Special Issue "Recent Studies of Arthropod-, Bat- and Rodent-Borne Viruses: A Theme Issue in Honor of Professor Charles H. Calisher"

A special issue of Diseases (ISSN 2079-9721). This special issue belongs to the section "Infectious Disease".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2022) | Viewed by 9128

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Rebekah C. Kading
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Microbiology Immunology and Pathology, Arthropod-borne and Infectious Diseases Laboratory, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523-1692, USA
Interests: medical entomology; emerging arboviruses; bat-borne viruses; disease ecology; vector competence; Rift Valley fever virus
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Amy Lambert
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Reference and Reagent Laboratory, Arbovirus Diseases Branch, Division of Vector-Borne Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fort Collins, CO, USA
Interests: Orphan arboviruses; evolution; emergence; detection

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Vector-borne and zoonotic viruses continue to emerge and cause a significant threat to human and animal health. Arboviruses such as Zika virus, West Nile virus, dengue viruses, and Crimean Congo hemorrhagic fever virus have repeatedly crossed major geographic boundaries to emerge and establish in new geographic areas and populations. Zoonoses harbored in rodents and bats, two extraordinarily diverse mammalian taxa, comprise a wide array of agents pathogenic to humans. Increasing global connectivity, land use changes, and myriad vulnerabilities at the human–animal interface have facilitated the cross-species transmission and transboundary movement of these infectious agents. Still amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, knowing the identity and natural history of pathogenic viruses as well as the drivers of their emergence is paramount.

We dedicate this special issue to Dr. Charles H. Calisher, colleague, mentor, and friend, whose legacy in the field of virology is unmatched. In his early career, Dr. Calisher completed his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees at the University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indiana, USA and the Georgetown School of Medicine, Washington, D.C., USA, respectively. Over the past 60 years, he has engaged in nearly all aspects of study of viral zoonoses, with a particular emphasis on orphan pathogens, at premier international academic, private, and public health institutions. Among his many contributions to the field are the discovery and characterization of countless arboviruses around the world, investigations into the role of migratory birds in arbovirus dispersal, responses to transboundary disease outbreaks including that of Venezuelan equine encephalitis, descriptions of the natural history of hantaviruses in the Western United States, and his pioneering influence in research on the role of bats as reservoirs for emerging viruses. Dr. Calisher is currently Professor Emeritus in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Pathology at Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA. He is world-renowned for his intellect, unparalleled writing and editorial skills, and wit that have resulted in a body of work greater than 400 documents, including peer-reviewed manuscripts, book chapters, volumes, and offerings of thought-provoking opinions. Dr. Calisher’s extensive work on orphan viral zoonoses has been well recognized by numerous esteemed and highly selective international awarding bodies. In honor of Dr. Calisher’s broad-reaching, diverse, impactful, and prolific contributions, we seek manuscripts describing original research designed to improve our understanding of the diversity, ecology, epidemiology, and epizoology of arthropod-, bat-, and rodent-borne viruses. Manuscripts describing studies that further our ability to detect and understand viral zoonotic pathogenicity and disease emergence are of particular interest for publication in this Themed Issue.

Dr. Rebekah C. Kading
Dr. Amy Lambert
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Diseases is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • arbovirus
  • bat virus
  • detection
  • ecology
  • emergence
  • epidemiology
  • epizoology
  • evolution
  • rodent virus

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Editorial

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Editorial
Introduction and Tribute to Charlie Calisher
Diseases 2021, 9(4), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/diseases9040075 - 20 Oct 2021
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Abstract
It is a great pleasure to contribute a few words of introduction to this Special Issue of MDPI’s Diseases entitled “Recent Studies of Arthropod-, Bat-, and Rodent-Borne Viruses: A Theme Issue in Honor of Professor Charles H [...] Full article
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Research

