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Distribution and Phylogeny of Erythrocytic Necrosis Virus (ENV) in Salmon Suggests Marine Origin

1
Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, University of British Columbia, 2207 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada
2
Pacific Biological Station, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, 3190 Hammond Bay Rd, Nanaimo, BC V9T 6N7, Canada
3
Biology Department, University of Victoria, 3800 Finnerty Rd, Victoria, BC V8P 5C2, Canada
4
Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of British Columbia, 2207 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada
5
Department of Botany, University of British Columbia, 2207 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada
6
Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries, University of British Columbia, 2207 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Viruses 2019, 11(4), 358; https://doi.org/10.3390/v11040358
Received: 17 March 2019 / Revised: 12 April 2019 / Accepted: 16 April 2019 / Published: 18 April 2019
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Abstract

Viral erythrocytic necrosis (VEN) affects over 20 species of marine and anadromous fishes in the North Atlantic and North Pacific Oceans. However, the distribution and strain variation of its viral causative agent, erythrocytic necrosis virus (ENV), has not been well characterized within Pacific salmon. Here, metatranscriptomic sequencing of Chinook salmon revealed that ENV infecting salmon was closely related to ENV from Pacific herring, with inferred amino-acid sequences from Chinook salmon being 99% identical to those reported for herring. Sequence analysis also revealed 89 protein-encoding sequences attributed to ENV, greatly expanding the amount of genetic information available for this virus. High-throughput PCR of over 19,000 fish showed that ENV is widely distributed in the NE Pacific Ocean and was detected in 12 of 16 tested species, including in 27% of herring, 38% of anchovy, 17% of pollock, and 13% of sand lance. Despite frequent detection in marine fish, ENV prevalence was significantly lower in fish from freshwater (0.03%), as assessed with a generalized linear mixed effects model (p = 5.5 × 10−8). Thus, marine fish are likely a reservoir for the virus. High genetic similarity between ENV obtained from salmon and herring also suggests that transmission between these hosts is likely. View Full-Text
Keywords: erythrocytic necrosis virus (ENV); viral erythrocytic necrosis (VEN); Pacific salmon; Pacific herring; British Columbia erythrocytic necrosis virus (ENV); viral erythrocytic necrosis (VEN); Pacific salmon; Pacific herring; British Columbia
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Pagowski, V.A.; Mordecai, G.J.; Miller, K.M.; Schulze, A.D.; Kaukinen, K.H.; Ming, T.J.; Li, S.; Teffer, A.K.; Tabata, A.; Suttle, C.A. Distribution and Phylogeny of Erythrocytic Necrosis Virus (ENV) in Salmon Suggests Marine Origin. Viruses 2019, 11, 358.

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