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Open Access Research

Isolation and complete nucleotide sequence of a Batai virus strain in Inner Mongolia, China

Hao Liu1, Xi-qun Shao1, Bo Hu1, Jian-jun Zhao1, Lei Zhang1, Hai-ling Zhang1, Xue Bai1, Run-xiang Zhang1, Deng-yun Niu12, Yan-gang Sun1 and Xi-jun Yan1*

Author Affiliations

1 Division of Zoonoses, Institute of Special Economic Animal and Plant Sciences, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences CAAS, 15 Luming Street, Jilin 132109, China

2 College of Animal Science and Technology, Qingdao Agricultural University, Qingdao 266109, China

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Virology Journal 2014, 11:138  doi:10.1186/1743-422X-11-138

Published: 6 August 2014

Abstract

Background

Batai virus (BATV) is a member of the Orthobunyavirus genus of the family Bunyaviridae, and a vector-borne pathogen. Genomic variations of BATV exist in different regions of the world, due to genetic reassortment. Whole-genome sequencing of any isolate is necessary for a phylogenetic analysis. In 1998, a BATV strain was isolated from an Anopheles philippines mosquito in Yunnan Province, China. This strain has not been found to infect any other host. We investigated BATV infection in cattle in Inner Mongolia, China and performed deep sequencing of the genome of the BATV isolate.

Findings

Ninety-five blood samples were collected from cattle in Inner Mongolia, China in 2012. The BATV infection rate was 2.1%. Previously, BATV strain NM/12 was isolated from two cattle in Inner Mongolia, China, and the whole genomic sequence of the strain has been available. We determined the complete genomic nucleotide sequences of the small (S), medium (M), and large (L) genome segments using bovine blood obtained in 2012, and the nucleotide homologies of these segments with those from GenBank were 88.7%-97%, 84%-95.4%, and 72.6%-95.8%, respectively. The deduced amino acid identities were 87.2-99.7%, 64.2-96.8%, and 81.1-98.6%. Phylogenetic analyses based on full-length genomic sequences indicated that the M and L segments, and a portion of the S segment, of NM/12 are most closely related to the BATV strains isolated in Asia. The S and M segments of NM/12 were independent of phylogenetic lineages. The L segment was the most closely related to Chittoor/IG-20217 (isolated in India), and distantly related to isolated strains in Italy. Nucleotide substitution rates in the nucleotide sequences that code for the nucleocapsid, envelope glycoprotein, and polymerase protein of NM/12 strain were 2.56%, 4.69%, and 4.21%, respectively, relative to the original strain of MM2222.

Conclusion

A novel BATV NM/12 strain from bovine serum collected in Inner Mongolia was isolated from cattle in China for the first time. Our findings elucidate the evolutionary status of the BATV NM/12 strain among different orthobunyavirus strains and may provide some clues to prevent the emergence of BATV infection in cattle and humans.

Keywords:
Batai virus; Orthobunyavirus; Bunyaviridae; Reassortment