Characterisation of the capsid protein gene from a nodavirus strain affecting the Atlantic halibut Hippoglossus hippoglossus and design of an optimal reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) detection assay
ABSTRACT A 1349 nucleotide fragment of the RNA2 from a nodavirus affecting Atlantic halibut Hippoglossus hippoglossus was characterised and the nuclotide sequence (accession no. AJ245641) was employed to develop an optimal reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) detection assay. The sequenced part of the RNA2 of Atlantic halibut nodavirus (strain AH95NorA) was highly similar in organisation to that of the RNA2 of striped jack nervous necrosis virus (SJNNV), and comprised features common to all nodaviruses. These characteristics confirmed that the virus that causes viral encephalopathy and retinopathy (VER) in Atlantic halibut is a nodavirus. The nucleotide sequence of the 1349 nucleotide fragment of Atlantic halibut nodavirus RNA2 was 80% identical to the RNA2 of SJNNV. The T2 region (830 nucleotides) of the RNA2 of Atlantic halibut nodavirus shared 98% of the nucleotide sequence when compared with the homologous region of barfin flounder nervous necrosis virus (BFNNV), while the nucleotide sequence identity to SJNNV in this region was 76%. Phylogenetic analysis based on the nucleotide sequences of the T4 region (421 nucleotides) of Atlantic halibut nodavirus and of other fish nodaviruses revealed a close relationship to the nodaviruses of the barfin flounder clad that have been found in other cold-water species (Pacific cod Gadus macrocephalus and barfin founder Verasper moseri). The nucleotide sequence of the RNA2 of Atlantic halibut nodavirus included some features that differ from that of SJNNV. The ORF of the RNA2 of Atlantic halibut nodavirus lacked 6 nucleotides through a single deletion and a 5-nucleotide deletion, separated by 4 nucleotides. The 3'-non-encoding region contained a 21 nucleotide insert and a 3 nucleotide deletion when compared with SJNNV. In comparison with the RNA2 of SJNNV, the 3'-non-encoding region showed a nucleotide sequence identity of 84.5%. A primer set based on the Atlantic halibut nodavirus nucleotide sequence was employed in order to design an optimal RT-PCR. The detection limit of the PCR was 10 to 100 copies of plasmid, while the detection limit of the RT-PCR assay was 100 to 1000 copies of in vitro transcribed viral RNA.
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ABSTRACT: Homogenate of tissue from juveniles of Atlantic halibut Hippoglossus hippoglossus suffering from viral encephalopathy and retinopathy (VER) was used to challenge smolt of Atlantic salmon Salmo salar with an initial average weight of 110 g. The nodavirus was administered in the form of an intraperitoneal injection, and the fish were kept for 134 d post challenge. Genotype characterisation of the nodavirus was performed by sequencing the RNA1 and RNA2 segments, and a quantitative real-time PCR (Q-PCR) assay was developed. Tissues from different organs were stained by immunohistochemistry (IHC). Samples were collected at random on Days 7, 25, 45, 69, 125 and 134 after challenge. Mortality, clinical signs and pathology of VER were observed only in the challenged group. The Q-PCR detected positive fish only in the challenged group, all of which were positive on all days of sampling. An increase in relative virus concentrations was observed from Day 7 to Day 25 post challenge. The increased level of virus concentration was maintained in the medulla oblongata throughout the experiment, suggesting persistence or slow elimination of the virus over time. The IHC detected positive cells on Days 34, 70 and 74. These results suggest that the nodavirus is transported to the medulla oblongata from the intraperitoneal injection site and is able to replicate in salmon. When injected, this nodavirus isolate caused mortality and established a persistent infection in the challenged salmon throughout the experiment. This susceptibility suggests that co-location of salmon and marine species should be avoided until further studies of possible transmission have been carried out.Diseases of Aquatic Organisms 01/2006; 68(1):7-15. DOI:10.3354/dao068007 · 1.59 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Dragon grouper (Epinephelus lanceolatus) nervous necrosis virus (DGNNV) comprises 180 copies of capsid protein that encapsulate a bipartite genome of single-stranded (+)-RNAs. This study reports that virus-like particles (VLPs) are formed in Escherichia coli expressing the full-length ORF encoding the DGNNV capsid protein. Two sizes of VLPs are observed. The heavier particles resemble the native piscine nodavirus in size and stain permeability, while the lighter ones are approximately two-thirds of the full size. The recombinant VLPs block attachment of native virus to the surface of cultured fish nerve cells, blocking infection by the native virus.Journal of General Virology 07/2003; 84(Pt 6):1577-82. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Betanodaviruses are causative agents of neurological disorders in several species of fish. We cloned and sequenced the RNA2 segment of two grouper viruses isolated from Epinephelus malabaricus (malabaricus grouper nervous necrosis virus, MGNNV) and Epinephelus lanceolatus (dragon grouper nervous necrosis virus, DGNNV). The sequences of the two RNAs were 99% identical and comparison with previously sequenced RNA2 segments of fish nodaviruses striped jack nervous necrosis virus, Atlantic halibut virus, sea bass encephalitis virus, and greasy grouper nervous necrosis virus (GGNNV) revealed that MGNNV and DGNNV were most closely related to GGNNV. No correlation of sequence with geographical habitat was detected. The MGNNV coat protein, the gene product of RNA2, was expressed in Sf21 cells with a recombinant baculovirus system and virus-like particles (VLPs) spontaneously formed. Two types of VLPs were observed: a slower sedimenting particle was RNase-sensitive and stain-permeable, while the faster sedimenting particle survived RNase treatment and was not stain-permeable. An image reconstruction of the latter, obtained with electron cryomicroscopy data, revealed a morphology consistent with T = 3 quasi-symmetry but with features significantly different from insect nodavirus structures at the same resolution. This assembly system allows the first biophysical comparisons of fish and insect nodavirus structure, assembly, and stability.Virology 12/2001; 290(1):50-8. DOI:10.1006/viro.2001.1157 · 3.28 Impact Factor