Lactate dehydrogenase elevating virus infects laboratory and wild mice worldwide. It is mostly known for its ability to elevate serum lactate dehydrogenase as well as a range of other serum enzymes in silently infected mice, but it may also produce paralysis after infection of the central nervous system. Especially the c strain, also called the Murphy strain, is likely to produce paralysis, and AKR and C58 mice seem to be more susceptible than other strains.155 It is a common contaminant of transplantable tumor cell cultures.156 It is not quite clear how it actually spreads. Cannibalism and fighting, especially among male mice, may be a way of transmission, but a parasitic vector may be needed, which makes epizootics in mouse colonies less likely. Transplacental infection may occur.157 It is most easily diagnosed by testing mice for elevated levels of lactate dehydrogenase, while biological materials may be screened by PCR.158

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