The sequences encoding the haemagglutinin (HA) of twelve H5N1 isolates obtained in 2006 and 2007 from different avian species in backyard holdings and poultry farms in Egypt revealed amino acid variations across the polypeptide and also in the polybasic cleavage motif of three of the isolates from backyard poultry with one, so far, unique mutation in an isolate from a chicken. The HAs of two isolates (A/goose/Egypt/R4/2007, A/chicken/Egypt/R3/2007) collected on the same day in the same village from two neighbouring houses were found to differ from each other. Five out of the seven nucleotide exchanges in these two isolates were translationally silent, and two resulted in amino acid substitutions: one in the polybasic cleavage motif and the other in the signal peptide. Circulation of different H5N1 strains possessing considerable variations in backyard poultry, particularly domestic waterfowl, draws attention to the evolution of H5N1 subtypes in Egypt.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 1, 2009
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