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Detailed genetic analysis of hemagglutinin-neuraminidase glycoprotein gene in human parainfluenza virus type 1 isolates from patients with acute respiratory infection between 2002 and 2009 in Yamagata prefecture, Japan

Katsumi Mizuta1, Mika Saitoh2, Miho Kobayashi2, Hiroyuki Tsukagoshi2, Yoko Aoki1, Tatsuya Ikeda1, Chieko Abiko1, Noriko Katsushima3, Tsutomu Itagaki4, Masahiro Noda5, Kunihisa Kozawa2, Tadayuki Ahiko1 and Hirokazu Kimura26*

Author Affiliations

1 Yamagata Prefectural Institute of Public Health, 1-6-6 Toka-machi, Yamagata-shi, Yamagata 990-0031, Japan

2 Gunma Prefectural Institute of Public Health and Environmental Sciences, 378 Kamioki-machi, Maebashi-shi, Gunma 371-0052, Japan

3 Katsushima Pediatric Clinic, 4-4-12 Minamidate, Yamagata-shi, Yamagata 990-2461, Japan

4 Yamanobe Pediatric Clinic, 2908-14 Yamanobe-machi, Higashimurayama-gun, Yamagata 990-0301, Japan

5 Department of Virology III, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, 4-7-1 Gakuen, Musashimurayama-shi, Tokyo 208-0011, Japan

6 Infectious Disease Surveillance Center, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, 4-7-1 Gakuen, Musashimurayama-shi, Tokyo 208-0011, Japan

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Virology Journal 2011, 8:533  doi:10.1186/1743-422X-8-533

Published: 13 December 2011



Human parainfluenza virus type 1 (HPIV1) causes various acute respiratory infections (ARI). Hemagglutinin-neuraminidase (HN) glycoprotein of HPIV1 is a major antigen. However, the molecular epidemiology and genetic characteristics of such ARI are not exactly known. Recent studies suggested that a phylogenetic analysis tool, namely the maximum likelihood (ML) method, may be applied to estimate the evolutionary time scale of various viruses. Thus, we conducted detailed genetic analyses including homology analysis, phylogenetic analysis (using both the neighbor joining (NJ) and ML methods), and analysis of the pairwise distances of HN gene in HPIV1 isolated from patients with ARI in Yamagata prefecture, Japan.


A few substitutions of nucleotides in the second binding site of HN gene were observed among the present isolates. The strains were classified into two major clusters in the phylogenetic tree by the NJ method. Another phylogenetic tree constructed by the ML method showed that the strains diversified in the late 1980s. No positively selected sites were found in the present strains. Moreover, the pairwise distance among the present isolates was relatively short.


The evolution of HN gene in the present HPIV1 isolates was relatively slow. The ML method may be a useful phylogenetic method to estimate the evolutionary time scale of HPIV and other viruses.

Human parainfluenza virus; Maximum likelihood (ML) method; Phylogenetic analysis