Genetic variation and phylogenetic relationships among 22 French isolates of equine arteritis virus (EAV) obtained over four breeding seasons (2001–2004) were determined by sequencing open reading frames (ORFs) 2a–7. The ORFs 2a–7 of 22 isolates differed from the prototype virulent Bucyrus strain of EAV by between 14 (99.5% identity) and 328 (88.7% identity) nucleotides, and differed from each other by between 0 (100% identity) and 346 (88.1% identity) nucleotides, confirming genetic diversity among EAV strains circulating in France. Phylogenetic analysis based on the partial ORF5 sequences (nucleotides 11296–11813) of 22 French isolates and 216 additional EAV strains available in GenBank clustered the global isolates of EAV into two distinct groups: North American and European. The latter could be further divided into two large subgroups: European subgroup 1 (EU-1) and European subgroup 2 (EU-2). Phylogenetic analysis based on 100 EAV ORF3 sequences yielded similar results. Of the 22 French EAV isolates, the 11 isolates obtained before January 28, 2003 clustered with either the EU-1 (9 isolates) or EU-2 (2 isolates) subgroup. In contrast, by the criteria used in this study, the 11 isolates obtained after January 30, 2003 belong to the North American group, strongly suggesting that these strains were recently introduced into France.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 1, 2007
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