Members of the family Picornaviridae are important pathogens of humans and animals, although compared with the thousands of known bird species (>10 000), only a few (n = 11) picornaviruses have been identified from avian sources. This study reports the metagenomic detection and complete genome characterization of a novel turkey picornavirus from faecal samples collected from eight turkey farms in Hungary. Using RT-PCR, both healthy (two of three) and affected (seven of eight) commercial turkeys with enteric and/or stunting syndrome were shown to be shedding viruses in seven (88 %) of the eight farms. The viral genome sequence (turkey/M176/2011/HUN; GenBank accession no. JQ691613) shows a high degree of amino acid sequence identity (96 %) to the partial P3 genome region of a picornavirus reported recently in turkey and chickens from the USA and probably belongs to the same species. In the P1 and P2 regions, turkey/M176/2011/HUN is related most closely to, but distinct from, the kobuviruses and turdivirus 1. Complete genome analysis revealed the presence of characteristic picornaviral amino acid motifs, a potential type II-like 5′ UTR internal ribosome entry site (first identified among avian-origin picornaviruses) and a conserved, 48 nt long ‘barbell-like’ structure found at the 3′ UTR of turkey/M176/2011/HUN and members of the picornavirus genera Avihepatovirus and Kobuvirus. The general presence of turkey picornavirus – a novel picornavirus species – in faecal samples from healthy and affected turkeys in Hungary and in the USA suggests the worldwide occurrence and endemic circulation of this virus in turkey farms. Further studies are needed to investigate the aetiological role and pathogenic potential of this picornavirus in food animals.
Birds are frequent sources of emerging human infectious diseases. Viral particles were enriched from the feces of 51 wild urban pigeons (Columba livia) from Hong Kong and Hungary, their nucleic acids randomly amplified and then sequenced. We identified sequences from known and novel species from the viral families Circoviridae, Parvoviridae, Picornaviridae, Reoviridae, Adenovirus, Astroviridae, and Caliciviridae (listed in decreasing number of reads), as well as plant and insect viruses likely originating from consumed food. The near full genome of a new species of a proposed parvovirus genus provisionally called Aviparvovirus contained an unusually long middle ORF showing weak similarity to an ORF of unknown function from a fowl adenovirus. Picornaviruses found in both Asia and Europe that are distantly related to the turkey megrivirus and contained a highly divergent 2A1 region were named mesiviruses. All eleven segments of a novel rotavirus subgroup related to a chicken rotavirus in group G were sequenced and phylogenetically analyzed. This study provides an initial assessment of the enteric virome in the droppings of pigeons, a feral urban species with frequent human contact.
Molecular detection of viruses has been aided by high-throughput sequencing, permitting the genomic characterization of emerging strains. In this study, we comprehensively screened 500 respiratory secretions from children with upper and/or lower respiratory tract infections for viral pathogens. The viruses detected are described, including a divergent human parainfluenza virus type 4 from GS FLX pyrosequencing of 92 specimens. Complete full-genome characterization of the virus followed, using Single Molecule, Real-Time (SMRT) sequencing. Subsequent “primer walking” combined with Sanger sequencing validated the RS platform's utility in viral sequencing from complex clinical samples. Comparative genomics reveals the divergent strain clusters with the only completely sequenced HPIV4a subtype. However, it also exhibits various structural features present in one of the HPIV4b reference strains, opening questions regarding their lifecycle and evolutionary relationships among these viruses. Clinical data from patients infected with the strain, as well as viral prevalence estimates using real-time PCR, is also described.
The genus Teschovirus, family Picornaviridae, currently includes 12 serotypes (PTV 1 to 12) isolated from swine. PTVs have been well studied in domestic pigs, but knowledge about PTVs in wild boars is deficient. Here, we report the first complete PTV genome sequence from 7 (70%) of 10 fecal samples of wild boar piglets (Sus scrofa) by RT-PCR and pyrosequencing. Analysis of the wild boar PTV strain WB2C-TV/2011/HUN (JQ429405) showed considerable difference, especially in VP1 (66–74% amino acid identity) compared to the available PTVs. PTV is present in wild boars, and WB2C-TV/2011/HUN represents a novel PTV genotype, provisionally named PTV-13.
