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Open AccessArticle

Genetic Variability of Chikungunya Virus in Southern Mexico

Departamento de Bioquímica y Medicina Molecular, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo Leon, Av. Francisco I. Madero S/N, Mitras Centro, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon 64460, Mexico
Departamento de Ciencias Básicas. Escuela de Medicina, Universidad de Monterrey, Av. Morones Prieto No. 4500 pte, San Pedro Garza García, Nuevo Leon 64238, Mexico
Clínica Hospital Dr. Roberto Nettel Flores, Instituto de Seguridad y Servicios Sociales de los Trabajadores del Estado, Av. Tuxtepec y Oaxaca S/N, Francisco Villa, Tapachula, Chiapas 30740, Mexico
Centro Regional de Investigación en Salud Publica, Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica 4a Avenida Norte, esquina con calle 19 poniente S/N, Centro, Tapachula, Chiapas 30700, Mexico
Facultad de Ciencias Biologicas, Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon, Av. Pedro de Alba S/N, Ciudad Universitaria, San Nicolas de los Garza, Nuevo Leon 66455, Mexico
Servicio de Infectologia—Hospital Universitario Dr. Jose Eleuterio Gonzalez, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon, Av. Francisco I. Madero and Eduardo Aguirre Pequeño S/N, Mitras Centro, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon 64460, Mexico
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Viruses 2019, 11(8), 714;
Received: 1 July 2019 / Revised: 23 July 2019 / Accepted: 23 July 2019 / Published: 5 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chikungunya Virus and (Re-) Emerging Alphaviruses)
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Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a mosquito-borne alphavirus that causes Chikungunya fever. CHIKV entered Mexico through the state of Chiapas in October 2014. To fully understand the Chikungunya fever outbreak that occurred in southern Chiapas during 2015, we evaluated 22 PCR-confirmed CHIKV-positive patients, identified CHIKV genetic variability, reconstructed viral dispersal, and assessed possible viral mutations. Viruses were isolated and E2, 6K, and E1 genes were sequenced. We applied phylogenetic and phylogeographic approaches, modeled mutations, and estimated selective pressure. Different CHIKV strains circulated in Chiapas during summer 2015. Three isolates grouped themselves in a well-supported clade. Estimates show that the outbreak started in Ciudad Hidalgo and posteriorly dispersed towards Tapachula and neighboring municipalities. We found six non-synonymous mutations in our isolates. Two mutations occurred in one isolate and the remaining mutations occurred in single isolates. Mutations E2 T116I and E2 K221R changed the protein surface in contact with the host cell receptors. We could not find positive selected sites in our CHIKV sequences from southern Chiapas. This is the first viral phylogeographic reconstruction in Mexico characterizing the CHIKV outbreak in southern Chiapas. View Full-Text
Keywords: Chikungunya; phylogeny; phylogeography; Mexico Chikungunya; phylogeny; phylogeography; Mexico

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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).

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Galan-Huerta, K.A.; Zomosa-Signoret, V.C.; Vidaltamayo, R.; Caballero-Sosa, S.; Fernández-Salas, I.; Ramos-Jiménez, J.; Rivas-Estilla, A.M. Genetic Variability of Chikungunya Virus in Southern Mexico. Viruses 2019, 11, 714.

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