Special Issue "Equine Viruses"

A special issue of Viruses (ISSN 1999-4915). This special issue belongs to the section "Animal Viruses".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2019.

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Romain Paillot Website E-Mail
LABÉO-UniCaen (Biotargen EA 7450, Normandie Université), 14280 Saint Contest, France
Interests: equine Infectious diseases, equine Immunology, equine influenza, vaccines, equine herpesvirus

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has recently estimated that the world equid population exceeds 110 million (FAOSTAT 2017). Working equids (horses, ponies, donkeys, and mules) remain essential to ensure the livelihood of poor communities around the world. In many developed countries, the equine industry has a significant economical weight, with around 7 million horses in Europe alone. The close relationship between humans and equids and the fact that the athlete horse is the terrestrial mammal that travels the most worldwide after humans are important elements to consider in the transmission of pathogens and diseases, amongst equids and to other species. The potential effect of climate change on vector ecology and vector-borne diseases is also of concern for both human and animal health. 

With this Special Issue, we intend to explore our understanding of equine viruses, their pathogenicity, their importance in terms of welfare, their economic importance, and how their identification can be helped by new technologies. Beyond their potential risk to other species, including humans, equine viruses may also represent an interesting model for reproducing virus infection in the host species. 

Dr. Romain Paillot
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • virus
  • vaccine
  • equine
  • pathogenicity
  • emergence
  • model
  • identification

