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Updates on the genetic variations of Norovirus in sporadic gastroenteritis in Chungnam Korea, 2009-2010

KwiSung Park1, SangGu Yeo2, HyeSook Jeong2, KyoungAh Baek1, DongUk Kim1, MyoungHee Shin1, JaeHyoung Song3, SooJin Lee4, YoungJin Choi5, JoonSoo Park6, SungChan Cho3* and DooSung Cheon2*

Author Affiliations

1 Chungcheongnam-Do Institute of Health and Environmental Research, Daejeon, Korea

2 Division of Enteric and Hepatitis Viruses, Center for Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Health, Korea Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 187 Osongsaengmyeong2(i)-ro, Gangoe-myeon, Cheongwon-gun, Chungcheongbuk-do, Korea

3 Bio-Therapeutics Research Institute, Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology, 685-2 Yangcheong-ri, Ochang-eup, Cheongwon-gun, Chungcheongbuk-do 363-883, Korea

4 Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Eulji University, Daejeon, Korea

5 Departments of Laboratory Medicine, College of Medicine, Soonchunhyang University, Cheonan, Korea

6 Departments of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Soonchunhyang University, Cheonan, Korea

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Virology Journal 2012, 9:29  doi:10.1186/1743-422X-9-29

Published: 24 January 2012

Abstract

Previously, we explored the epidemic pattern and molecular characterization of noroviruses (NoVs) isolated in Chungnam, Korea in 2008, and the present study extended these observations to 2009 and 2010. In Korea, NoVs showed the seasonal prevalence from late fall to spring, and widely detected in preschool children and peoples over 60 years of age. Epidemiological pattern of NoV was similar in 2008 and in 2010, but pattern in 2009 was affected by pandemic influenza A/H1N1 2009 virus. NoV-positive samples were subjected to sequence determination of the capsid gene region, which resolved the isolated NoVs into five GI (2, 6, 7, 9 and 10) and eleven GII genotypes (1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 12, 13, 16 and 17). The most prevalent genotype was GII.4 and occupied 130 out of 211 NoV isolates (61.6%). Comparison of NoV GII.4 of prevalent genotype in these periods with reference strains of the same genotype was conducted to genetic analysis by a phylogenetic tree. The NoV GII.4 strains were segregated into seven distinct genetic groups, which are supported by high bootstrap values and previously reported clusters. All Korean NoV GII.4 strains belonged to either VI cluster or VII cluster. The divergence of nucleotide sequences within VI and VII intra-clusters was > 3.9% and > 3.5%, respectively. The "Chungnam(06-117)/2010" strain which was isolated in June 2010 was a variant that did not belong to cluster VI or VII and showed 5.8-8.2%, 6.2-8.1% nucleotide divergence with cluster VI and VII, respectively.