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Research Project: Intervention Strategies to Predict, Prevent and Control Disease Outbreaks Caused by Emerging Strains of Virulent Newcastle Disease Viruses

Location: Exotic & Emerging Avian Viral Diseases Research

Title: Assessment of contemporary genetic diversity and inter-taxa/inter-region exchange of avian paramyxovirus serotype 1 in wild birds sampled in North America

Author
item Ramey, Andrew - Us Geological Survey (USGS)
item Goraichuk, Iryna - Consultant
item Hicks, Joseph - University Of Texas
item Dimitrov, Kiril - Consultant
item Poulson, Rebecca - University Of Georgia
item Stallknecht, David - University Of Georgia
item Bahl, Justin - University Of Texas
item Afonso, Claudio

Submitted to: Virology Journal
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/17/2017
Publication Date: 3/3/2017
Publication URL: http://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/5698752
Citation: Ramey, A.W., Goraichuk, I.V., Hicks, J.T., Dimitrov, K.M., Poulson, R.L., Stallknecht, D.E., Bahl, J., Afonso, C.L. 2017. Assessment of contemporary genetic diversity and inter-taxa/inter-region exchange of avian paramyxovirus serotype 1 in wild birds sampled in North America. Virology Journal. 14:43. doi:10.1186/s12985-017-0714-8.

Interpretive Summary: Newcastle Disease is a significant poultry disease that affects production and trade of domestic animals. Some of the viruses that cause disease and others that cause mild respiratory signs reside in wild birds. In order to prevent and predict outbreaks, it is important to identify all of the strain of viruses circulating in wild birds. Here we sampled wild birds and determined the genetic diversity of Newcastle disease in North America. The virus was found in birds species belonging to numerous taxonomic orders and within hosts inhabiting multiple geographic regions suggesting some level of viral exchange. We identified previously unrecognized genetic diversity of Newcastle disease which is likely a function of continued viral evolution in those reservoirs.

Technical Abstract: Avian paramyxovirus serotype 1 (APMV-1) viruses are globally distributed, infect wild, peridomestic, and domestic birds, and sometimes lead to outbreaks of disease. Thus, the maintenance, evolution, and spread of APMV-1 viruses are relevant to avian health. In this study we sequenced the fusion gene from 58 APMV-1 isolates recovered from thirteen species of wild birds sampled throughout the USA during 2007–2014. We analyzed sequence information with previously reported data in order to assess contemporary genetic diversity and inter-taxa/inter-region exchange of APMV-1 in wild birds sampled in North America. Our results suggest that wild birds maintain previously undescribed genetic diversity of APMV-1; however, such diversity is unlikely to be pathogenic to domestic poultry. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that most of the APMV-1 diversity detected in wild birds of North America has been found in birds belonging to numerous taxonomic host orders and within hosts inhabiting multiple geographic regions suggesting some level of viral exchange. However, our results also provide statistical support for associations between branch tip traits and Bayesian phylogenetic tree topology when considering host taxonomic order and region of sample origin which supports restricted exchange among taxa or geographical regions of North America for some APMV-1 sub-genotypes. We identify previously unrecognized genetic diversity of APMV-1 in wild birds in North America which is likely a function of continued viral evolution in reservoir hosts. We did not, however, find support for the emergence or maintenance of APMV-1 strains predicted to be pathogenic to poultry in wild birds of North America outside of the order Suliformes. Furthermore, genetic evidence suggests that ecological drivers or other mechanisms may restrict viral exchange among taxa and regions of North America. Additional and more systematic sampling for APMV-1 in North America would likely provide further inference on viral dynamics for this infectious agent in wild bird populations.