Borna Disease (BD) is an often fatal meningoencephalitis reported in a number of animal species including cats. It manifests as ataxia and behavioral changes and is also known as staggering disease. The virus of Borna Disease (BDV) has been found in healthy as well as symptomatic cats. In this report, 199 domestic cats in the Tokyo area were tested for antibodies to the BDV to document infection with the virus.
Over 25% of cats tested were seropositive for the virus, including healthy cats and cats with neurologic disease. Even very young cats were found to have antibody. No correlation with neurologic disease was identified. Thus, the authors conclude that additional factors to virus infection must be required for Borna Disease to manifest in cats. (MK)