Spatiotemporal Phylogenetic Analysis and Molecular Characterisation of Infectious Bursal Disease Viruses Based on the VP2 Hyper-Variable Region

Abdulahi Alfonso-Morales, Orlando Martínez-Pérez, Roser Dolz, Rosa Valle, Carmen L. Perera, Kateri Bertran, Maria T. Frías, Natàlia Majó, Llilianne Ganges, Lester J. Pérez

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22 Citations (Scopus)


Background:Infectious bursal disease is a highly contagious and acute viral disease caused by the infectious bursal disease virus (IBDV); it affects all major poultry producing areas of the world. The current study was designed to rigorously measure the global phylogeographic dynamics of IBDV strains to gain insight into viral population expansion as well as the emergence, spread and pattern of the geographical structure of very virulent IBDV (vvIBDV) strains.Methodology/Principal Findings:Sequences of the hyper-variable region of the VP2 (HVR-VP2) gene from IBDV strains isolated from diverse geographic locations were obtained from the GenBank database; Cuban sequences were obtained in the current work. All sequences were analysed by Bayesian phylogeographic analysis, implemented in the Bayesian Evolutionary Analysis Sampling Trees (BEAST), Bayesian Tip-association Significance testing (BaTS) and Spatial Phylogenetic Reconstruction of Evolutionary Dynamics (SPREAD) software packages. Selection pressure on the HVR-VP2 was also assessed. The phylogeographic association-trait analysis showed that viruses sampled from individual countries tend to cluster together, suggesting a geographic pattern for IBDV strains. Spatial analysis from this study revealed that strains carrying sequences that were linked to increased virulence of IBDV appeared in Iran in 1981 and spread to Western Europe (Belgium) in 1987, Africa (Egypt) around 1990, East Asia (China and Japan) in 1993, the Caribbean Region (Cuba) by 1995 and South America (Brazil) around 2000. Selection pressure analysis showed that several codons in the HVR-VP2 region were under purifying selection.Conclusions/Significance:To our knowledge, this work is the first study applying the Bayesian phylogeographic reconstruction approach to analyse the emergence and spread of vvIBDV strains worldwide. © 2013 Alfonso-Morales et al.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere65999
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jun 2013


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