A study of the evolution of coxsackievirus A24 variant in Ghana by viral RNA fingerprinting analysis

Virology Unit, Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra.
Research in Virology 01/1991; 142(1):57-65. DOI: 10.1016/0923-2516(91)90028-2
Source: PubMed


An epidemic of acute haemorrhagic conjunctivitis (AHC) caused by coxsackievirus A24 variant (CA24v) was reported in Accra, Ghana in May 1987. We studied 7 of the viral strains collected from May to November, 1987, by RNA genome fingerprinting. Pairwise comparisons of the oligonucleotide maps showed that genetic similarity among them ranged from between 60.0 to 84.7%. Using base sequence variations deduced from genetic similarity among the isolates, isolation time of the strains and the rate of nucleotide substitution (estimated in a previous paper, Miyamura et al., 1990), we calculated divergence times and constructed a phylogenetic tree. This tree indicated that all the 7 strains had diverged from each other from 11 to 26 months before the AHC epidemic in Accra. CA24v may have been introduced into the country or the neighbouring area, at least, more than two years earlier, i.e. in the early half of 1985.

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