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Open Access Highly Accessed Research

Isolation and characterization of a variant porcine epidemic diarrhea virus in China

Yongfei Pan1, Xiaoyan Tian1, Wei Li1, Qingfeng Zhou1, Dongdong Wang1, Yingzuo Bi2, Feng Chen2* and Yanhua Song1*

Author Affiliations

1 Guangdong Wen’s Group Academy, Guangdong Wen’s Foodstuffs Group Co, Ltd, Xinxing, Guangdong, 527400, China

2 College of Animal Science, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou, 510642, China

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Virology Journal 2012, 9:195  doi:10.1186/1743-422X-9-195

Published: 12 September 2012

Abstract

An outbreak of diarrhea in pigs started in Guangdong, South China in January 2011. Cases were characterized by watery diarrhea, dehydration and vomiting, with 80–100% morbidity and 50–90% mortality in suckling piglets. The causative agent of the diarrhea was ultimately identified as porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV). In this study, we isolated a PEDV strain designated CHGD-01 from piglet intestines using Vero cell cultures, and its specific cytopathic effects were confirmed in susceptible cells by direct immunofluorescence testing and electron microscopy. The complete genome of CHGD-01 was shown to be 28,035 nucleotides in length, with a similar structure to that of PEDV reference strains. Phylogenetic analyses based on the whole genome revealed that CHGD-01 shared nucleotide sequence identities of 98.2–98.4% with two other Chinese isolates reported in the same year, thus constituting a new cluster. Amino acid sequence analysis based on individual virus genes indicated a close relationship between the spike protein gene of CHGD-01 and the field strain KNU0802 in Korea. Its ORF3 and nucleoprotein genes, however, were divergent from all other sequenced PEDV isolate clusters and therefore formed a new group, suggesting a new variant PEDV isolate in China. Further studies will be required to determine the immunogenicity and pathogenicity of this new variant.

Keywords:
Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus; Virus isolate; Variant