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Genetic analysis reveals multiple intergenic region and central variable region in the African swine fever virus variants circulating in Serbia

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This study provides the first comprehensive report on the molecular characteristics of African swine fever virus (ASFV) variants in Serbia between 2019 and 2022. Since its first observation in July 2019, the disease has been found in wild boar and domestic swine. The study involved the analysis of 95 ASFV-positive samples collected from 12 infected administrative districts in Serbia. Partial four genomic regions were genetically characterized, including B646L, E183L, B602L, and the intergenic region (IGR) between the I73R-I329L genes. The results of the study suggest that multiple ASFV strains belonging to genotype II are circulating in Serbia, as evidenced by the analysis of the IGR between I73R-I329L genes that showed the most differences. Furthermore, the phylogenetic analysis of the B602L gene showed three different clades within the CVR I group of ASFV strains. Regarding the IGR, 98.4% were grouped into IGR II, with only one positive sample grouped into the IGR III group. These findings provide essential insights into the molecular characteristics of ASFV variants in Serbia and contribute to the knowledge of circulating strains of ASFV in Europe. However, further research is necessary to gain a better understanding of ASFV spread and evolution.

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The datasets generated during and/or analysed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.


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The sequences were generated through the Sequencing Service of the Animal Production and Health Sub-Programme of the Joint FAO/IAEA Division in Vienna, Austria.


The Serbian Ministry of Science, Technological Development and Innovation provided funding for the study through Contract No 451–03-47/2023–01/200030 and 451–03-47/2023–01/200143.

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All authors contributed to the study conception and design. D.G. was the principal investigator, molecular tests were carried out by D.G. and V.M., sequences were analysed by I.T. and C.G., the epidemiological investigation was carried out by R.P. and S.R., and D.K. and S.R. supervised the study.

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Correspondence to Dimitrije Glišić.

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Glišić, D., Milićević, V., Krnjaić, D. et al. Genetic analysis reveals multiple intergenic region and central variable region in the African swine fever virus variants circulating in Serbia. Vet Res Commun 47, 1925–1936 (2023).

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