Pseudorabies virus (PrV) is the etiological agent of Aujeszky’s disease, a viral infection that causes neurological lethal illness in mammals other than swine. Herein, we describe the occurrence of PrV infection in a hunting dog that had been bitten by an infected wild boar in Sicily, reporting for the first time genetic and phylogenetic data on the virus strain isolated in a dog in this Italian region. The dog was referred for severe neurological signs, respiratory distress, and intense itch around the muzzle. Death occurred within 48 h to the onset of clinical signs. On gross examination, self‐induced skin lesions to the head due to intense itching and diffuse cerebral congestion were observed, whereas mild, aspecific, nonsuppurative meningitis was histologically diagnosed. Diffuse PrV positivity in neurons of the brainstem was observed by immunohistochemistry. PrV DNA was isolated and amplified from olfactory bulbs by nested PCR, targeting the viral glycoprotein G gene, and the sequence obtained matched with sequences of PrV isolates from dogs and wild boar. Isolation of PrV in the dog herein analysed denotes the spread of the virus in wild boar populations in Sicily and provides a proof of direct interspecies transmission. Thus, there is an urgent need to increase our understanding of the epidemiology of the PrV infection in wildlife to provide tools to trace possible spill over into domestic pigs or other livestock.

First isolation and molecular characterization of pseudorabies virus in a hunting dog in Sicily (Southern Italy)

Abbate J. M.
Primo
Writing – Original Draft Preparation
;
Giannetto A.
Secondo
Formal Analysis
;
Iaria C.
Investigation
;
Riolo K.
Methodology
;
Lanteri G.
Ultimo
Supervision
2021-01-01

Abstract

Pseudorabies virus (PrV) is the etiological agent of Aujeszky’s disease, a viral infection that causes neurological lethal illness in mammals other than swine. Herein, we describe the occurrence of PrV infection in a hunting dog that had been bitten by an infected wild boar in Sicily, reporting for the first time genetic and phylogenetic data on the virus strain isolated in a dog in this Italian region. The dog was referred for severe neurological signs, respiratory distress, and intense itch around the muzzle. Death occurred within 48 h to the onset of clinical signs. On gross examination, self‐induced skin lesions to the head due to intense itching and diffuse cerebral congestion were observed, whereas mild, aspecific, nonsuppurative meningitis was histologically diagnosed. Diffuse PrV positivity in neurons of the brainstem was observed by immunohistochemistry. PrV DNA was isolated and amplified from olfactory bulbs by nested PCR, targeting the viral glycoprotein G gene, and the sequence obtained matched with sequences of PrV isolates from dogs and wild boar. Isolation of PrV in the dog herein analysed denotes the spread of the virus in wild boar populations in Sicily and provides a proof of direct interspecies transmission. Thus, there is an urgent need to increase our understanding of the epidemiology of the PrV infection in wildlife to provide tools to trace possible spill over into domestic pigs or other livestock.
2021
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11570/3217406
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