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PLoS One 2013;8(8):e68777

Discovery of a bovine enterovirus in alpaca.

McClenahan SD, Scherba G, Borst L, Fredrickson RL, Krause PR, Uhlenhaut C


A cytopathic virus was isolated using Madin-Darby bovine kidney (MDBK) cells from lung tissue of alpaca that died of a severe respiratory infection. To identify the virus, the infected cell culture supernatant was enriched for virus particles and a generic, PCR-based method was used to amplify potential viral sequences. Genomic sequence data of the alpaca isolate was obtained and compared with sequences of known viruses. The new alpaca virus sequence was most similar to recently designated Enterovirus species F, previously bovine enterovirus (BEVs), viruses that are globally prevalent in cattle, although they appear not to cause significant disease. Because bovine enteroviruses have not been previously reported in U.S. alpaca, we suspect that this type of infection is fairly rare, and in this case appeared not to spread beyond the original outbreak. The capsid sequence of the detected virus had greatest homology to Enterovirus F type 1 (indicating that the virus should be considered a member of serotype 1), but the virus had greater homology in 2A protease sequence to type 3, suggesting that it may have been a recombinant. Identifying pathogens that infect a new host species for the first time can be challenging. As the disease in a new host species may be quite different from that in the original or natural host, the pathogen may not be suspected based on the clinical presentation, delaying diagnosis. Although this virus replicated in MDBK cells, existing standard culture and molecular methods could not identify it. In this case, a highly sensitive generic PCR-based pathogen-detection method was used to identify this pathogen.

Category: Journal Article
PubMed ID: #23950875 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0068777
PubMed Central ID: #PMC3741315
Includes FDA Authors from Scientific Area(s): Biologics
Entry Created: 2013-08-21 Entry Last Modified: 2014-03-07