A recent publication described finding GB virus C (GBV-C) RNA in four of twenty two dromedary camel sera, and sequence analysis found that these viruses were phylogenetically clustered within human GBV-C isolates. Since all other GB viruses to date form monophyletic groups according to their host species, the close relationship between the sequences generated from camel sera and human GBV-C isolates seemed implausible, leading us to conduct an independent analysis of the sequences. Our investigation found three lines of evidence arguing against GBV-C infection in dromedary camels. First, strong evidence of artifactual sequence generation was identified for some of the sequences. Secondly, the sequence diversity within individual camel sera was ten- to one-hundred fifty two-fold greater than that described for GBV-C within a human host. Finally, GBV-C sequences generated from each camel shared near complete identity with human isolates previously described by the same laboratory. Taken together, these data strongly suggest laboratory contamination. We suggest that additional validation experiments are needed before it is possible to conclude that camels are permissive for GBV-C infection.
GB virus; Flavirirus; Dromedary Camel
It has been suggested that polymorphic membrane proteins (Pmps) belonging to the Type V autotransporter protein family play an important role in the pathogenesis of Chlamydia abortus (C. abortus; formerly Chlamydophila abortus) infection. In a previous study we demonstrated the expression of all the pmps at the transcriptional level. The purpose of this study was to measure the number of Pmp positive inclusions throughout the C. abortus developmental cycle to investigate heterogeneity in expression patterns. McCoy cells were infected with C. abortus and analysed for Pmp expression over a 72 h period by fluorescent immunocytochemistry. Pmp18D could be detected at all analysed time points, and could only be accurately quantified from 36 hpi while Pmp10G positive inclusions could be visualised from 36 hpi. Expression of Pmps 13G, 16G and 17G could only be visualised later in the cycle and within less than half of visualised inclusions. These results indicate that while expression of specific Pmps is constitutive (Pmp18D), the pattern of expression of other Pmps is more variable. This suggests that different members of the Pmp family may play different roles within the developmental cycle of the organism, with some (Pmps10G and 18D) having roles throughout the cycle, while the heterogeneity of expression of others may aid in antigenic variation.
Chlamydia abortus; Polymorphic membrane protein; Antigenic variation
Clostridium perfringens type C causes necrotizing enteritis in humans and several other animal species. Type C isolates must produce at least beta toxin (CPB) and alpha toxin (CPA) and most strains produce several other toxins including perfringolysin O (PFO) and TpeL. However, current evidence indicates that CPB is the main virulence factor for type C infections. Most of this evidence is based upon the loss of virulence shown by isogenic type C CPB knock out mutants on cells, and also in rabbit intestinal loops and in mouse models. This virulence is regained when these mutants are complemented with the wild-type cpb gene. Many type C isolates respond to close contact with enterocyte-like Caco-2 cells by producing all toxins, except TpeL, much more rapidly than occurs during in vitro growth. This in vivo effect involves rapid transcriptional upregulation of the cpb, cpb2, pfoA and plc toxin genes. Rapid Caco-2 cell-induced upregulation of CPB and PFO production involves the VirS/VirR two-component system, since upregulated in vivo transcription of the pfoA and cpb genes was blocked by inactivating the virR gene and was reversible by complementation to restore VirR expression.
Clostridium perfringens; beta toxin; enterotoxemia; pathogenesis; type C
The early curative uses of antimicrobial drugs such as fluoroquinolones before the onset of symptoms in veterinary medicine may be regarded as irrational antibiotic consumption. However, it should be stressed that in early curative antimicrobial treatment as in metaphylaxis, the bacterial burden at the infection site is often very low, and so the rapid eradication of the bacterial population could result.
We investigated the impact of early versus later curative administrations of 1 or 40 mg/kg of marbofloxacin on the survival of mice, the eradication of the targeted pathogen and the selection of resistant bacteria in a mouse lung infection with Pasteurella multocida.