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessCommunication
Equid alphaherpesvirus 1 from Italian Horses: Evaluation of the Variability of the ORF30, ORF33, ORF34 and ORF68 Genes
Viruses 2019, 11(9), 851; https://doi.org/10.3390/v11090851 - 13 Sep 2019
Abstract
Equid alphaherpesvirus 1 (EHV-1) is an important pathogen of horses. It is spread worldwide and causes significant economic losses. The ORF33 gene has a conserved region that is often used as target in diagnostic PCR protocols. Single nucleotide point (SNP) mutations in ORF30 [...] Read more.
Equid alphaherpesvirus 1 (EHV-1) is an important pathogen of horses. It is spread worldwide and causes significant economic losses. The ORF33 gene has a conserved region that is often used as target in diagnostic PCR protocols. Single nucleotide point (SNP) mutations in ORF30 are usually used to distinguish between neuropathogenic and non-neuropathogenic genotypes. An ORF68 SNP-based scheme has been used for grouping different isolates. Recently, the highest number of variable sites in EHV-1 from the UK has been found in ORF34. In this study, EHV-1 positive samples from Italian horses with a history of abortion were investigated by amplifying and sequencing the ORF30, ORF33, ORF34 and ORF68 genes. Most animals were infected by the neuropathogenic type A2254G. A 118 bp deletion was found at nucleotide positions 701–818 of the ORF68 gene, making impossible to assign the samples to a known group. Sequencing of the ORF34 gene with a newly designed nested PCR showed new SNPs. Analysis of these sequences and of those obtained from genetic databases allowed the identification of at least 12 groups. These data add depth to the knowledge of EHV-1 genotypes circulating in Italy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Equine Viruses)
Open AccessArticle
Approach to Strain Selection and the Propagation of Viral Stocks for Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis Virus Vaccine Efficacy Testing under the Animal Rule
Viruses 2019, 11(9), 807; https://doi.org/10.3390/v11090807 - 31 Aug 2019
Abstract
Licensure of a vaccine to protect against aerosolized Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) requires use of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Animal Rule to assess vaccine efficacy as human studies are not feasible or ethical. An approach to selecting VEEV challenge [...] Read more.
Licensure of a vaccine to protect against aerosolized Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) requires use of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Animal Rule to assess vaccine efficacy as human studies are not feasible or ethical. An approach to selecting VEEV challenge strains for use under the Animal Rule was developed, taking into account Department of Defense (DOD) vaccine requirements, FDA Animal Rule guidelines, strain availability, and lessons learned from the generation of filovirus challenge agents within the Filovirus Animal Nonclinical Group (FANG). Initial down-selection to VEEV IAB and IC epizootic varieties was based on the DOD objective for vaccine protection in a bioterrorism event. The subsequent down-selection of VEEV IAB and IC isolates was based on isolate availability, origin, virulence, culture and animal passage history, known disease progression in animal models, relevancy to human disease, and ability to generate sufficient challenge material. Methods for the propagation of viral stocks (use of uncloned (wild-type), plaque-cloned, versus cDNA-cloned virus) to minimize variability in the potency of the resulting challenge materials were also reviewed. The presented processes for VEEV strain selection and the propagation of viral stocks may serve as a template for animal model development product testing under the Animal Rule to other viral vaccine programs. This manuscript is based on the culmination of work presented at the “Alphavirus Workshop” organized and hosted by the Joint Vaccine Acquisition Program (JVAP) on 15 December 2014 at Fort Detrick, Maryland, USA. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Equine Viruses)
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Open AccessCommunication
Identification of a Novel Equine Papillomavirus in Semen from a Thoroughbred Stallion with a Penile Lesion
Viruses 2019, 11(8), 713; https://doi.org/10.3390/v11080713 - 04 Aug 2019
Abstract
Papillomaviruses (PVs) have been identified in a wide range of animal species and are associated with a variety of disease syndromes including classical papillomatosis, aural plaques, and genital papillomas. In horses, 13 PVs have been described to date, falling into six genera. Using [...] Read more.
Papillomaviruses (PVs) have been identified in a wide range of animal species and are associated with a variety of disease syndromes including classical papillomatosis, aural plaques, and genital papillomas. In horses, 13 PVs have been described to date, falling into six genera. Using total RNA sequencing (meta-transcriptomics) we identified a novel equine papillomavirus in semen taken from a thoroughbred stallion suffering a genital lesion, which was confirmed by nested RT-PCR. We designate this novel virus Equus caballus papillomavirus 9 (EcPV9). The complete 7656 bp genome of EcPV9 exhibited similar characteristics to those of other horse papillomaviruses. Phylogenetic analysis based on concatenated E1-E2-L2-L1 amino acid sequences revealed that EcPV9 clustered with EcPV2, EcPV4, and EcPV5, although was distinct enough to represent a new viral species within the genus Dyoiotapapillomavirus (69.35%, 59.25%, and 58.00% nucleotide similarity to EcPV2, EcPV4, and EcPV5, respectively). In sum, we demonstrate the presence of a novel equine papillomavirus for which more detailed studies of disease association are merited. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Equine Viruses)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
African Horse Sickness: A Review of Current Understanding and Vaccine Development
Viruses 2019, 11(9), 844; https://doi.org/10.3390/v11090844 - 11 Sep 2019
Abstract
African horse sickness is a devastating disease that causes great suffering and many fatalities amongst horses in sub-Saharan Africa. It is caused by nine different serotypes of the orbivirus African horse sickness virus (AHSV) and it is spread by Culicoid midges. The disease [...] Read more.
African horse sickness is a devastating disease that causes great suffering and many fatalities amongst horses in sub-Saharan Africa. It is caused by nine different serotypes of the orbivirus African horse sickness virus (AHSV) and it is spread by Culicoid midges. The disease has significant economic consequences for the equine industry both in southern Africa and increasingly further afield as the geographic distribution of the midge vector broadens with global warming and climate change. Live attenuated vaccines (LAV) have been used with relative success for many decades but carry the risk of reversion to virulence and/or genetic re-assortment between outbreak and vaccine strains. Furthermore, the vaccines lack DIVA capacity, the ability to distinguish between vaccine-induced immunity and that induced by natural infection. These concerns have motivated interest in the development of new, more favourable recombinant vaccines that utilize viral vectors or are based on reverse genetics or virus-like particle technologies. This review summarizes the current understanding of AHSV structure and the viral replication cycle and also evaluates existing and potential vaccine strategies that may be applied to prevent or control the disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Equine Viruses)
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