Archived serum samples from 111 Peromyscus leucopus, collected 1984–88 in Baltimore City (Maryland, USA), were analyzed by indirect immunofluorescence assay. Sera from two (2%) individuals contained antibodies reactive to Ehrlichia equi and the human granulocytic ehrlichiosis (HGE) agent. This suggests that the HGE agent or an antigenically related organism has been present in rodent populations in this locality for more than a decade, and was present in the region at least 12 yr before a case of human disease was recognized.
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Vol. 34 • No. 1