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Genotype-specific Taqman® assays for the detection and rapid characterisation of European strains of viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus

, : Genotype-specific Taqman® assays for the detection and rapid characterisation of European strains of viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus. Journal of Virological Methods 187(2): 209-214

Viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) is the agent of a disease that causes mortality events in marine and freshwater fish. It is one of the most important pathogens in European rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) aquaculture. Four major genotypes of the virus are recognised reflecting different geographic and host ranges. Genotyping of VHS isolates is important for disease management enabling monitoring of disease spread into new geographical regions or susceptible species. This study sought to develop molecular tools for rapid and efficient classification of European VHSV genotypes. Specificity of genotype-specific real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) assays targeting the viral nucleoprotein (N) gene was tested using 66 viral isolates. All designed Taqman RT-qPCR assays were genotype specific, displayed a high sensitivity and together constituted a diagnostic method for the rapid discrimination of European VHSV genotypes. Practical diagnostic applications of such assays demonstrated in this study include: (1) rapid genotype determination of isolates; and identification of mixed-genotype isolates originating from pooled samples in areas where genotype distribution is known to overlap. However, the most important application will be supporting international VHSV surveillance programmes through the provision of a rapid specific and sensitive isolate characterisation method. Four Taqman RT-qPCR assays were developed to identify genotype of European VHS isolates. Assays correctly identified a panel of 66 VHSV isolates. Assays demonstrate an ability to identify mixed VHSV genotype samples.


PMID: 23089575

DOI: 10.1016/j.jviromet.2012.10.005

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