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A highly divergent Puumala virus lineage in southern Poland

Abstract

Puumala virus (PUUV) represents one of the most important hantaviruses in Central Europe. Phylogenetic analyses of PUUV strains indicate a strong genetic structuring of this hantavirus. Recently, PUUV sequences were identified in the natural reservoir, the bank vole (Myodes glareolus), collected in the northern part of Poland. The objective of this study was to evaluate the presence of PUUV in bank voles from southern Poland. A total of 72 bank voles were trapped in 2009 at six sites in this part of Poland. RT-PCR and IgG-ELISA analyses detected three PUUV positive voles at one trapping site. The PUUV-infected animals were identified by cytochrome b gene analysis to belong to the Carpathian and Eastern evolutionary lineages of bank vole. The novel PUUV S, M and L segment nucleotide sequences showed the closest similarity to sequences of the Russian PUUV lineage from Latvia, but were highly divergent to those previously found in northern Poland, Slovakia and Austria. In conclusion, the detection of a highly divergent PUUV lineage in southern Poland indicates the necessity of further bank vole monitoring in this region allowing rational public health measures to prevent human infections.

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Acknowledgements

We thank Renata Świergosz-Kowalewska for help with planning the field work, Barbara Magłysz, Aneta Gaura and Adam Dzida for help in trappings, Christian Imholt, Christin Trapp, Stefan Fischer and Dörte Kaufmann for their excellent technical assistance, Nicole Reimer and Christoph Staubach for preparation of Fig. 1, and Małgorzata Sadkowska-Todys for comments on the manuscript. The work in the laboratory of RGU was supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (SPP 1596 „Ecology and Species Barriers in Emerging Viral Diseases“, UL 405/1-1 to RGU) and the EU grant FP7-261504 EDENext and is catalogued by the EDENext Steering Committee as EDENext367 (http://www.edenext.eu). The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Commission. GH was supported by Grant 31003A-149585 from the Swiss National Science Foundation. The field work was financed by FRISC project (Polish Ministry of Science, the EEA/Norwegian Financial Mechanism), and the Jagiellonian University (DS/WBINOZ/INOS/758 & 757).

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Correspondence to Rainer G. Ulrich.

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All procedures on animals were approved by the First Local Bioethical Committee in Kraków (decision # 48/2007).

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Rosenfeld, U.M., Drewes, S., Ali, H.S. et al. A highly divergent Puumala virus lineage in southern Poland. Arch Virol 162, 1177–1185 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00705-016-3200-5

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Keywords

  • Bank Vole
  • Trapping Site
  • Haemorrhagic Fever With Renal Syndrome
  • Common Vole
  • Nephropathia Epidemica