Detection of feline herpesvirus-specific antibodies and DNA in aqueous humor from cats with or without uveitis

David J Maggs, Michael R. Lappin, Mark P. Nasisse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Objective - To determine whether uveitis in cats was associated with intraocular production of feline herpesvirus type 1 (FHV-1)-specific antibodies or with detection of FHV-1 DNA in aqueous humor (AH). Animals - 44 cats with idiopathic uveitis, 29 cats with uveitis attributed to Toxoplasma gondii infection, 13 FHV-1 seropositive cats without uveitis, and 9 FHV-1 seronegative cats without uveitis. Procedure - ELISA were used to detect FHV-1-specific antibodies and total IgG antibodies in serum and AH, and the Goldmann-Witmer coefficient (C-value) for intraocular antibody production was calculated. A polymerase chain reaction assay was used to detect FHV-1 DNA in AH. Results - FHV-1 seroprevalence among cats with uveitis was not significantly different from seroprevalence among cats without uveitis. Intraocular FHV-1 antibodies were never detected in cats without uveitis. Significantly more cats with idiopathic uveitis (22/44) or with toxoplasmic uveitis (11/29) had evidence of intraocular antibody production (C-value > 1) than did cats without uveitis. Only cats with idiopathic uveitis had FHV-1 C-values > 8. Among cats with evidence of intraocular antibody production, cats with idiopathic uveitis had a significantly higher median FHV-1 C-value (9.61) than did cats with toxoplasmic uveitis (2.56). Overall, FHV-1 DNA was detected in AH from 12 cats, 11 of which had uveitis. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Results suggest that FHV-1 can infect intraocular tissues of cats and that intraocular FHV-1 infection may be associated with uveal inflammation in some cats.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)932-936
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Veterinary Research
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1999
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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