In this model, for a given marbofloxacin dose, the clinical and bacteriological outcomes were better, and the selection of resistance less frequent, for the early rather than for the late treatment. Moreover, the early administration of 1 mg/kg led to better clinical and similar bacteriological (eradication and selection of resistance) outcomes than the late administration of 40 mg/kg marbofloxacin. Our results suggest that the optimal doses for the animals’ cure could be lower when administered early during the time course of the infection than when administered after the disease outbreak. As the main argument against early treatments such as metaphylaxis is the possible enhancement of resistance at the gut level, further studies should assess if lower doses of antibiotic administered to all the animals of a herd could have less impact on the commensal digestive flora than higher doses only administered to animals showing clinical symptoms.
Animals; Anti-Bacterial Agents; administration & dosage; pharmacokinetics; therapeutic use; Drug Resistance, Bacterial; Female; Fluoroquinolones; administration & dosage; pharmacokinetics; therapeutic use; Lung; microbiology; Mice; Microbial Sensitivity Tests; Pasteurella Infections; drug therapy; Pasteurella multocida; drug effects; growth & development; Respiratory Tract Infections; drug therapy; Time Factors; Treatment Outcome; antimicrobial resistance; metaphylaxis; early treatment; fluoroquinolone; marbofloxacin; Pasteurella multocida
Peyer's patches constitute both an inductive immune site and an enteropathogen invasion route. Peyer's patch mucosae from porcine jejunum were mounted in Ussing chambers, and either Salmonella choleraesuis vaccine strain SC-54 or non-pathogenic rodent and porcine E. coli strains contacted the Peyer's patch mucosa for 90 min. Internalized bacteria were quantified by a gentamicin resistance assay. Monodansylcadaverine (300 µM, luminal addition), an inhibitor of clathrin-mediated endocytosis, significantly inhibited internalization of both E. coli strains relative to tissues untreated with the inhibitor; internalization of SC-54 was unaffected. The actin-disrupting agent cytochalasin D (10 µM, luminal addition), inhibited internalization of pig-adapted E. coli but not that of rodent-adapted E. coli or SC-54. Internalization of SC-54 and non-pathogenic E. coli in Peyer's patches appears to occur through different cellular routes.
Salmonella choleraesuis; Escherichia coli; mucosal immunity; enteropathogen; endocytosis; clathrin
The mammalian gastric and oral mucosa may be colonized by mixed Helicobacter and Campylobacter species, respectively, in individual animals. To better characterize the presence and distribution of Helicobacter and Campylobacter among marine mammals, we used PCR and 16S rDNA sequence analysis to examine gastric and oral samples from ten dolphins (Tursiops gephyreus), one killer whale (Orcinus orca), one false killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens), and three wild La Plata river dolphins (Pontoporia blainvillei). Helicobacter spp. DNA was widely distributed in gastric and oral samples from both captive and wild cetaceans. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrated two Helicobacter sequence clusters, one closely related to H. cetorum, a species isolated from dolphins and whales in North America. The second related cluster was to sequences obtained from dolphins in Australia and to gastric non-Helicobacter pylori helicobacters, and may represent a novel taxonomic group. Dental plaque sequences from four dolphins formed a third cluster within the Campylobacter genus that likely represents a novel species isolated from marine mammals. Identification of identical Helicobacter spp. DNA sequences from dental plaque, saliva and gastric fluids from the same hosts, suggests that the oral cavity may be involved in transmission. These results demonstrate that Helicobacter and Campylobacter species are commonly distributed in marine mammals, and identify taxonomic clusters that may represent novel species.
Helicobacter; Campylobacter; marine mammals; cetaceans; gastritis
Salmonella Cerro prevalence in US dairy cattle has increased significantly during the past decade. Comparison of 237 Salmonella isolates collected from various human and animal sources between 1986 and 2009 using pulsed- field gel electrophoresis, antimicrobial resistance typing, and spvA screening, showed very limited genetic diversity, indicating clonality of this serotype. Improved subtyping methods are clearly needed to analyze the potential emergence of this serotype. Our results thus emphasize the critical importance of population-based pathogen surveillance for the detection and characterization of potentially emerging pathogens, and caution to critically evaluate the adequacy of diagnostic tests for a given study population and diagnostic application.