Mice (Mus musculus) are the most commonly used laboratory animals. Viral metagenomics on tissues of immunodeficient mice revealed sequences of a novel mammalian astrovirus. Using PCR, we screened mice from 4 breeders, 4 pharmaceutical companies, 14 research institutes and 30 universities in the US and Japan. Mice from one US breeder tested positive while none from Japanese breeders were positive for MuAstV. Mice in over half of the universities (19/30), institutes (7/14) and pharmaceutical animal facilities (2/4) investigated revealed the presence of MuAstV. Nine mice strains tested positive including both immunodeficient strains (NSG, NOD-SCID, NSG-3GS, C57BL6-Timp-3−/−, and uPA-NOG) and immunocompetent strains (B6J, ICR, Bash2, BALB/c). Our data indicates that MuAstV has a wide geographical, institutional and host strain distribution. Comparison of the MuAstV RdRp sequences showed numerous mutations indicating ongoing viral divergence in different facilities. This study demonstrates the need for metagenomic screening of laboratory animals to identify adventitious infections that may affect experimental outcomes.
The characterization of viral genomes has accelerated due to improvement in DNA sequencing technology. Sources of animal samples and molecular methods for the identification of novel viral pathogens and steps to determine their pathogenicity are listed. The difficulties for predicting future cross-species transmissions are highlighted by the wide diversity of known viral zoonoses. Recent surveys of viruses in wild and domesticated animals have characterized numerous viruses including some closely related to those infecting humans. The detection of multiple genetic lineages within viral families infecting a single host species, phylogenetically interspersed with viruses found in other host species, reflects frequent past cross-species transmissions. Numerous opportunities for the generation of novel vaccines will arise from a better understanding of animal viromes.
The family Astroviridae consists of two genera, Avastrovirus and Mamastrovirus whose members are associated with gastroenteritis in avian and mammalian hosts, respectively. In this study, we report the first detection of astrovirus from fecal specimens of wild boars (Sus scrofa) using viral metagenomics and complete genome sequencing. The wild boar astrovirus (WBAstV-1/2011/HUN, JQ340310) genome is 6707 nucleotide long and had 76%, 95% and 56% amino acid (aa) identity in the ORF1a (852aa), ORF1b (522aa) and ORF2 (845aa) regions, respectively, to porcine astrovirus 4 (PAstV-4, JF713713), the closest match. This study indicates that wild boar could be a reservoir for astroviruses.
astrovirus; Mamastrovirus; wild boar; Sus scrofa; feces; species
Until 2011 the genus Gyrovirus in the family Circoviridae consisted of a single virus (Chicken anemia virus or CAV) causing a common immunosuppressive disease in chickens when a second gyrovirus (HGyV) was reported on the skin of 4 % of healthy humans. HGyV is very closely related to a recently described chicken gyrovirus, AGV2, suggesting that they belong to the same viral species. During a viral metagenomic analysis of 100 human faeces from children with diarrhoea in Chile we identified multiple known human pathogens (adenoviruses, enteroviruses, astroviruses, sapoviruses, noroviruses, parechoviruses and rotaviruses) and a novel gyrovirus species we named GyV3 sharing <63 % similarity with other gyrovirus proteins with evidence of recombination with CAV in its UTR. Gyroviridae consensus PCR revealed a high prevalence of CAV DNA in diarrhoea and normal faeces from Chilean children and faeces of USA cats and dogs, which may reflect consumption of CAV-infected/vaccinated chickens. Whether GyV3 can infect humans and/or chickens requires further studies.
