Virus Genes

, Volume 54, Issue 6, pp 812–817 | Cite as

Phylogenetic analysis of two genotype 3 Hepatitis E viruses from wild boar, Italy

  • Luca De Sabato
  • Gabriele VaccariEmail author
  • Philippe Lemey
  • Maria Grazia Amoroso
  • Giovanna Fusco
  • Giovanni Ianiro
  • Ilaria Di Bartolo


The complete and near-complete genome sequences (7206 nt and 7229 nt) of two wild boar HEV strains detected in Southern Italy were obtained by the next generation sequencing. Phylogenetic analysis and p distance comparisons of one of the strains with HEV-3 reference subtype strains confirmed the detection of a subtype 3i (p distance = 0.110) strain in wild boar, never detected in Italy either in wild boar or pigs. The sequence of the second strain was not classifiable in any of the subtypes defined to date, showing a p distance > 0.138 and a low nucleotide identity with all HEV reference strains. The virus may represent a novel subtype, with a low relationship to other strains of genotype 3 detected in wild boar, pigs, or humans in Europe. This result suggests the circulation in Italy of an emerging or uncommon HEV strain. Sequencing followed by phylogenetic analyses of the complete HEV coding regions are important tools for understanding the evolutionary and epidemiological dynamics underlying the wide genetic diversity of HEV strains.


Hepatitis E virus Wild boar Full genome Next generation sequencing Subtype HEV-3 


Author Contributions

LDS, GV, PL, and IDB conceived and designed the experiments; LDS and GI performed the experiments; GF, BC, and MGA contributed to diagnosis and collected samples. LDS, GV, PL, and IDB contributed to the writing and revision of the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.


This work was partially supported by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under Grant Agreement No. 278433 PREDEMICS.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Research involving human and/or animal participants

No animals were used.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Food Safety, Nutrition and Veterinary Public HealthIstituto Superiore di SanitàRomeItaly
  2. 2.Department of SciencesUniversity Roma TreRomeItaly
  3. 3.Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Rega InstituteKU Leuven – University of LeuvenLouvainBelgium
  4. 4.Department of Animal HealthIstituto Zooprofilattico del MezzogiornoPorticiItaly

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