Salmonella Cerro; molecular epidemiology; PFGE; emerging clone
A genetically distinct strain of avian hepatitis E virus (avian HEV-VA strain) was isolated from a healthy chicken in Virginia, and thus it is important to characterize and compare its pathogenicity with the prototype strain (avian HEV-prototype) isolated from a diseased chicken. Here we first constructed an infectious clone of the avian HEV-VA strain. Capped RNA transcripts from the avian HEV-VA clone were replication-competent after transfection of LMH chicken liver cells. Chickens inoculated intrahepatically with RNA transcripts of avian HEV-VA clone developed active infection as evidenced by fecal virus shedding, viremia, and seroconversion. To characterize the pathogenicity, RNA transcripts of both avian HEV-VA and avian HEV-prototype clones were intrahepatically inoculated into the livers of chickens. Avian HEV RNA was detected in feces, serum and bile samples from 10/10 avian HEV-VA-inoculated and 9/9 avian HEV-prototype-inoculated chickens although seroconversion occurred only some chickens during the experimental period. The histopathological lesion scores were lower for avian HEV-VA group than avian HEV-prototype group in the liver at 3 and 5 weeks post-inoculation (wpi) and in the spleen at 3 wpi, although the differences were not statistically significant. The liver/body weight ratio, indicative of liver enlargement, of both avian HEV-VA and avian HEV-prototype groups were significantly higher than that of the control group at 5 wpi. Overall, the avian HEV-VA strain still induces histological liver lesions even though it was isolated from a healthy chicken. The results also showed that intrahepatic inoculation of chickens with RNA transcripts of avian HEV infectious clone may serve as an alternative for live virus in animal pathogenicity studies.
Systemic infections with Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesviruses (EEHV) cause a rapid onset acute hemorrhagic disease with an 85% mortality rate. More than 60 cases have been confirmed worldwide occurring predominantly in juvenile Asian elephants. Originally, three virus types EEHV1A, EEHV1B and EEHV2 were identified, all members of the Proboscivirus genus within the Betaherpesvirinae. However, four elephant gammaherpesviruses (EGHV) have also been found by DNA PCR approaches in eye and genital secretions of asymptomatic animals, and two more versions of the Probosciviruses, EEHV3 and EEHV4, were recently detected in acute hemorrhagic disease cases. To ask whether even more species of elephant herpesviruses may exist, we have developed several new diagnostic DNA PCR assays using multiple round primers in the DNA POL region. These have been used routinely for nearly three years to screen samples submitted to the Elephant Herpesvirus Laboratory for diagnosis of possible cases of EEHV disease in blood and necropsy tissue, as well as in biopsies of other suspicious lesions or growths. Several more cases of EEHV1-associated hemorrhagic disease were confirmed, but in addition, we describe here eleven examples of other known and novel herpesviruses detected and evaluated with these reagents. They include the prototypes of four new elephant herpesviruses, two more within the Proboscivirus group EEHV5 and EEHV6, plus two more gammaherpesviruses EGHV3B and EGHV5. We also report initial semi-quantitative PCR assays demonstrating very high viral loads in the blood of the EEHV3 and EEHV4-associated hemorrhagic disease cases.
Probosciviruses; Gamma Herpesviruses; Hemorrhagic Disease; Mixed Infections; Viral Load
Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a significant pathogen of domestic and non-domestic felids worldwide. In domestic cats, FIV is classified into five distinct subtypes (A–E) with subtypes A and B distributed most widely. However, little is known about the degree of intrasubtype viral diversity and this may prove critical in determining whether monovalent vaccines are likely to protect against FIV strains within a single subtype. Here, we characterise novel env sequences from 47 FIV strains recovered from infected cats in the United Kingdom and its environs. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that all bar one sequence belonged to subtype A, the predominant subtype in Western Europe. A single sequence was identified as a likely subtype A/C recombinant, intriguing given that subtype C does not appear to exist in either the UK or North Western Europe and suggestive of a recombination event predating its introduction into the UK. Subtype A strains from the UK were not significantly differentiated from representative subtype A isolates found elsewhere suggesting multiple introductions of FIV into the country. Divergence among isolates was comparable to that observed for subtype A isolates worldwide, indicating that FIV in the UK covers the full spectrum of subtype A diversity seen globally. This study demonstrates that while subtype A is predominant in the UK, novel introductions may result in the emergence of novel subtypes or intersubtype recombinants, potentially circumventing vaccine strategies. However, the dominance of subtype A suggests that the development of a regional or subtype-specific protective vaccine for the UK could be achievable.
Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV); Vaccine; Phylogeny
Sequences encoding the major and minor capsid proteins (VP1 and VP2) from two marine vesivirus isolates (Steller sea lion viruses V810 and V1415) were engineered for expression of virus-like particles (VLPs) in the baculovirus system. The resulting VLPs were morphologically similar to native vesivirus virions. Purified VLPs were probed in immunoblots with pooled antisera specific for nine San Miguel sea lion virus (SMSV) types, and a predominant protein of approximately 60 kDa was detected. An enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the detection of antibodies was developed in which the VLPs served as antigen. The VLPs were adsorbed to the wells of a microplate, and the specificity of the ELISA was established with hyperimmune sera raised against 24 serotypes of the genus Vesivirus. The ELISA was used to screen for the presence of vesivirus specific antibodies in the sera of free-ranging Steller sea lions. The ELISA results demonstrated that Steller sea lions that inhabit the Pacific Ocean waters of southeast Alaska are widely exposed to antigenically-related marine vesiviruses, while no previous exposure could be demonstrated using VLP antigens in 17 Steller sea lions from the Aleutian Islands. The broad reactivity of these VLPs and their non-infectious nature will facilitate global sero-epidemiological studies aimed at determining the incidence and prevalence of marine vesiviruses in mammals that inhabit the Pacific and Atlantic oceans as well as susceptible terrestrial animals.
Caliciviridae; Vesivirus; Virus-like particles; ELISA; Antibodies; Marine mammals
In order to confirm a microscopic diagnosis of ‘eperythrozoonosis’ made over 40 years ago in a captive owl monkey (Aotus trivirgatus), DNA was extracted from archived fixed and stained blood smears and subjected to generic haemotropic mycoplasma (haemoplasma) quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) and a human glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase qPCR as an amplification control. The qPCRs confirmed the extraction of host DNA from the samples and the presence of a haemoplasma species. Partial 16S rRNA and ribonuclease P ribosomal gene fragments were amplified by PCR, cloned and sequenced. Sequence data and phylogeny showed the owl monkey haemoplasma to lie in the haemominutum clade of haemoplasmas, most closely related to ‘Candidatus Mycoplasma kahaneii’. This study confirms the use of generic haemoplasma qPCRs to successfully amplify haemoplasma DNA from fixed, stained and archived blood smears from the early 1970s and provides molecular confirmation of the existence of a novel haemoplasma species in an owl monkey, for which the name ‘Candidatus Mycoplasma aoti’ sp. nov. is proposed.
Haemoplasma; Quantitative polymerase chain reaction; Primate; Aotus trivirgatus; RNase P RNA gene; Phylogeny
At least three haemotropic mycoplasmas have been recognized in cats: Mycoplasma haemofelis (Mhf), ‘Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum’ (CMhm) and ‘Candidatus M. turicensis’ (CMt). The latter was originally identified in a Swiss pet cat with haemolytic anaemia and shown to be prevalent in domestic cats and wild felids worldwide using molecular methods. So far, there has been no confirmatory morphological evidence of the existence of CMt presumably due to low blood loads during infection while CMhm has only been characterized by light microscopy with discrepant results. This study aimed to provide for the first time electron microscopic characteristics of CMt and CMhm and to compare them to Mhf. Blood samples from cats experimentally infected with CMt, CMhm and Mhf were used to determine copy numbers in blood by real-time PCR and for transmission and scanning electron microscopy. High resolution scanning electron microscopy revealed CMt and CMhm to be discoid-shaped organisms of 0.3 μm in diameter attached to red blood cells (RBCs). In transmission electron microscopy of CMt, an oval organism of about 0.25 μm with several intracellular electron dense structures was identified close to the surface of a RBC. CMhm and CMt exhibited similar morphology to Mhf but had a smaller diameter. This is the first study to provide morphological evidence of CMt thereby confirming its status as a distinct haemoplasma species, and to present electron microscopic features of CMhm.
