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Canadian Journal of Infectious Diseases
Volume 2, Issue 3, Pages 95-100
Original Article

Imported Arbovirus Infections in Canada 1974-89

Harvey Artsob and Leslie Spence

National Arbovirus Reference Service, Department of Microbiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Received 27 August 1990; Accepted 11 December 1990

Copyright © 1991 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


From 1974 to 1989, sera from symptomatic patients with histories of recent travel outside Canada were tested for antibodies to several arboviruses, principally of the alphavirus and flavivirus families. Diagnostic seroconversions were documented in 84 individuals from six provinces, including one alphavirus (Chikungunya) and 83 flavivirus seroconvertors. Dengue 1 virus was isolated from the blood of one patient. Most flavivirus seroconvertors were likely infected with dengue virus, but infections with tick-borne encephalitis, St Louis encephalitis and Powassan viruses were also recognized. Patients had histories of recent travel to the Caribbean, South America, Asia, Africa, North America (outside Canada), Tahiti, Fiji and Europe. Possible imported infections due to Japanese encephalitis, Ross River, western equine encephalitis and Colorado tick fever viruses were also encountered.