Jump to: Editorial

Communication
Yata Virus (Family Rhabdoviridae, Genus Ephemerovirus) Isolation from Mosquitoes from Uganda, the First Reported Isolation since 1969
Diseases 2023, 11(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/diseases11010021 (registering DOI) - 28 Jan 2023
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Abstract
As a part of a systematic study of mosquitoes and associated viruses in Uganda, a virus was isolated from a pool of Mansonia uniformis collected in July 2017, in the Kitgum District of northern Uganda. Sequence analysis determined that the virus is Yata [...] Read more.
As a part of a systematic study of mosquitoes and associated viruses in Uganda, a virus was isolated from a pool of Mansonia uniformis collected in July 2017, in the Kitgum District of northern Uganda. Sequence analysis determined that the virus is Yata virus (YATAV; Ephemerovirus yata; family Rhabdoviridae). The only previous reported isolation of YATAV was in 1969 in Birao, Central African Republic, also from Ma. uniformis mosquitoes. The current sequence is over 99% identical at the nucleotide level to the original isolate, indicating a high level of YATAV genomic stability. Full article
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Article
Exposure of Egyptian Rousette Bats (Rousettus aegyptiacus) and a Little Free-Tailed Bat (Chaerephon pumilus) to Alphaviruses in Uganda
Diseases 2022, 10(4), 121; https://doi.org/10.3390/diseases10040121 - 05 Dec 2022
Viewed by 660
Abstract
The reservoir for zoonotic o’nyong-nyong virus (ONNV) has remained unknown since this virus was first recognized in Uganda in 1959. Building on existing evidence for mosquito blood-feeding on various frugivorous bat species in Uganda, and seroprevalence for arboviruses among bats in Uganda, we [...] Read more.
The reservoir for zoonotic o’nyong-nyong virus (ONNV) has remained unknown since this virus was first recognized in Uganda in 1959. Building on existing evidence for mosquito blood-feeding on various frugivorous bat species in Uganda, and seroprevalence for arboviruses among bats in Uganda, we sought to assess if serum samples collected from bats in Uganda demonstrated evidence of exposure to ONNV or the closely related zoonotic chikungunya virus (CHIKV). In total, 652 serum samples collected from six bat species were tested by plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT) for neutralizing antibodies against ONNV and CHIKV. Forty out of 303 (13.2%) Egyptian rousettes from Maramagambo Forest and 1/13 (8%) little free-tailed bats from Banga Nakiwogo, Entebbe contained neutralizing antibodies against ONNV. In addition, 2/303 (0.7%) of these Egyptian rousettes contained neutralizing antibodies to CHIKV, and 8/303 (2.6%) contained neutralizing antibodies that were nonspecifically reactive to alphaviruses. These data support the interepidemic circulation of ONNV and CHIKV in Uganda, although Egyptian rousette bats are unlikely to serve as reservoirs for these viruses given the inconsistent occurrence of antibody-positive bats. Full article
Article
Ensemble Models for Tick Vectors: Standard Surveys Compared with Convenience Samples
Diseases 2022, 10(2), 32; https://doi.org/10.3390/diseases10020032 - 08 Jun 2022
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Abstract
Ensembles of Species Distribution Models (SDMs) represent the geographic ranges of pathogen vectors by combining alternative analytical approaches and merging information on vector occurrences with more extensive environmental data. Biased collection data impact SDMs, regardless of the target species, but no studies have [...] Read more.
Ensembles of Species Distribution Models (SDMs) represent the geographic ranges of pathogen vectors by combining alternative analytical approaches and merging information on vector occurrences with more extensive environmental data. Biased collection data impact SDMs, regardless of the target species, but no studies have compared the differences in the distributions predicted by the ensemble models when different sampling frameworks are used for the same species. We compared Ensemble SDMs for two important Ixodid tick vectors, Amblyomma americanum and Ixodes scapularis in mainland Florida, USA, when inputs were either convenience samples of ticks, or collections obtained using the standard protocols promulgated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Ensemble SDMs for the convenience samples and standard surveys showed only a slight agreement (Kappa = 0.060, A. americanum; 0.053, I. scapularis). Convenience sample SDMs indicated A. americanum and I. scapularis should be absent from nearly one third (34.5% and 30.9%, respectively) of the state where standard surveys predicted the highest likelihood of occurrence. Ensemble models from standard surveys predicted 81.4% and 72.5% (A. americanum and I. scapularis) of convenience sample sites. Omission errors by standard survey SDMs of the convenience collections were associated almost exclusively with either adjacency to at least one SDM, or errors in geocoding algorithms that failed to correctly locate geographic locations of convenience samples. These errors emphasize commonly overlooked needs to explicitly evaluate and improve data quality for arthropod survey data that are applied to spatial models. Full article