Stool samples from two healthy infant siblings collected at about weekly intervals during their first year of life were analyzed by PCR for 15 different enteric viral genera. Adenovirus, Aichi virus, Anellovirus, Astrovirus, Bocavirus, Enterovirus, Parechovirus, Picobirnavirus, and Rotavirus were detected. Not detected were Coronavirus, Cardiovirus, Cosavirus, Salivirus, Sapovirus, and Norovirus. Long-term virus shedding, lasting from one to 12 months, was observed for adenoviruses, anelloviruses, bocaviruses, enteroviruses, parechoviruses, and picobirnaviruses. Repeated administration of oral poliovirus vaccine resulted in progressively shorter periods of poliovirus detection. Four nonpolio enterovirus genotypes were also detected. An average of 1.8 distinct human viruses were found per time point. Ninety-two percent (66/72) of the fecal samples tested contained one to five different human viruses. Two British siblings in the mid-1980s showed nearly constant fecal viral shedding. Our results demonstrate that frequent enteric infections with diverse viruses occur during early childhood in the absence of severe clinical symptoms.
Deep sequencing of untreated sewage provides an opportunity to monitor enteric infections in large populations and for high-throughput viral discovery. A metagenomics analysis of purified viral particles in untreated sewage from the United States (San Francisco, CA), Nigeria (Maiduguri), Thailand (Bangkok), and Nepal (Kathmandu) revealed sequences related to 29 eukaryotic viral families infecting vertebrates, invertebrates, and plants (BLASTx E score, <10−4), including known pathogens (>90% protein identities) in numerous viral families infecting humans (Adenoviridae, Astroviridae, Caliciviridae, Hepeviridae, Parvoviridae, Picornaviridae, Picobirnaviridae, and Reoviridae), plants (Alphaflexiviridae, Betaflexiviridae, Partitiviridae, Sobemovirus, Secoviridae, Tombusviridae, Tymoviridae, Virgaviridae), and insects (Dicistroviridae, Nodaviridae, and Parvoviridae). The full and partial genomes of a novel kobuvirus, salivirus, and sapovirus are described. A novel astrovirus (casa astrovirus) basal to those infecting mammals and birds, potentially representing a third astrovirus genus, was partially characterized. Potential new genera and families of viruses distantly related to members of the single-stranded RNA picorna-like virus superfamily were genetically characterized and named Picalivirus, Secalivirus, Hepelivirus, Nedicistrovirus, Cadicistrovirus, and Niflavirus. Phylogenetic analysis placed these highly divergent genomes near the root of the picorna-like virus superfamily, with possible vertebrate, plant, or arthropod hosts inferred from nucleotide composition analysis. Circular DNA genomes distantly related to the plant-infecting Geminiviridae family were named Baminivirus, Nimivirus, and Niminivirus. These results highlight the utility of analyzing sewage to monitor shedding of viral pathogens and the high viral diversity found in this common pollutant and provide genetic information to facilitate future studies of these newly characterized viruses.
Porcine enteroviruses (PEVs) are members of the family Picornaviridae, genus Enterovirus. Until now, only three different PEV genotypes (PEV-9 and -10, and PEV-3H/PEV-14) have been detected in domestic pigs, and there is no information about the presence of PEVs in wild animals. Here, we identify and characterize the complete genomes of PEV originated from 5 of 10 (50%) of wild boar (Sus scrofa) piglets by RT-PCR and pyrosequencing. Wild boar/WBD/2011/HUN (JN807387) PEV showed only 67% amino acid identity in VP1 compared to the most closely related prototype PEV-3H/PEV-14. Wild boar enterovirus represents a novel PEV genotype, provisionally called PEV-15.
