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Tick-borne encephalitis virus sequenced directly from questing and blood-feeding ticks reveals quasispecies variance
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Microbiology, Virology.
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2014 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 9, no 7, e103264- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The increased distribution of the tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) in Scandinavia highlights the importance of characterizing novel sequences within the natural foci. In this study, two TBEV strains: the Norwegian Mandal 2009 (questing nymphs pool) and the Swedish Saringe 2009 (blood-fed nymph) were sequenced and phylogenetically characterized. Interestingly, the sequence of Mandal 2009 revealed the shorter form of the TBEV genome, similar to the highly virulent Hypr strain, within the 3' non-coding region (3'NCR). A different genomic structure was found in the 3'NCR of Saringe 2009, as in-depth analysis demonstrated TBEV variants with different lengths within the poly(A) tract. This shows that TBEV quasispecies exists in nature and indicates a putative shift in the quasispecies pool when the virus switches between invertebrate and vertebrate environments. This prompted us to further sequence and analyze the 3'NCRs of additional Scandinavian TBEV strains and control strains, Hypr and Neudoerfl. Toro 2003 and Habo 2011 contained mainly a short (A) 3C(A)6 poly(A) tract. A similar pattern was observed for the human TBEV isolates 1993/783 and 1991/4944; however, one clone of 1991/4944 contained an (A) 3C(A)11 poly(A) sequence, demonstrating that quasispecies with longer poly(A) could be present in human isolates. Neudoerfl has previously been reported to contain a poly(A) region, but to our surprise the resequenced genome contained two major quasispecies variants, both lacking the poly(A) tract. We speculate that the observed differences are important factors for the understanding of virulence, spread, and control of the TBEV.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Public library science , 2014. Vol. 9, no 7, e103264- p.
National Category
Infectious Medicine
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-94165DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0103264ISI: 000341354800074OAI: diva2:752713
Available from: 2014-10-06 Created: 2014-10-06 Last updated: 2014-10-06Bibliographically approved

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Lindqvist, RichardÖverby, Anna K.
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