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Article
Genomic Evaluation of the Genus Coltivirus Indicates Genetic Diversity among Colorado Tick Fever Virus Strains and Demarcation of a New Species
Diseases 2021, 9(4), 92; https://doi.org/10.3390/diseases9040092 - 17 Dec 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1792
Abstract
The type species of the genus Coltivirus, Colorado tick fever virus (CTFV), was discovered in 1943 and is the most common tick-borne viral infection in the Western US. Despite its long history, very little is known about the molecular diversity of viruses [...] Read more.
The type species of the genus Coltivirus, Colorado tick fever virus (CTFV), was discovered in 1943 and is the most common tick-borne viral infection in the Western US. Despite its long history, very little is known about the molecular diversity of viruses classified within the species Colorado tick fever coltivirus. Previous studies have suggested genetic variants and potential serotypes of CTFV, but limited genetic sequence information is available for CTFV strains. To address this knowledge gap, we report herein the full-length genomes of five strains of CTFV, including Salmon River virus and California hare coltivirus (CTFV-Ca). The sequence from the full-length genome of Salmon River virus identified a high genetic identity to the CTFV prototype strain with >90% amino acid identity in all the segments except segment four, suggesting Salmon River virus is a strain of the species Colorado tick fever coltivirus. Additionally, analysis suggests that segment four has been associated with reassortment in at least one strain. The CTFV-Ca full-length genomic sequence was highly variable from the prototype CTFV in all the segments. The genome of CTFV-Ca was most similar to the Eyach virus, including similar segments six and seven. These data suggest that CTFV-Ca is not a strain of CTFV but a unique species. Additional sequence information of CTFV strains will improve the molecular surveillance tools and provide additional taxonomic resolution to this understudied virus. Full article
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Article
Viral Ecology and Natural Infection Dynamics of Kaeng Khoi Virus in Cave-Dwelling Wrinkle-Lipped Free-Tailed Bats (Chaerephon plicatus) in Thailand
Diseases 2021, 9(4), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/diseases9040073 - 15 Oct 2021
Viewed by 1934
Abstract
Kaeng Khoi virus (KKV; Order: Bunyavirales), is an endemic viral infection of the wrinkle-lipped free-tailed bat (Chaerephon plicatus aka Tadarida plicata plicata). Little is known about the ecology and maintenance of KKV within the bat population, nor the infection dynamics [...] Read more.
Kaeng Khoi virus (KKV; Order: Bunyavirales), is an endemic viral infection of the wrinkle-lipped free-tailed bat (Chaerephon plicatus aka Tadarida plicata plicata). Little is known about the ecology and maintenance of KKV within the bat population, nor the infection dynamics and transmission among bats or between bats and other vertebrates. Therefore, KKV was studied in Kaeng Khoi cave, Saraburi province, Thailand, during 1973–1974 with the objectives to (1) characterize the seasonal infection rates of KKV in the context of the bat population ecology, and (2) describe the infection dynamics and viral shedding by naturally- and experimentally-infected bats. To this end, the free-tailed bat population was estimated by a series of timed photographs taken during the evening exodus. The case population of 900,000 adult bats doubled at the time of weaning of the young and returned to its previous level soon thereafter. The newborn bats had neutralizing antibodies to KKV that were likely to be maternal in origin. The KKV antibody prevalence in adult bats was high (69–91%) in March–May and low (29–40%) in August and September. Kaeng Khoi virus was isolated from 75% of dead and 50% of moribund bats, but was not found in nearly 400 apparently healthy bats. Virus was present in saliva, urine and blood of most of the naturally-moribund bats tested. Consistent with observations from naturally-infected bats, experimental infection of bats with KKV revealed significant liver pathology, also suggestive that this is not a benign infection. Kaeng Khoi virus is an endemic, year-round infection maintained by the annual recruitment of a large number of immunologically-naïve juvenile bats. Moreover, it produces an acute infection in the bat, either leading to death by hepatitis, or immunity. Full article
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