rodent and rabbit assay data sheet
Rat coronavirus (SDAV)
S0143 - Ultrasensitive qualitative detection of rat coronavirus (Sialodacryoadenitis
virus or SDAV) by reverse transcription coupled real time PCR
coronavirus or Sialodacryoadenitis (SDA) virus is an airborne
RNA virus whose primary route of infection is via respiratory
aerosol. Contact with feces, food, bedding, cages or other
fomites can also spread the disease. Infection of laboratory
rats with this virus has been a major problem in animal
facilities in many countries (Lussier and Descôteaux, 1986).
Because of the
airborne route of infection, SDAV is highly contagious in rat
colonies. The infection is generally not fatal, but it weakens
animals’ immune systems, allowing secondary bacterial infections
that can be fatal. If the animals are undergoing research
experiments, SDAV infection may compromise interpretation of
with rat coronavirus begin to show symptoms as early as 5 days,
with respiratory involvement and cervical swelling by 7-8 days.
The infection often presents as a characteristic inflammation of
submaxillary and parotid salivary glands, which can result in
tissue necrosis. Cervical lymph nodes and/or the harderian and
intraorbital lacrimal glands behind the eyes may also be
affected. As a result, bulging eyes, ocular lesions, facial
swelling, lacerations, porphyrin discharge, bleeding or
squinting due to photosensitivity may be observed. Sometimes
symptoms may give the appearance of a shortened or swollen neck.
In extreme cases, eyesight can be lost or compromised
permanently due to the infection or from self-mutilation caused
by scratching. Eye bulging may take several weeks to subside due
to retro-orbital swelling.
Not all rats
infected with SDAV show symptoms; some become carriers and pass
the virus to other animals in a colony.
Serological detection of the virus is of limited value
because it takes 2 to 3 weeks after initial exposure (ie 1 to 2
weeks after clinical symptoms appear) for a detectable immune
response to develop. Therefore, testing clinically affected rats
using only serology methods often yields false negative results.
Molecular detection of this virus by PCR, in contrast, is rapid,
sensitive and specific, and is useful even immediately following
Help confirm the disease causing agent
Shorten the time required to confirm a clinical
diagnosis of SDAV
Help ensure that rat colonies are free of SDAV
Early prevention of spread of SDAV among a population or
in a geographic area
Minimize human exposure to SDAV
Safety monitoring of biological products that derive
Lussier, G. and
Descôteaux, J.P. (1986) Prevalence of natural virus infections
in laboratory mice and rats used in Canada. Lab Anim Sci.
1 fecal pellet, or 0.2 ml whole blood in EDTA (purple top) or
ACD (yellow top) tube, or respiratory swab, or ocular swab.
Contact Zoologix if advice is needed to determine an appropriate specimen type for a specific diagnostic application. For specimen types not listed here, please contact Zoologix to confirm specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.
For all specimen types, if there will be a delay in shipping, or
during very warm weather, refrigerate specimens until shipped
and ship with a cold pack unless more stringent shipping
requirements are specified. Frozen specimens should be shipped
so as to remain frozen in transit. See
shipping instructions for more information.
2 business days
reverse transcription coupled real time polymerase chain