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Article

Geographical Distribution and Genetic Diversity of Bank Vole Hepaciviruses in Europe

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Institute of Novel and Emerging Infectious Diseases, Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Federal Research Institute for Animal Health, 17493 Greifswald-Insel Riems, Germany
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Institute of Virology, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, 10117 Berlin, Germany
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Institute of Diagnostic Virology, Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Federal Research Institute for Animal Health, 17493 Greifswald-Insel Riems, Germany
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Research and Innovation Centre, Department of Biodiversity and Molecular Ecology, Fondazione Edmund Mach, 38098 San Michele all’Adige, Italy
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Department of Virology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Helsinki, 00100 Helsinki, Finland
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Vertebrate Research, Federal Research Centre for Cultivated Plants, Institute for Plant Protection in Horticulture and Forests, Julius Kühn-Institute (JKI), Toppheideweg 88, 48161 Münster, Germany
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Department of Wildlife, Fish, and Environmental Studies, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, 90183 Umeå, Sweden
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Unit for Nature Conservation, County Administrative Board of Halland County, 30004 Halmstad, Sweden
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Direzione Generale Welfare, U.O. Veterinaria, Piazza Città di Lombardia 1, 20124 Milan, Italy
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Centre for Infectious Disease Control, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), 3720 Bilthoven, The Netherlands
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Faculty of Mathematics, Natural Sciences and Information Technologies, University of Primorska, 6000 Koper, Slovenia
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Environmental Protection College, 3320 Velenje, Slovenia
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Institute of Zoology, Slovak Academy of Sciences (SAS), 81438 Bratislava, Slovakia
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Institute of Parasitology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Hlinkova 3, 04001 Košice, Slovakia
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Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA2 0QZ, UK
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Institute of Animal Hygiene and Veterinary Public Health, University of Leipzig, 04109 Leipzig, Germany
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Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies and Roslin Institute, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh EH8 9AB, UK
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Melbourne Veterinary School, Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC 3052, Australia
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Martsinovsky Institute of Medical Parasitology, Tropical and Vector-Borne Diseases, Sechenov University, 119991 Moscow, Russia
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German Centre for Infection Research (DZIF), Associated Partner Site Berlin, 10117 Berlin, Germany
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Department Virology and Rickettsiology, Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology, 80937 Munich, Germany
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Natural Resources Institute Finland (LUKE), 00791 Helsinki, Finland
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Institute of Ecology and Evolution, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Current affiliation.
Academic Editor: Rod Russell
Viruses 2021, 13(7), 1258; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13071258
Received: 17 May 2021 / Revised: 15 June 2021 / Accepted: 17 June 2021 / Published: 28 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rodent-Borne Viruses)
The development of new diagnostic methods resulted in the discovery of novel hepaciviruses in wild populations of the bank vole (Myodes glareolus, syn. Clethrionomys glareolus). The naturally infected voles demonstrate signs of hepatitis similar to those induced by hepatitis C virus (HCV) in humans. The aim of the present research was to investigate the geographical distribution of bank vole-associated hepaciviruses (BvHVs) and their genetic diversity in Europe. Real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) screening revealed BvHV RNA in 442 out of 1838 (24.0%) bank voles from nine European countries and in one of seven northern red-backed voles (Myodes rutilus, syn. Clethrionomys rutilus). BvHV RNA was not found in any other small mammal species (n = 23) tested here. Phylogenetic and isolation-by-distance analyses confirmed the occurrence of both BvHV species (Hepacivirus F and Hepacivirus J) and their sympatric occurrence at several trapping sites in two countries. The broad geographical distribution of BvHVs across Europe was associated with their presence in bank voles of different evolutionary lineages. The extensive geographical distribution and high levels of genetic diversity of BvHVs, as well as the high population fluctuations of bank voles and occasional commensalism in some parts of Europe warrant future studies on the zoonotic potential of BvHVs. View Full-Text
Keywords: bank vole hepaciviruses; HCV; Hepacivirus F; Hepacivirus J; rodent-borne pathogen; Europe; emerging virus bank vole hepaciviruses; HCV; Hepacivirus F; Hepacivirus J; rodent-borne pathogen; Europe; emerging virus
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MDPI and ACS Style

Schneider, J.; Hoffmann, B.; Fevola, C.; Schmidt, M.L.; Imholt, C.; Fischer, S.; Ecke, F.; Hörnfeldt, B.; Magnusson, M.; Olsson, G.E.; Rizzoli, A.; Tagliapietra, V.; Chiari, M.; Reusken, C.; Bužan, E.; Kazimirova, M.; Stanko, M.; White, T.A.; Reil, D.; Obiegala, A.; Meredith, A.; Drexler, J.F.; Essbauer, S.; Henttonen, H.; Jacob, J.; Hauffe, H.C.; Beer, M.; Heckel, G.; Ulrich, R.G. Geographical Distribution and Genetic Diversity of Bank Vole Hepaciviruses in Europe. Viruses 2021, 13, 1258. https://doi.org/10.3390/v13071258

AMA Style

Schneider J, Hoffmann B, Fevola C, Schmidt ML, Imholt C, Fischer S, Ecke F, Hörnfeldt B, Magnusson M, Olsson GE, Rizzoli A, Tagliapietra V, Chiari M, Reusken C, Bužan E, Kazimirova M, Stanko M, White TA, Reil D, Obiegala A, Meredith A, Drexler JF, Essbauer S, Henttonen H, Jacob J, Hauffe HC, Beer M, Heckel G, Ulrich RG. Geographical Distribution and Genetic Diversity of Bank Vole Hepaciviruses in Europe. Viruses. 2021; 13(7):1258. https://doi.org/10.3390/v13071258

Chicago/Turabian Style

Schneider, Julia, Bernd Hoffmann, Cristina Fevola, Marie L. Schmidt, Christian Imholt, Stefan Fischer, Frauke Ecke, Birger Hörnfeldt, Magnus Magnusson, Gert E. Olsson, Annapaola Rizzoli, Valentina Tagliapietra, Mario Chiari, Chantal Reusken, Elena Bužan, Maria Kazimirova, Michal Stanko, Thomas A. White, Daniela Reil, Anna Obiegala, Anna Meredith, Jan F. Drexler, Sandra Essbauer, Heikki Henttonen, Jens Jacob, Heidi C. Hauffe, Martin Beer, Gerald Heckel, and Rainer G. Ulrich. 2021. "Geographical Distribution and Genetic Diversity of Bank Vole Hepaciviruses in Europe" Viruses 13, no. 7: 1258. https://doi.org/10.3390/v13071258

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