto JM, Aleman N. Pseudorabies virus infection in mink: a host-specific pathogenesis. Vet Immunol Immunopathol. 2008; 124: 264–273.
Borchers K, Ludwig H. Simian agent 8--a herpes simplex-like monkey virus. Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis. 1991; 14: 125–132.
Melendez LV, Espana C, Hunt RD, Daniel MD, Garcia FG. Natural herpes simplex infection in the owl monkey (Aotus trivirgatus). Lab Anim Care. 1969; 19: 38–45.
Mravak S, Bienzle U, Feldmeier H, Hampl H, Habermehl KO. Pseudorabies in man. Lancet. 1987; 1: 501–502.
Parrish CR, Holmes EC, Morens DM, Park EC, Burke DS, Calisher CH, Laughlin CA, Saif LJ, Daszak P. Cross-species virus transmission and the emergence of new epidemic diseases. Microbiol Mol Biol Rev. 2008; 72: 457–470.
Tischer BK, Osterrieder N. Herpesviruses--a zoonotic threat? Vet Microbiol. 2010; 140(3–4): 266–270.
Glass CM, McLean RG, Katz JB, Maehr DS, Cropp CB, Kirk LJ, McKeirnan AJ, Evermann JF. Isolation of pseudorabies (Aujeszky’s disease) virus from a Florida panther. J Wildl Dis. 1994; 30: 180–184.
Kluge JP, Beran GW, Hill HT, Platt KB. Pseudorabies (Aujetszky’s disease). In: Leman, AD, Straw BE, Mengeling WL, D’Allaire S, Taylor DJ. Disease of Swine. Ames, Iowa State University Press, 1992.p.312–323.
Purchase HG, Witter RL. Public health concerns from human exposure to oncogenic avian herpesviruses. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1986; 189(11): 1430–1436.
Beaslej JN, Patterson LT, McWade DH. Transmission of Marek’s disease by poultry house dust and chicken dander. Am J Vet Res. 1970; 31(2): 339–344.
Calnek BW. Chicken neoplasma a model for cancer research. Br Poultr Sci. 1992; 33: 3–16.
Kalter SS, Heberling RL. Primate viral diseases in perspective. J Med Primatol. 1990; 19: 519–535.
Keeble SA, Christofinis GJ, Wood W. Natural virus-B infection in rhesus monkeys. J Pathol Bacteriol. 1958; 76: 189–199.
Matz-Rensing K, Jentsch KD, Rensing S, Langenhuyzen S, Verschoor E, Niphuis H, Kaup FJ. Fatal Herpes simplex infection in a group of common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus). Vet Pathol. 2003; 40: 405–411.
Schillaci MA, Jones-Engel L, Engel GA, Paramastri Y, Iskandar E, Wilson B, Allan JS, Kyes RC, Watanabe R, Grant R. Prevalence of enzootic simian viruses among urban performance monkeys in Indonesia. Trop Med Int Health. 2005; 10: 1305–1314.
Trapp S, von EJ, Hofmann H, Kostler J, Wild J, Wagner R, Beer M, Osterrieder N. Potential of equine herpesvirus 1 as a vector for immunization. J Virol. 2005; 79: 5445–5454.
Blair A, Zahm SH. Agricultural exposures and cancer. Environ Health Perspect. 1995; 103: 205–208.
McHatters GR, Scham RG. Bird viruses in multiple sclerosis: combination of viruses or Marek’s alone? Neurosci Lett. 1995; 188(2): 75–76.
Samorek-Salamonowicz E, Czekaj H, Kozdruń W. Marek’s disease herpes virus – apotential risk for human health. Medycyna Wet. 2003; 59(4): 293–296.
Emmons RW, Lennette EH. Natural herpesvirus hominis infection of a gibbon (Hylobates lar). Arch Gesamte Virusforsch. 1970; 31: 215–218.
Ramsay E, Stair EL, Castro AE, Marks MI. Fatal Herpesvirus hominis encephalitis in a white-handed gibbon. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1982; 181: 1429–1430.
Biesinger B, Muller-Fleckenstein I, Simmer B, Lang G, Wittmann S, Platzer E, Desrosiers RC, Fleckenstein B. Stable growth transformation of human T lymphocytes by herpesvirus saimiri. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 1992; 89: 3116–3119.
Griffiths RA, Boyne JR, Whitehouse A. Herpesvirus saimiri-based gene delivery vectors. Curr Gene Ther. 2006; 6: 1–15.
Freifeld AG, Hilliard J, Southers J, Murray M, Savarese B, Schmitt JM, Straus SE. A controlled seroprevalence survey of primate handlers for evidence of asymptomatic herpes B virus infection. J Infect Dis. 1995; 171: 1031–1034.
Rogers KM, Ritchey JW, Payton M, Black DH, Eberle R. Neuro-pathogenesis of herpesvirus papio 2 in mice parallels infection with Cercopithecine herpesvirus 1 (B virus) in humans. J Gen Virol. 2006; 87: 267–276.
Kishi M, Harada H, Takahashi M, Tanaka A, Hayashi M, Nonoyama M, Josephs SF, Buchbinder A, Schachter F, Ablashi DV. A repeat sequence, GGGTTA, is shared by DNA of human herpesvirus 6 and Marek’s disease virus. J Virol. 1988; 62(12): 4824–4827.
Makari JG. Association between Marek’s herpesvirus and human cancer. I. Detection of cross-reacting antigens between chicken tumors and human tumors. Oncology 1973; 28(2): 164–176.
Ronco G, Costa G, Lynge E. Cancer risk among Danish and Italian farmers. Br J Ind Med. 1992; 49(4): 220–225.
Naito M, Ono K, Doi T, Kato S, Tanabe S. Antibodies in human and monkey sera to herpes-type virus from a chicken with Marek’s disease and to EB virus detected by the immunofluorescence test. Biken J. 1971; 14(2): 161–166.
Laurent S, Esnault E, Dambrine G, Goudeau A, Choudat D, Rasschaert D. Detection of avian oncogenic Marek’s disease herpesvirus DNA in human sera. J Gen Virol. 2001; 82: 233–240.
Hennig H, Osterrieder N, Muller-Steinhardt M, Teichert HM, Kirchner H, Wandinger KP. Detection of Marek’s disease virus DNA in chicken but not in human plasma. J Clin Microbiol. 2003; 41: 2428–2432.
Hennig H, Wessel K, Sondermeijer P, Kirchner H, Wandinger KP. Lack of evidence for Marek’s disease virus genomic sequences in leukocyte DNA from multiple sclerosis patients in Germany. Neurosci Lett. 1998; 250: 138–140.
McStreet GH, Elkunk RB, Latiwonk QI. Investigations of environmental conditions during cluster indicate probable vectors of unknown exogenous agent(s) of multiple sclerosis. Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis. 1992; 15: 75–77.
Journals System - logo
Scroll to top