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Diversity of Astroviruses Circulating in Humans, Bats, and Wild Birds in Egypt

Center of Scientific Excellence for Influenza Virus, Environmental Research Division, National Research Centre, El-Buhouth Street, Dokki, Giza 12311, Egypt
Microbiology Department, Faculty of Science, Ain Shams University, Cairo 11566, Egypt
Human Link, Hazmieh 1109, Lebanon
Department of Epidemiology, Human Genetics, and Environmental Sciences, University of Texas, Houston, TX 77030, USA
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Contributed equally as first authors.
To whom correspondence may be addressed.
Viruses 2020, 12(5), 485;
Received: 14 February 2020 / Revised: 17 April 2020 / Accepted: 24 April 2020 / Published: 26 April 2020
Astroviruses belong to Astroviridae family which includes two main genera: Mamastroviruses that infect mammals, and Avastroviruses that infect avian hosts. Bats and wild birds are considered among the natural reservoirs for astroviruses. Infections in humans are associated with severe gastroenteritis, especially among children. We conducted surveillance for astroviruses in bats, wild birds, and humans in Egypt. Our results indicated relatively high prevalence of astroviruses in those hosts. Phylogenetic analysis revealed diversity of these viruses within hosts. Detected human viruses showed similarity with classic and variant human astroviruses, as well as similarity with animal-origin viruses. Viruses in bats were dispersed, with similarities to other bat viruses as well as other mammalian, including human, viruses. Wild bird viruses varied and were related to other avastroviruses, as well as human astroviruses. Our results indicate that astroviruses are common in bats, wild birds, and humans in Egypt, with a wide gene pool. Potential cross-species transmission may be occurring but should be verified by further surveillance and molecular studies. View Full-Text
Keywords: Astroviruses; bat viruses; Egypt; Mamastroviruses; Avastroviruses Astroviruses; bat viruses; Egypt; Mamastroviruses; Avastroviruses
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El Taweel, A.; Kandeil, A.; Barakat, A.; Alfaroq Rabiee, O.; Kayali, G.; Ali, M.A. Diversity of Astroviruses Circulating in Humans, Bats, and Wild Birds in Egypt. Viruses 2020, 12, 485.

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