picornavirus; porcine enterovirus; swine; wild boar; epidemiology; Hungary
Parvoviruses cause a variety of mild to severe symptoms or asymptomatic infections in humans and animals. During a viral metagenomic analysis of feces from children with acute diarrhea in Burkina Faso, we identified in decreasing prevalence nucleic acids from anelloviruses, dependoviruses, sapoviruses, enteroviruses, bocaviruses, noroviruses, adenoviruses, parechoviruses, rotaviruses, cosavirus, astroviruses, and hepatitis B virus. Sequences from a highly divergent parvovirus, provisionally called bufavirus, were also detected whose NS1 and VP1 proteins showed <39% and <31% identities to those of previously known parvoviruses. Four percent of the fecal samples were PCR positive for this new parvovirus, including a related bufavirus species showing only 72% identity in VP1. The high degree of genetic divergence of these related genomes from those of other parvoviruses indicates the presence of a proposed new Parvoviridae genus containing at least two species. Studies of the tropism and pathogenicity of these novel parvoviruses will be facilitated by the availability of their genome sequences.
We characterized the complete genome of a novel dog circovirus (DogCV) from the liver of a dog with severe hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, vasculitis, and granulomatous lymphadenitis. DogCV was detected by PCR in fecal samples from 19/168 (11.3%) dogs with diarrhea and 14/204 (6.9%) healthy dogs and in blood from 19/409 (3.3%) of dogs with thrombocytopenia and neutropenia, fever of unknown origin, or past tick bite. Co-infection with other canine pathogens was detected for 13/19 (68%) DogCV-positive dogs with diarrhea. DogCV capsid proteins from different dogs varied by up to 8%. In situ hybridization and transmission electron microscopy detected DogCV in the lymph nodes and spleens of 4 dogs with vascular compromise and histiocytic inflammation. The detection of a circovirus in tissues of dogs expands the known tropism of these viruses to a second mammalian host. Our results indicate that circovirus, alone or in co-infection with other pathogens, might contribute to illness and death in dogs.
circovirus; vasculitis; deep sequencing; viruses; dogs; hemorrhagic gastroenteritis; necrotizing vasculitis; granulomatous lymphadenitis; canine vascular disease
(See the editorial commentary by Katz, on pages 867–9 and see the article by Stramer et al, on pages 886–94.)
Background. Genetic variations of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hepatitis C virus (HCV), and hepatitis B virus (HBV) can affect diagnostic assays and therapeutic interventions. Recent changes in prevalence of subtypes/genotypes and drug/immune-escape variants were characterized by comparing recently infected vs more remotely infected blood donors.
Methods. Infected donors were identified among approximately 34 million US blood donations, 2006–2009; incident infections were defined as having no or low antiviral antibody titers. Viral genomes were partially sequenced.
Results. Of 321 HIV strains (50% incident), 2.5% were non-B HIV subtypes. Protease and reverse transcriptase (RT) inhibitor resistance mutations were found in 2% and 11% of infected donors, respectively. Subtypes in 278 HCV strains (31% incident) yielded 1a>1b>3a>2b>2a>4a>6d, 6e: higher frequencies of 3a in incident cases vs higher frequencies of 1b in prevalent cases were found (P = .04). Twenty subgenotypes among 193 HBV strains (26% incident) yielded higher frequencies of A2 in incident cases and higher frequencies of A1, B2, and B4 in prevalent cases (P = .007). No HBV drug resistance mutations were detected. Six percent of incident vs 26% of prevalent HBV contained antibody neutralization escape mutations (P = .01).
Conclusions. Viral genetic variant distribution in blood donors was similar to that seen in high-risk US populations. Blood-borne viruses detected through large-scale routine screening of blood donors can complement molecular surveillance studies of highly exposed populations.
A divergent human gammapapillomavirus (γ-HPV) genome in a nasal swab from an elderly Finnish patient with respiratory symptoms was genetically characterized. The L1 gene of HPV-Fin864 shared <70% nucleotide identity to other reported γ-HPV genomes, provisionally qualifying it as a new species in the Gammapapillomavirus genus.
