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Article

Avian Influenza a H9N2 Viruses in Morocco, 2018–2019

1
Avian Pathology Unit, Department of Veterinary Pathology and Public Health, Agronomy and Veterinary Institute Hassan II, Rabat B.P. 6202, Morocco
2
IHAP, Toulouse University, INRAE, ENVT, 31300 Toulouse, France
3
Department of Infectious Diseases, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis, TN 38105, USA
4
Anatomo-Pathology Unit, Department of Veterinary Pathology and Public Health, Agronomy and Veterinary Institute Hassan II, Rabat B.P. 6202, Morocco
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this article.
Academic Editor: Feng Li
Viruses 2022, 14(3), 529; https://doi.org/10.3390/v14030529
Received: 26 January 2022 / Revised: 28 February 2022 / Accepted: 2 March 2022 / Published: 4 March 2022
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
Low pathogenic H9N2 avian influenza (LPAI H9N2) is considered one of the most important diseases found in poultry (broiler, laying hens, breeding chickens, and turkeys). This infection causes considerable economic losses. The objective of this work was to monitor and assess the presence of avian influenza virus (AIV) H9N2 in eight different regions of Morocco using real-time RT-PCR, and to assess the phylogenetic and molecular evolution of the H9N2 viruses between 2016 and 2019. Field samples were collected from 108 farms suspected of being infected with LPAI H9N2 virus. Samples were analyzed using H9N2-specific real-time RT-PCR. Highly positive samples were subjected to virus isolation and seven isolates were fully sequenced. Low pathogenic H9N2 avian influenza virus was introduced in Morocco in 2016. We show that in 2018–2019, the virus was still present irrespective of vaccination status. Phylogenetic and molecular analyses showed mutations related to virulence, although our viruses were related to 2016 Moroccan viruses and grouped in the G1 lineage. Specific amino acid substitutions were identified in Moroccan H9N2 viruses that are believed to lead to increased resistance to antiviral drugs. View Full-Text
Keywords: low pathogenic avian influenza virus; H9N2; Morocco; sequencing; full genome low pathogenic avian influenza virus; H9N2; Morocco; sequencing; full genome
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sikht, F.-Z.; Ducatez, M.; Touzani, C.D.; Rubrum, A.; Webby, R.; El Houadfi, M.; Tligui, N.-S.; Camus, C.; Fellahi, S. Avian Influenza a H9N2 Viruses in Morocco, 2018–2019. Viruses 2022, 14, 529. https://doi.org/10.3390/v14030529

AMA Style

Sikht F-Z, Ducatez M, Touzani CD, Rubrum A, Webby R, El Houadfi M, Tligui N-S, Camus C, Fellahi S. Avian Influenza a H9N2 Viruses in Morocco, 2018–2019. Viruses. 2022; 14(3):529. https://doi.org/10.3390/v14030529

Chicago/Turabian Style

Sikht, Fatima-Zohra, Mariette Ducatez, Charifa Drissi Touzani, Adam Rubrum, Richard Webby, Mohammed El Houadfi, Nour-Said Tligui, Christelle Camus, and Siham Fellahi. 2022. "Avian Influenza a H9N2 Viruses in Morocco, 2018–2019" Viruses 14, no. 3: 529. https://doi.org/10.3390/v14030529

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