Wróblewska-Łuczka, P., Chmielewska-Badora, J., Zwoliński, J., Galińska, E. M., Adamczuk, P., Żukiewicz-Sobczak, W., Zagórski, J. and Wojtyła, A. 2017. Seroepidemiologic Evaluation of Exposure to Infection with Hantavirus (serotype Puumala) Among Forestry

   The genus Hantavirus belongs to a large family of viruses Bunyaviridae. In humans, infection happens through the respiratory system (inhalation of secretions of infected rodents with dust) or through the direct contact with a rodent. The bank vole (Myodes glareolus), which inhabits areas of almost the whole of Europe, is especially responsible for the transmission of hantavirus serotype Puumala. The primary goal of the study was evaluation of the state of health of forestry workers by laboratory diagnosis of diseases caused by hantaviruses serotype Puumala. The study covered a group of 820 randomly selected workers of the State Forests from 32 Forest Districts located in the area of the whole Poland. The results show that the largest number of seropositive results among forestry workers was obtained in the Regions of Łódź, Rzeszów and Bydgoszcz. The largest number of positive results, 3 (11.5%), were noted in the Piotrków Trybunalski Forestry District in the Łódź Region. In the whole of Poland, 12 seropositive results were noted (1.5%) and 26 doubtful (3.2%). The distribution of the positive and doubtful results obtained may suggest that in given regions large populations of bank vole may occur. Bank voles is the vector of hantavirus serotype Puumala. The conducted studies suggest the occurrence of hantaviruses Puumala in large forest complexes in the area of eastern and central Poland, and in the Kłodawa area of the Zielona Góra Region. People residing and working in these areas are exposed to infection. This infection seems to be comparable with the data from other countries. The majority of the cases of infection probably have an asymptomatic course.

   Keywords: Hantavirus Puumala, zoonoses, forestry workers, rodents, Myodes