FELINE COWPOX AETIOLOGY
Cowpox virus is member of the orthopoxvirus group in the family
Poxviridae Other orthopoxviruses include smallpox virus, now eradicated, vaccinia
virus (the modern smallpox vaccine), infectious ectromelia virus of mice, monkeypox
and camelpox viruses, and racoonpox and California volepox viruses.
All the orthopoxviruses are very closely related and antigenically
extremely similar. However, each can be identified by a combination of biological
minor serological differences and genome analysis.
The orthopoxviruses must not be confused with the parapoxviruses
such as pseudocowpox and orf viruses. Although both genera are members of the
Poxviridae, each genus has a different morphology of the virus particle and there
is no useful immunological relationship between the two.
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