Virus Genes

, Volume 52, Issue 6, pp 867–871

Genetic characterization of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 viruses isolated from naturally infected pigeons in Egypt

  • Emad Mohamed Elgendy
  • Yohei Watanabe
  • Tomo Daidoji
  • Yasuha Arai
  • Kazuyoshi Ikuta
  • Madiha Salah Ibrahim
  • Takaaki Nakaya
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11262-016-1369-z

Cite this article as:
Elgendy, E.M., Watanabe, Y., Daidoji, T. et al. Virus Genes (2016) 52: 867. doi:10.1007/s11262-016-1369-z

Abstract

Avian influenza viruses impose serious public health burdens with significant mortality and morbidity not only in poultry but also in humans. While poultry susceptibility to avian influenza virus infection is well characterized, pigeons have been thought to have low susceptibility to these viruses. However, recent studies reported natural pigeon infections with highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 viruses. In Egypt, which is one of the H5N1 endemic areas for birds, pigeons are raised in towers built on farms in backyards and on house roofs, providing a potential risk for virus transmission from pigeons to humans. In this study, we performed genetic analysis of two H5N1 virus strains that were isolated from naturally infected pigeons in Egypt. Genetic and phylogenetic analyses showed that these viruses originated from Egyptian H5N1 viruses that were circulating in chickens or ducks. Several unique mutations, not reported before in any Egyptian isolates, were detected in the internal genes (i.e., polymerase residues PB1-V3D, PB1-K363R, PA-A369V, and PA-V602I; nucleoprotein residue NP-R38K; and nonstructural protein residues NS1-D120N and NS2-F55C). Our findings suggested that pigeons are naturally infected with H5N1 virus and can be a potential reservoir for transmission to humans, and showed the importance of genetic analysis of H5N1 internal genes.

Keywords

H5N1 Pigeon Egypt Sequencing Phylogenetic analysis 

Supplementary material

11262_2016_1369_MOESM1_ESM.pptx (312 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PPTX 312 kb)
11262_2016_1369_MOESM2_ESM.xlsx (16 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (XLSX 15 kb)
11262_2016_1369_MOESM3_ESM.docx (12 kb)
Supplementary material 3 (DOCX 11 kb)

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emad Mohamed Elgendy
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yohei Watanabe
    • 1
    • 3
  • Tomo Daidoji
    • 1
  • Yasuha Arai
    • 1
    • 3
  • Kazuyoshi Ikuta
    • 3
  • Madiha Salah Ibrahim
    • 1
    • 2
  • Takaaki Nakaya
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Infectious DiseasesKyoto Prefectural University of MedicineKyotoJapan
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineDamanhur UniversityDamanhurEgypt
  3. 3.Department of Viral Infections, Research Institute for Microbial DiseasesOsaka UniversityOsakaJapan

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