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Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Infectious Diseases
Volume 2010, Article ID 709791, 6 pages
Review Article

Animal Models of CNS Viral Disease: Examples from Borna Disease Virus Models

Department of Internal Medicine (Neurology) and Medical Microbiology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB, Canada R3A 1R9

Received 1 October 2009; Accepted 8 December 2009

Academic Editor: Guey Chuen Perng

Copyright © 2010 Marylou V. Solbrig. 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.


Borna disease (BD), caused by the neurotropic RNA virus, Borna Disease virus, is an affliction ranging from asymptomatic to fatal meningoencephalitis across naturally and experimentally infected warmblooded (mammalian and bird) species. More than 100 years after the first clinical descriptions of Borna disease in horses and studies beginning in the 1980's linking Borna disease virus to human neuropsychiatric diseases, experimentally infected rodents have been used as models for examining behavioral, neuropharmacological, and neurochemical responses to viral challenge at different stages of life. These studies have contributed to understanding the role of CNS viral injury in vulnerability to behavioral, developmental, epileptic, and neurodegenerative diseases and aided evaluation of the proposed and still controversial links to human disease.