Yue Li,Nana Yan,Yongqiang Wang,Aijing Liu,Changjun Liu,Xingge Lan,Bo Yang,Yulong Gao,Honglei Gao,Xiaole Qi,Hongyu Cui,Kai Li,Li Gao,Qing Pan,Yanping Zhang,Xiaomei Wang
Arch Virol.2021 Jan 3.doi: 10.1007/s00705-020-04909-8. Online ahead of print.
Chicken infectious anemia (CIA), caused by chicken anemia virus (CAV), is an important immunosuppressive disease that seriously threatens the global poultry industry. Here, we isolated and identified 30 new CAV strains from CAV-positive flocks. The VP1 genes of these strains were sequenced and analyzed at the nucleotide and amino acid levels and were found to have very similar nucleotide sequences (> 97% identity); however, they showed 93.9-100.0% sequence identity to the VP1 genes of 55 reference strains. Furthermore, alignment of the deduced amino acid sequences revealed some unique mutations. Phylogenetic analysis indicated the division of VP1 amino acid sequences into two groups (A and B) and four subgroups (A1, A2, A3 and A4). Interestingly, 22 of the newly isolated strains and some Asian reference strains belonged to the A1 group, whereas the remaining eight new isolates belonged to the A3 group. To evaluate the pathogenicity of the epidemic CAV strains from China, the representative strains CAV-JL16/8901 and CAV-HeN19/3001 and the reference strain Cux-1 were selected for animal experiments. Chickens infected with the isolates and reference strain all showed thymus atrophy and bone marrow yellowing. The mortality rates for CAV-JL16/8901, CAV-HeN19/3001, and the reference strain was 30%, 20%, and 0%, respectively, indicating that the epidemic strains pose a more serious threat to chickens. We not only analyzed the molecular evolution of the epidemic strains but also showed for the first time that the epidemic strains in China are more pathogenic than reference strain Cux-1. Effective measures should be established to prevent the spread of CIA in China.