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Title: Development of an endogenous virus-free line of chickens susceptible to all subgroups of avian leukosis virus

item Zhang, Huanmin
item Bacon, Larry
item Fadly, Aly

Submitted to: Avian Diseases
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/5/2008
Publication Date: 9/30/2008
Citation: Zhang, H., Bacon, L.D., Fadly, A.M. 2008. Development of an Endogenous Virus-Free Line of Chickens Susceptible to All Subgroups of Avian Leukosis Virus. Avian Diseases. 52(3):412-418.

Interpretive Summary: Chicken lines free of endogenous avian leukosis viruses (ALV-E) are rare, but very useful in laboratory tests designed to detect ALVs in commercial live-virus vaccines as well as in basic genome function studies. Using in-house immunological and molecular genetics reagents, we developed a new line of chickens that is free of ALV-E and susceptible to all subgroups of ALVs including ALV-E. This new line should be a unique resource for conducting research in area of ALVs and basic genome function tests; it should be of interest to poultry disease diagnosticians and researchers in industry, academia and government.

Technical Abstract: Primary chicken embryo fibroblasts (CEF) from special specific pathogen free chicken lines are normally used for detection of contamination with avian leukosis viruses (ALV). The suitability and efficiency of such tests mostly depend on the susceptibility of CEF to varied subgroups of ALV. The ideal CEF for such tests should be not only susceptible to all retroviruses, but also free of endogenous viruses so that such tests are immune to any interference that may occur between the endogenous and the tested (exogenous) viruses. CEF and/or chickens free of endogenous viruses are also desirable for gene transfer studies using retroviral vectors, such as RNA interference (RNAi) experiments and transgenic work. The absence of ev genes in CEF or chickens can empower clean detection of successful RNAi construct delivery or gene transfer. CEF free of ev genes are also essential reagents routinely used in growing and detecting unknown retroviruses in varied viral assays. This report documents the development of a new line of chickens that is free of endogenous viruses and susceptible to all subgroups of ALV.