Molecular characterization of chicken astroviruses in gout-affected commercial broiler chickens in Haryana, India
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Chicken astroviruses (CAstVs) infect young chicks and are associated with gastroenteritis, stunted growth or visceral gout (gout). True incidence and distribution of CAstVs as well as virus variants circulating in India is not well understood. In this study, 80 gout-affected broiler chicken flocks from Haryana, a north-western state of India, were tested for the presence of astroviruses by targeting the polymerase gene of both CAstV and avian nephritis virus (ANV) and capsid gene of CAstV. Of these, 22 (27.5%) flocks were found positive for CAstV, 7(8.75%) for ANV and 2 (2.5%) for both CAstV and ANV genome by reverse-transcription-polymerase chain reaction. CAstV was isolated by inoculating tissue (kidney) homogenate from gout-affected birds into specific-pathogen free embryonated chicken eggs where the infected embryos showed stunted growth with necrosis of liver and enlarged kidney with urate deposits. Capsid gene-based phylogenetic analysis revealed the clustering of CAstV strains from this study with Indian strains of serogroup Biii suggesting their antigenic relatedness. Thus the present study reveals the presence of chicken astroviruses in broiler chickens affected with gout.
KeywordsGout Chicken astrovirus Avian nephritis virus Commercial broiler chicken
The authors are thankful to National Research Centre on Equines, National Centre for Veterinary Type Culture Collection, Hisar, Haryana (India) for their support during the entire research.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that there is no any conflict of interest.
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