‘Candidatus Mycoplasma turicensis’; ‘Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum’; Haemoplasma; Haemotropic Mycoplasma; Electron microscopy; Real-time PCR
To initiate infection, equine herpesvirus type 1 (EHV-1) attaches to heparan sulfate on cell surfaces and then interacts with a putative glycoprotein D receptor(s). After attachment, virus entry occurs either by direct fusion of the virus envelope with the plasma membrane or via endocytosis followed by fusion between the virus envelope and an endosomal membrane. Upon fusion, de-enveloped virus particles are deposited into the cytoplasm and travel to the nucleus for viral replication. In this report, we examined the mechanism of EHV-1 intracellular trafficking and investigated the ability of EHV-1 to utilize specific cellular components to efficiently travel to the nucleus post-entry. Using a panel of microtubule depolymerizing drugs and inhibitors of microtubule motor proteins, we show that EHV-1 infection is dependent on both the integrity of the microtubule network and the minus-end microtubule motor protein, dynein. In addition, we show that EHV-1 actively induces the acetylation of tubulin, a marker of microtubule stabilization, as early as 15 minutes post-infection. Finally, our data support a role for the cellular kinase, ROCK1, in virus trafficking to the nucleus.
EHV-1; trafficking; microtubules; dynein; ROCK1
This review will cover zoonotic, encephalitic alphaviruses in the family Togaviridae. Encephalitic alphaviruses, i.e. western- (WEEV), eastern- (EEEV), Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) and, more rarely, Ross River virus, Chikungunya virus and Highlands J virus (HJV), are neuroinvasive and may cause neurological symptoms ranging from mild (e.g., febrile illness) to severe (e.g., encephalitis) in humans and equines. Among the naturally occurring alphaviruses, WEEV, EEEV and VEEV have widespread distributions in North, Central and South America. WEEV has found spanning the U.S. from the mid-West (Michigan and Illinois) to the West coast and extending to Canada with human cases reported in 21 states. EEEV is found along the Gulf (Texas to Florida) and Atlantic Coast (Georgia to New Hampshire), as well as in the mid-West (Wisconsin, Illinois and Michigan) and in Canada, with human cases reported in 19 states. In contrast, transmission of VEEV occurs predominantly in Central and South America. As with their geographical distribution, equine encephalitis viruses differ in their main mosquito vector species and their zoonotic potential.
Hepatitis E virus (HEV) is a small, non-enveloped, single-strand, positive-sense RNA virus of approximately 7.2 kb in size. HEV is classified in the family Hepeviridae consisting of four recognized major genotypes that infect humans and other animals. Genotypes 1 and 2 HEV are restricted to humans and often associated with large outbreaks and epidemics in developing countries with poor sanitation conditions, whereas genotypes 3 and 4 HEV infect humans, pigs and other animal species and are responsible for sporadic cases of hepatitis E in both developing and industrialized countries. The avian HEV associated with Hepatitis-Splenomegaly syndrome in chickens is genetically and antigenically related to mammalian HEV, and may represent a new genus in the family. There exist three open reading frames in HEV genome: ORF1 encodes non-structural proteins, ORF2 encodes the capsid protein, and the ORF3 encodes a small phosphoprotein. ORF2 and ORF3 are translated from a single bicistronic mRNA, and overlap each other but neither overlaps ORF1. Due to the lack of an efficient cell culture system and a practical animal model for HEV, the mechanisms of HEV replication and pathogenesis are poorly understood. The recent identification and characterization of animal strains of HEV from pigs and chickens and the demonstrated ability of cross-species infection by these animal strains raise potential public health concerns for zoonotic HEV transmission. It has been shown that the genotypes 3 and 4 HEV strains from pigs can infect humans, and vice versa. Accumulating evidence indicated that hepatitis E is a zoonotic disease, and swine and perhaps other animal species are reservoirs for HEV. A vaccine against HEV is not yet available.
