The work, published in the journal Science, confirms the ability of cats to be infected with SARS-CoV-2 and transmit it to others cats. In addition to them, the virus was able to infect ferrets, but the other tested domestic animals were to him almost insensible.
That cats can be infected with SARS-CoV-2 appeared in February, but now this hypothesis is confirmed by a number of studies. They — unlike other domestic animals the receptor ACE2 is very similar to human. We recently reportedthat Wuhan cats found in the blood of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, — a sign that they had COVID-19, and just a few days ago, it was reported infected by a tiger at new York zoo from the Minister. At the same time the Center for control and prevention of diseases of the U.S. recommended infected to limit contact not only with people but also with animals to infect. Determination of the range of animals susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 will not only help to protect their Pets, but may find an intermediate host, from which the virus got to humans.
Jiangjun Shi (Shi Jianzhong) and his colleagues at the Harbin veterinary research Institute decided to experiment with whether different receptive domestic animals to SARS-CoV-2 and if so can they infect someone else. They tested the ferrets and cats, as most have a similar structure ACE2 animals as well as dogs, pigs, chickens and ducks. Animals burying his nose in the virus and a few days later looked at to see if viral RNA in their tissues.
The most susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 was ferrets and cats. At first the virus was able to multiply in the upper respiratory tract, but did not cause serious disease and did not lead to death. The cats on the third and sixth day of viral RNA were found not only in the upper respiratory tract, but also in the lungs, and histological examination of these bodies showed their defeat.
In addition, they were able to transmit the virus to each other. It has been tested on three pairs of animals in which one animal buried the viruses and the other just lived in a neighbouring infected animal cell, separated by a four-centimeter opening. A week later the virus was detected in swabs from the nose of one of the cats, neighbours, and after three weeks she had found antibodies to the virus. This suggests that cats are susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 and can pass each other by airborne droplets.