Porcine deltacoronavirus (PDCoV) is a newly emerging enteric pathogen in swine that causes diarrhea in neonatal piglets and creates an additional economic burden on porcine industries in Asia and North America. In this study, a PDCoV isolate, CHN-SC2015, was isolated from Sichuan Province in southwest China. The isolate was characterized by a cytopathic effect, immunofluorescence, and electron microscopy. CHN-SC2015 titers in LLC-PK cells ranged from 104.31
/mL during the first 30 passages. During serial passage, 11 nucleotide mutations occurred in the S gene, resulting in nine amino acid changes. A whole genome sequencing analysis demonstrated that CHN-SC2015 shares 97.5%–99.1% identity with 59 reference strains in GenBank. Furthermore, CHN-SC2015 contained 6-nt deletion and 9-nt insertion in the ORF1ab gene, 3-nt deletion in the S gene and 11-nt deletion in its 3′UTR compared with other reference strains available in GenBank. A phylogenetic analysis showed that CHN-SC2015 is more closely related to other PDCoV strains in China than to the strains from Southeast Asia, USA, Japan, and South Korea, indicating the diversity of genetic relationships and regional and epidemic characteristics among these strains. A recombination analysis indicated that CHN-SC2015 experienced recombination events between SHJS/SL/2016 and TT-1115. In vivo infection demonstrated that CHN-SC2015 is highly pathogenic to sucking piglets, causing diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration, and death. Virus was shed daily in the feces of infected piglets and upon necropsy, was found distributed in the gastrointestinal tract and in multiple organs. CHN-SC2015 is the first systematically characterized strain from southwest China hitherto reported. Our results enrich the body of information on the epidemiology, pathogenicity and molecular evolution associated with PDCoV.
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