The genomes of numerous circoviruses and distantly related circular DNA viruses encoding a rolling circle replication initiator protein (Rep) have been characterized from the tissues of mammals, fish, insects, and plants (geminivirus and nanovirus), human and animal feces, in an algae cell, and in diverse environmental samples. We review the genome organization, phylogenetic relationships and initial prevalence studies of cycloviruses, a proposed new genus in the Circoviridae family. Viral fossil rep sequences were also identified integrated on the chromosomes of mammals, frogs, lancelets, crustaceans, mites, gastropods, roundworms, placozoans, hydrozoans, protozoans, land plants, fungi, algae, and phytoplasma bacterias and their plasmids, reflecting their past host range. An ancient origin for viruses with rep-encoding single stranded small circular genomes, predating the diversification of eukaryotes, is discussed. The cellular hosts and pathogenicity of many recently described rep-containing circular genomes remain to be determined. Future studies of the virome of single cell and multi-cellular eukaryotes are likely to further extend the known diversity and host-range of small rep-containing circular viral genomes.
circovirus; cyclovirus; Circoviridae; Rep protein; deep sequencing; circular ssDNA genome
Bocaviruses are classified as a genus within the Parvoviridae family of single-stranded DNA viruses and are pathogenic in some mammalian species. Two species have been previously reported in dogs, minute virus of canines (MVC), associated with neonatal diseases and fertility disorders; and Canine bocavirus (CBoV), associated with respiratory disease.
In this study using deep sequencing of enriched viral particles from the liver of a dog with severe hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, necrotizing vasculitis, granulomatous lymphadenitis and anuric renal failure, we identified and characterized a novel bocavirus we named Canine bocavirus 3 (CnBoV3). The three major ORFs of CnBoV3 (NS1, NP1 and VP1) shared less than 60% aa identity with those of other bocaviruses qualifying it as a novel species based on ICTV criteria. Inverse PCR showed the presence of concatemerized or circular forms of the genome in liver.
We genetically characterized a bocavirus in a dog liver that is highly distinct from prior canine bocaviruses found in respiratory and fecal samples. Its role in this animal’s complex disease remains to be determined.
Canine bocavirus 3; Episome; Coinfection
The family Astroviridae consists of two genera, Avastrovirus and Mamastrovirus, whose members are associated with gastroenteritis in avian and mammalian hosts, respectively. We serendipitously identified a novel ovine astrovirus in a fecal specimen from a domestic sheep (Ovis aries) in Hungary by viral metagenomic analysis. Sequencing of the fragment indicated that it was an ORF1b/ORF2/3′UTR sequence, and it has been submitted to the GenBank database as ovine astrovirus type 2 (OAstV-2/Hungary/2009) with accession number JN592482. The unique sequence characteristics and the phylogenetic position of OAstV-2 suggest that genetically divergent lineages of astroviruses exist in sheep.
sheep astrovirus; domestic sheep; feces; species
Human parvovirus 4 (PARV4) is an emerging human virus, and little is known about the molecular aspects of PARV4 apart from its incomplete genome sequence, which lacks information of the termini. We analyzed the gene expression profile of PARV4 using a nearly full-length HPV4 genome in a replication competent system in 293 cells. We found that PARV4 utilizes two promoters to transcribe non-structural protein- and structural protein-encoding mRNAs, respectively, which were polyadenylated at the right end of the genome. Three major proteins, including the large non-structural protein NS1a, whose mRNA is spliced, and capsid proteins VP1 and VP2, were detected. Additional functional analysis of the NS1a revealed its capability to induce cell cycle arrest at G2/M phase in ex vivo-generated human hematopoietic stem cells. Taken together, our characterization of the molecular features of PARV4 suggests that PARV4 represents a new genus in the family Parvoviridae.