Herpesviruses are highly host specific and share a long synchronous evolution with their hosts. Only in rare cases, species barriers fall and allow animal to human or human to animal transmission. Among the zoonotic herpesviruses, Cercopithecine herpesvirus 1 is the most significant and can be transmitted from macaques to human. Conversely, Human herpesvirus 1 is capable of causing severe disease in primates. Besides those two examples, there are several herpesviruses with a certainly limited or only suspected ability to cross species barriers. Those include Saimiriine herpesvirus 2, Phocid herpesvirus 2, Equid herpesvirus 1, Epstein-Barr Virus, Marek’s disease virus, and pseudorabies virus. Concerning xenotransplantations, porcine gammaherpesviruses must be considered as a zoonotic threat.
herpes B virus; herpes simplex virus; Marek’s disease virus; phocine herpesvirus
Avian hepatitis E virus (avian HEV) is the primary causative agent of Hepatitis-Splenomegaly (HS) syndrome in chickens. Recently, a genetically unique strain of avian HEV, designated avian HEV-VA, was recovered from healthy chickens in Virginia. The objective of this study was to experimentally compare the pathogenicity of the prototype strain recovered from a chicken with HS syndrome and the avian HEV-VA strain in specific-pathogen-free chickens. An infectious stock of the avian HEV-VA strain was first generated and its infectivity titer determined in chickens. For the comparative pathogenesis study, fifty-four chickens of 6-week-old were assigned to 3 groups of 18 chickens each. The group 1 chickens were each intravenously inoculated with 5×102.5 50% chicken infectious dose of the prototype strain. The group 2 received the same dose of the avian HEV-VA strain, and the group 3 served as negative controls. Six chickens from each group were necropsied at 2, 3 and 4 weeks post-inoculation (wpi). Most chickens in both inoculated groups seroconverted by 3 wpi, and the mean anti-avian HEV antibody titers were higher for the prototype strain group than the avian HEV-VA strain group. There was no significant difference in the patterns of viremia and fecal virus shedding. Blood analyte profiles did not differ between treatment groups except for serum creatine phosphokinase levels which were higher for prototype avian HEV group than avian HEV-VA group. The hepatic lesion score was higher for the prototype strain group than the other two groups. The results indicateded that the avian HEV-VA strain is only slightly attenuated compared to the prototype strain, suggesting that the full-spectrum of HS syndrome is likely associated with other co-factors.
This paper is about the taxonomy and genomics of herpesviruses. Each theme is presented as a digest of current information flanked by commentaries on past activities and future directions.
The International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses recently instituted a major update of herpesvirus classification. The former family Herpesviridae was elevated to a new order, the Herpesvirales, which now accommodates 3 families, 3 subfamilies, 17 genera and 90 species. Future developments will include revisiting the herpesvirus species definition and the criteria used for taxonomic assignment, particularly in regard to the possibilities of classifying the large number of herpesviruses detected only as DNA sequences by polymerase chain reaction.
Nucleotide sequence accessions in primary databases, such as GenBank, consist of the sequences plus annotations of the genetic features. The quality of these accessions is important because they provide a knowledge base that is used widely by the research community. However, updating the accessions to take account of improved knowledge is essentially reserved to the original depositors, and this activity is rarely undertaken. Thus, the primary databases are likely to become antiquated. In contrast, secondary databases are open to curation by experts other than the original depositors, thus increasing the likelihood that they will remain up to date. One of the most promising secondary databases is RefSeq, which aims to furnish the best available annotations for complete genome sequences. Progress in regard to improving the RefSeq herpesvirus accessions is discussed, and insights into particular aspects of herpesvirus genomics arising from this work are reported.
