Hantavirus

Diagnostic spectrum

General information

In rats and mice, hantaviruses lead to a persistent infection and it is assumed they are permanently excreted in the urine, as well as through faeces and saliva, without the animals showing any symptoms. Hantaviruses as specific to individual rodent species and only very rarely spread to other species. Rodents are infected in the burrow, in territorial fights or while rearing the young.

It is a zooanthroponosis which leads to severe medical conditions in humans. In Europe, the clinical picture is mainly dominated by fever and nephropathies (dialysis required) or haemorrhages.