1887

Abstract

Astroviruses cause gastrointestinal and neurological infections in humans and animals. Since astrovirus is genetically diverse and different astrovirus genotypes can be found in the same animal species, astrovirus is a potential zoonotic threat to humans. In this study, we screened for astroviruses in rodents from Hong Kong, Hunan and Guangxi. Astrovirus was detected in 11.9 % (67/562) of rectal swab specimens. Phylogenetic analysis of the ORF1b region, which encodes the RdRp, showed that there were four distinct clusters (clusters A, B, C and D). Whole genome sequencing was performed for 11 representative strains from each of these four clusters. The mean amino acid genetic distances (p-dist) of full-length ORF2 were >0.634 between clusters A, B, C and other known astroviruses. The p-dist between clusters A and B, A and C, and B and C were 0.371–0.375, 0.517–0.549 and 0.524–0.555, respectively. Within cluster C, the p-dist between HN-014 and GX-006 was 0.372. Since strains with p-dist of ≥0.368 in ORF2 are now considered to be of separate genotypes species, cluster A, cluster B, cluster C-HN-014 and cluster C-GX-006 can be classified as novel genotype species. Cluster D was most closely related to the rodent astrovirus previously identified in Hong Kong. Since rodents live in close proximity to humans, interspecies jumping of these novel astroviruses may represent a threat to human health.

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2017-05-01
2020-01-21
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