Use of real-time PCR to detect canine parvovirus in feces of free-ranging wolves

Mech LD, Almberg ES, Smith D, Goyal S, Singer RS

Using real-time PCR, we tested 15 wolf (Canis lupus) feces from the Superior National Forest (SNF), Minnesota, USA, and 191 from Yellowstone National Park (YNP), USA, collected during summer and 13 during winter for canine parvovirus (CPV)-2 DNA. We also tested 20 dog feces for CPV-2 DNA. The PCR assay was 100% sensitive and specific with a minimum detection threshold of 10(4) 50% tissue culture infective dose. Virus was detected in two winter specimens but none of the summer specimens. We suggest applying the technique more broadly especially with winter feces.

Journal of Wildlife Diseases 48(2):473-476