Herpesvirus; Classification; Genomics; Herpes simplex virus; Human cytomegalovirus
Through a survey of the phylogenetic distribution of sialidase among mycoplasmas, we detected activity secreted by the type strains of three of eleven species frequently or first isolated from dogs. The specific activity of washed cells of the type strains of Mycoplasma canis, Mycoplasma cynos, and Mycoplasma molare ranged from 5.2 ± 0.8 × 10-6 to 1.1 ± 0.3 × 10-5 enzymatic units per colony-forming unit (U/CFU). Cells of M. molare strain H542T had twice the specific activity (P < 0.05) of M. canis strain PG14T or M. cynos strain H831T. Significant differences in sialidase activity existed among nine clinical isolates of M. canis, ranging from not detectable to 2.1 ± 0.1 × 10-5 U/CFU. The type strains of other species previously isolated from dogs (Mycoplasma arginini, Mycoplasma bovigenitalium, Mycoplasma edwardii, Mycoplasma felis, Mycoplasma gatae, Mycoplasma maculosum, Mycoplasma opalescens, and Mycoplasma spumans) did not exhibit either secreted or cell-associated sialidase activity. Neither specific nor degenerate PCR primers complementary to the three known mycoplasmal sialidase alleles were able to amplify orthologs in M. canis, M. cynos, or M. molare, further evidence that the secreted sialidase of those species is distinct from the strictly cell-associated sialidases of Mycoplasma alligatoris, Mycoplasma synoviae, and Mycoplasma gallisepticum. This is the first report of a well-known bacterial virulence factor whose expression varies among strains of certain Mycoplasma species that infect dogs.
Mongolia had no reported cases of capripoxvirus disease from 1977 until an outbreak of sheeppox in 2006–2007 and then goatpox in 2008. The two outbreaks occurred in geographically distant areas of Mongolia and, most strikingly, were highly species-specific. The 2006–2007 sheeppox outbreak affected no goats and the 2008 goatpox outbreak affected no sheep despite communal herding. The diseases were diagnosed using the polymerase chain reaction and virus neutralisation test. The P32 gene of the Mongolian sheeppox and goatpox viruses from the recent outbreaks were sequenced and compared with an archived 1967 strain of Goatpox virus from Mongolia. The P32 gene of the 2006–2007 Mongolian Sheeppox virus strain was identical to previously published sheeppox strains. The P32 gene of the 2008 Mongolian Goatpox virus strain was identical to the gene from virus isolated from recent goatpox outbreaks in China and Vietnam. The archived Mongolian Goatpox virus strain was unique.
Capripoxvirus; Goatpox; Sheeppox; Mongolia; Poxvirus
EIAV is a monocyte/macrophage tropic virus. To date, even though EIAV has been under investigation for numerous years, very few details have been elucidated about EIAV/macrophage interactions. This is largely due to the absence of an equine macrophage cell line that would support viral replication. Herein we describe the spontaneous immortalization and generation of a clonal equine macrophage-like (EML) cell line with the functional and immunophenotype characteristics of differentiated equine monocyte derived macrophage(s) (eMDM(s)). These cells possess strong non-specific esterase (NSE) activity, are able to phagocytose fluorescent bioparticles, and produce nitrites in response to LPS. The EML-3C cell line expresses the EIAV receptor for cellular entry (ELR1) and supports replication of the virulent EIAVPV biological clone. Thus, EML-3C cells provide a useful cell line possessing equine macrophage related properties for the growth and study of EIAV infection as well as of other equine macrophage tropic viruses.
equine cells; Macrophage; lentivirus; equine infectious anemia virus; macrophage cell lines; equine viruses
Two canine haemoplasma species have been recognised to date; Mycoplasma haemocanis (Mhc), which has been associated with anaemia in splenectomised or immunocompromised dogs, and “Candidatus Mycoplasma haematoparvum” (CMhp), recently described in an anaemic splenectomised dog undergoing chemotherapy. The study aim was to develop quantitative real-time PCR assays (qPCRs) incorporating an endogenous internal control to detect Mhc and CMhp and to apply these assays to DNA samples extracted from canine blood collected in Northern Tanzania (n = 100) and from dogs presented to a Trinidadian veterinary hospital (n = 185).
QPCRs specific for Mhc and CMhp were designed using 16S rRNA gene sequence data, and each was duplexed with an assay specific for canine glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH). The assays detected ≤10 copies of a sequence-specific haemoplasma plasmid per reaction and neither assay showed cross-reactivity with 106 copies of the sequence-specific plasmid from the non-target canine haemoplasma species.
