May 23, 2011 Recommended diagnostic tests for possible Equine Herpesvirus ‐1 (EHV‐1)
While the Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) is investigating approximately 20 horses for potential exposure to the neurologic form of Equine Herpesvirus ‐1 (EHV ‐1) disease, many horse owners have contacted the Texas Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory (TVMDL) to test their horses for EHV ‐1.
TVMDL strongly recommends that horse owners who want to test their animals for EHV ‐1 request Equine Herpesvirus type 1 PCR (EHV‐1 PCR). Turnaround time for PCR is no more than five working days. Acceptable samples are nasal swabs and whole blood (EDTA). For euthanized animals or abortion cases, we recommend fresh tissues (liver, spleen, brain), aborted fetus or placenta. In these cases, suitable tests are EHV‐1 PCR and histopathology EHV 1 is a reportable disease to the Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) and an accredited veterinarian must be involved in the specimen submission process. If clinical disease is suspected nasal swabs and whole blood (EDTA) may also be submitted for virus isolation. Specimens should be submitted by overnight courier. Results from virus isolation require a two week turnaround time.
Serology testing from a single sample has no diagnostic value due to widespread EHV‐1 exposure and vaccination in the general equine population.
Please send purple tops and/or nasal swabs to TVMDL’s College Station laboratory:
Texas Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory
1 Sippel Rd.
College Station, TX 77843
If owners or their veterinarians have any questions or concerns about diagnostic testing for EHV‐1, please contact TVMDL: Phone (979) 845‐3414
Toll Free (888) 646‐5623
Fax (979) 845‐1794
For authoritative news and information about EHV‐1, TVMDL suggests the TAHC web site at http://www.tahc.state.tx.us