Tumors of any type are exceedingly rare in raccoons. High-grade brain tumors, consistently located in the frontal lobes and olfactory tracts, were detected in 10 raccoons during March 2010–May 2012 in California and Oregon, suggesting an emerging, infectious origin. We have identified a candidate etiologic agent, dubbed raccoon polyomavirus, that was present in the tumor tissue of all affected animals but not in tissues from 20 unaffected animals. Southern blot hybridization and rolling circle amplification showed the episomal viral genome in the tumors. The multifunctional nuclear protein large T-antigen was detectable by immunohistochemical analyses in a subset of neoplastic cells. Raccoon polyomavirus may contribute to the development of malignant brain tumors of raccoons.
Polyomavirus; raccoon; oncogenesis; malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor; glioblastoma; oncogenic virus; tumor virus; Merkel cell polyomavirus; JC virus; olfactory tract; California; large T-antigen; p53; viruses; United States
Polyomaviruses are small circular DNA viruses associated with chronic infections and tumors in both human and animal hosts. Using an unbiased deep sequencing approach, we identified a novel, highly divergent polyomavirus, provisionally named MX polyomavirus (MXPyV), in stool samples from children. The ∼5.0 kB viral genome exhibits little overall homology (<46% amino acid identity) to known polyomaviruses, and, due to phylogenetic variation among its individual proteins, cannot be placed in any existing taxonomic group. PCR-based screening detected MXPyV in 28 of 834 (3.4%) fecal samples collected from California, Mexico, and Chile, and 1 of 136 (0.74%) of respiratory samples from Mexico, but not in blood or urine samples from immunocompromised patients. By quantitative PCR, the measured titers of MXPyV in human stool at 10% (weight/volume) were as high as 15,075 copies. No association was found between the presence of MXPyV and diarrhea, although girls were more likely to shed MXPyV in the stool than boys (p = 0.012). In one child, viral shedding was observed in two stools obtained 91 days apart, raising the possibility of chronic infection by MXPyV. A multiple sequence alignment revealed that MXPyV is a closely related variant of the recently reported MWPyV and HPyV10 polyomaviruses. Further studies will be important to determine the association, if any, of MXPyV with disease in humans.
The close interactions of dogs with humans and surrounding wildlife provide frequent opportunities for cross-species virus transmissions. In order to initiate an unbiased characterization of the eukaryotic viruses in the gut of dogs, this study used deep sequencing of partially purified viral capsid-protected nucleic acids from the faeces of 18 diarrhoeic dogs. Known canine parvoviruses, coronaviruses and rotaviruses were identified, and the genomes of the first reported canine kobuvirus and sapovirus were characterized. Canine kobuvirus, the first sequenced canine picornavirus and the closest genetic relative of the diarrhoea-causing human Aichi virus, was detected at high frequency in the faeces of both healthy and diarrhoeic dogs. Canine sapovirus constituted a novel genogroup within the genus Sapovirus, a group of viruses also associated with human and animal diarrhoea. These results highlight the high frequency of new virus detection possible even in extensively studied animal species using metagenomics approaches, and provide viral genomes for further disease-association studies.
Viral metagenomics has recently yielded numerous previously uncharacterized viral genomes from human and animal samples. We review some of the metagenomics tools and strategies to determine which orphan viruses are likely pathogens. Disease association studies compare viral prevalence in patients with unexplained symptoms versus healthy individuals but require these case and control groups to be closely matched epidemiologically. The development of an antibody response in convalescent serum can temporarily link symptoms with a recent infection. Neutralizing antibody detection require often difficult cell culture virus amplification. Antibody binding assays require proper antigen synthesis and positive control sera to set assay thresholds. High levels of viral genetic diversity within orphan viral groups, frequent co-infections, low or rare pathogenicity, and chronic virus shedding, can all complicate disease association studies. The limited availability of matched cases and controls sample sets from different age groups and geographic origins is a major block for estimating the pathogenic potential of recently characterized orphan viruses. Current limitations on the practical use of deep sequencing for viral diagnostics are listed.
orphan virus; viral metagenomics; disease association; virus discovery