Nineteen of the 100 Tanzanian samples (19%) were positive for Mhc alone and one (1%) was dually infected. One Trinidadian sample was negative for canine GAPDH DNA and was excluded from the study. Of the 184 remaining Trinidadian samples, nine (4.9%) were positive for Mhc alone, five (2.7%) for CMhp alone, and two (1.1%) dually infected.
This is the first report of canine haemoplasma qPCR assays that use an internal control to confirm the presence of amplifiable sample DNA, and their application to prevalence studies. Mhc was the most commonly detected canine haemoplasma species.
“Candidatus Mycoplasma haematoparvum”; Mycoplasma haemocanis; Polymerase chain reaction; Prevalence; Ticks
Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) is a terminal disease of cats caused by systemic infection with a feline coronavirus (FCoV). FCoV biotypes that cause FIP are designated feline infectious peritonitis virus (FIPV), and are distinguished by their ability to infect macrophages and monocytes. Antigenically similar to their virulent counterparts are FCoV biotypes designated feline enteric coronavirus (FECV), which usually cause only mild enteritis and are unable to efficiently infect macrophages and monocytes. The FCoV spike protein mediates viral entry into the host cell and has previously been shown to determine the distinct tropism exhibited by certain isolates of FIPV and FECV, however the molecular mechanism underlying viral pathogenesis has yet to be determined. Here we show that the FECV strain WSU 79-1683 (FECV-1683) is highly dependent on host cell cathepsin B and cathepsin L activity for entry into the host cell, as well as on the low pH of endocytic compartments. In addition, both cathepsin B and cathepsin L are able to induce a specific cleavage event in the FECV-1683 spike protein. In contrast, host cell entry by the FIPV strains WSU 79-1146 (FIPV-1146) and FIPV-DF2 proceeds independently of cathepsin L activity and low pH, but is still highly dependent on cathepsin B activity. In the case of FIPV-1146 and FIPV-DF2, infection of primary feline monocytes was also dependent on host cell cathepsin B activity, indicating that host cell cathepsins may play a role in the distinct tropisms displayed by different feline coronavirus biotypes.
Feline coronavirus; feline infectious peritonitis; virus entry; cathepsin; endosome; spike protein
The aim of this study was to compare blood copy, haematological and glucose values between cats experimentally infected with either Mycoplasma haemofelis (Group HF: 10 cats), ‘Candidatus M. haemominutum’ (Group HM: 3 cats) or ‘Candidatus M. turicensis’ (Group TU: 3 cats). Blood samples were collected regularly up to 85 days post-infection (DPI) for haemoplasma real-time quantitative PCR, haematology, Coombs’ testing and blood glucose measurement. Statistical analysis was performed using a general linear model (ANOVA) appropriate for a repeated measures experiment with significance set as P < 0.05. Cats in Group TU had significantly lower blood copy numbers than cats in Group HF (P < 0.001) and HM (P < 0.001). All Group HF cats developed anaemia (often severe), macrocytosis and evidence of erythrocyte-bound antibodies whereas Groups HM and TU cats did not. Group HF had significantly lower PCVs, haemoglobin concentrations and red blood cell counts, and significantly higher mean cell volumes, than Groups HM and TU. In Group HF, erythrocyte-bound antibodies reactive at 4 °C (both IgM and IgG) appeared between 8 and 22 DPI and persisted for two to four weeks, whereas those reactive at 37 °C (primarily IgG) appeared between 22 and 29 DPI and persisted for one to five weeks. In most cats antibodies appeared after the fall in haemoglobin started. Although Group TU had significantly lower glucose concentrations than Groups HF (P = 0.006) and HM (P = 0.027), mean blood glucose concentrations remained within the reference range in all groups. This study demonstrates that M. haemofelis infection, in contrast to ‘Candidatus M. haemominutum’ and ‘Candidatus M. turicensis’ infection, can result in a severe macrocytic anaemia and the development of cold and warm reactive erythrocyte-bound antibodies.
Haemoplasma; Quantitative real-time PCR; Coombs’ test; Autoagglutination; Glucose