HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — A rat in a Pennsylvania home-breeding facility has tested positive for the Seoul virus.
Pennsylvania Health Secretary Dr. Karen Murphy said in a statement that the infected rat was purchased from a Tennessee breeding facility with confirmed Seoul virus infections.
The remaining rats in the Pennsylvania facility were euthanized to prevent the spread of the disease.
“We are working very closely with the CDC to monitor any Seoul virus activity and prevent further exposure,” Murphy said.
The Seoul virus is a type of hantavirus that is found worldwide and spread by rodents, specifically the brown or Norway rat. People can become infected with the virus after coming into contact with the urine, droppings or saliva of infected rodents.
There have been no confirmed human infections of the Seoul virus in Pennsylvania.
According to the CDC, there are currently 13 human infections nationwide.
There is no effective treatment for Seoul virus infections.