Next Article in Journal
Importance of Autophagy in Mediating Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Morphine-Induced Metabolic Dysfunction and Inflammation in Human Astrocytes
Next Article in Special Issue
Evaluation of Taterapox Virus in Small Animals
Previous Article in Journal
HBV Drug Resistance Substitutions Existed before the Clinical Approval of Nucleos(t)ide Analogues: A Bioinformatic Analysis by GenBank Data Mining
Previous Article in Special Issue
Classification of Cowpox Viruses into Several Distinct Clades and Identification of a Novel Lineage
Article Menu
Issue 8 (August) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Viruses 2017, 9(8), 200; doi:10.3390/v9080200

Characterization of Two Historic Smallpox Specimens from a Czech Museum

1
Military Health Institute, Military Medical Agency, Tychonova 1, 160 01 Prague 6, Czech Republic
2
Institute of Molecular Genetics of the ASCR, v. v. i., Vídeňská 1083, 142 20 Prague 4, Czech Republic
3
National Museum, Department of Anthropology, Václavské náměstí 68, 115 79 Praha 1, Czech Republic
4
Faculty of Military Health Sciences, University of Defence, Třebešská 1575, 500 01 Hradec Králové, Czech Republic
5
Laboratory of Applied Proteome Analyses, Institute of Animal Physiology and Genetics, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Rumburská 89, 277 21 Liběchov, Czech Republic
6
Genomics Core Facility, EMBL Heidelberg, Meyerhofstraße 1, 69117 Heidelberg, Germany
7
Institute of Pathology of the First Faculty of Medicine and General Teaching Hospital, Studničkova 2, 128 00 Prague, Czech Republic
8
Institute of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology, First Faculty of Medicine, Charles University and General University Hospital in Prague, Studničkova 4, 128 21, Praha 2, Czech Republic
9
Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS, Flemingovo náměstí 542/2, 166 10 Praha 6, Czech Republic
10
Military Institute of Forensic Medicine, Military University Hospital Prague, U Vojenské nemocnice 1200, 169 02 Praha 6
11
Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology, Neuherbergstr. 11, 80937 Munich, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Eric O. Freed
Received: 26 June 2017 / Revised: 22 July 2017 / Accepted: 25 July 2017 / Published: 27 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smallpox and Emerging Zoonotic Orthopoxviruses: What Is Coming Next?)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [4755 KB, uploaded 29 July 2017]   |  

Abstract

Although smallpox has been known for centuries, the oldest available variola virus strains were isolated in the early 1940s. At that time, large regions of the world were already smallpox-free. Therefore, genetic information of these strains can represent only the very last fraction of a long evolutionary process. Based on the genomes of 48 strains, two clades are differentiated: Clade 1 includes variants of variola major, and clade 2 includes West African and variola minor (Alastrim) strains. Recently, the genome of an almost 400-year-old Lithuanian mummy was determined, which fell basal to all currently sequenced strains of variola virus on phylogenetic trees. Here, we determined two complete variola virus genomes from human tissues kept in a museum in Prague dating back 60 and 160 years, respectively. Moreover, mass spectrometry-based proteomic, chemical, and microscopic examinations were performed. The 60-year-old specimen was most likely an importation from India, a country with endemic smallpox at that time. The genome of the 160-year-old specimen is related to clade 2 West African and variola minor strains. This sequence likely represents a new endemic European variant of variola virus circulating in the midst of the 19th century in Europe. View Full-Text
Keywords: smallpox; variola virus; evolution; next generation sequencing; historic specimen; phylogeny smallpox; variola virus; evolution; next generation sequencing; historic specimen; phylogeny
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Supplementary material

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Pajer, P.; Dresler, J.; Kabíckova, H.; Písa, L.; Aganov, P.; Fucik, K.; Elleder, D.; Hron, T.; Kuzelka, V.; Velemínsky, P.; Klimentova, J.; Fucikova, A.; Pejchal, J.; Hrabakova, R.; Benes, V.; Rausch, T.; Dundr, P.; Pilin, A.; Cabala, R.; Hubalek, M.; Stríbrny, J.; Antwerpen, M.H.; Meyer, H. Characterization of Two Historic Smallpox Specimens from a Czech Museum. Viruses 2017, 9, 200.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Viruses EISSN 1999-4915 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top