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Viruses 2017, 9(6), 158; doi:10.3390/v9060158

Co-Infection with Marek’s Disease Virus and Reticuloendotheliosis Virus Increases Illness Severity and Reduces Marek’s Disease Vaccine Efficacy

Division of Avian Immunosuppressive Diseases, State Key Laboratory of Veterinary Biotechnology, Harbin Veterinary Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Harbin 150069, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
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Received: 25 April 2017 / Revised: 19 June 2017 / Accepted: 20 June 2017 / Published: 21 June 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Antivirals & Vaccines)
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Abstract

Marek’s disease virus (MDV) and reticuloendotheliosis virus (REV) cause Marek’s disease (MD) and reticuloendotheliosis (RE), respectively. Co-infection with MDV and REV is common in chickens, causing serious losses to the poultry industry. However, experimental studies of such co-infection are lacking. In this study, Chinese field strains of MDV (ZW/15) and REV (JLR1501) were used as challenge viruses to evaluate the pathogenicity of co-infection and the influence of MD vaccination in chickens. Compared to the MDV-challenged group, the mortality and tumor rates increased significantly by 20.0% (76.7 to 96.7%) and 26.7% (53.3 to 80.0%), in the co-challenged group, respectively. The protective index of the MD vaccines CVI988 and 814 decreased by 33.3 (80.0 to 47.7) and 13.3 (90.0 to 76.7), respectively. These results indicated that MDV and REV co-infection significantly increased disease severity and reduced the vaccine efficacy. The MDV genome load showed no difference in the feather pulps and spleen, and pathogenicity-related MDV gene expression (meq, pp38, vIL-8, and ICP4) in the spleen significantly increased at some time points in the co-challenged group. Clearly, synergistic pathogenicity occurred between MDV and REV, and the protective efficacy of existing MD vaccines was attenuated by co-infection with Chinese field MDV and REV strains. View Full-Text
Keywords: Marek’s disease virus; reticuloendotheliosis virus; co-infection; pathogenicity; vaccine efficacy Marek’s disease virus; reticuloendotheliosis virus; co-infection; pathogenicity; vaccine efficacy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sun, G.-R.; Zhang, Y.-P.; Zhou, L.-Y.; Lv, H.-C.; Zhang, F.; Li, K.; Gao, Y.-L.; Qi, X.-L.; Cui, H.-Y.; Wang, Y.-Q.; Gao, L.; Pan, Q.; Wang, X.-M.; Liu, C.-J. Co-Infection with Marek’s Disease Virus and Reticuloendotheliosis Virus Increases Illness Severity and Reduces Marek’s Disease Vaccine Efficacy. Viruses 2017, 9, 158.

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