About 15% of cats in Wuhan infected with novel coronavirus, researchers say
Chinese vets have collected blood samples from 100 stray and house cats from Wuhan, finding that about 15% of them have been infected with the novel coronavirus. Their research was published on the bioRxiv website, TASS reports.
"Previous studies suggested cat could be a potential susceptible animal of SARS-CoV-2. Here, we investigated the infection of SARS-CoV-2 in cats by detecting specific serum antibodies," the abstract to the research article informs.
"A cohort of serum samples were collected from cats in Wuhan, including 102 sampled after COVID-19 outbreak, and 39 prior to the outbreak. 15 of 102 (14.7%) cat sera collected after the outbreak were positive for the receptor binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2 by indirect enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA)," the researchers inform.
"Our data demonstrates that SARS-CoV-2 has infected cat population in Wuhan during the outbreak," the abstract concludes.
The SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, which causes the COVID-19 disease, can enter the body of humans and other mammals, including monkeys, ferrets and cats, which are affected by the infection nearly to the same extent as humans.