Molecular Phylogeny of Mobatviruses (Hantaviridae) in Myanmar and Vietnam.
ABSTRACT: The discovery of highly divergent lineages of hantaviruses (family Hantaviridae) in shrews, moles, and bats of multiple species raises the possibility that non-rodent hosts may have played a significant role in their evolutionary history. To further investigate this prospect, total RNA was extracted from RNAlater®-preserved lung tissues of 277 bats (representing five families, 14 genera and 40 species), captured in Myanmar and Vietnam during 2013?2016. Hantavirus RNA was detected in two of 15 black-bearded tomb bats (Taphozous melanopogon) and two of 26 Pomona roundleaf bats (Hipposideros pomona) in Myanmar, and in three of six ashy leaf-nosed bats (Hipposideros cineraceus) in Vietnam. Pair-wise alignment and comparison of coding regions of the S, M, and L segments of hantaviruses from Taphozous and Hipposideros bats revealed high nucleotide and amino acid sequence similarities to prototype Láib?n virus (LAIV) and Xuân S?n virus (XSV), respectively. Phylogenetic analyses, generated by maximum-likelihood and Bayesian methods, showed a geographic clustering of LAIV strains from China and Myanmar, but not of XSV strains from China and Vietnam. These findings confirm that the black-bearded tomb bat is the natural reservoir of LAIV, and that more than one species of Hipposideros bats can host XSV.
Project description:Bats are newly identified reservoirs of hantaviruses (HVs) among which very divergent HVs have been discovered in recent years. However, their significance for public health remains unclear since their seroprevalence as well as antigenic relationship with human-infecting HVs have not been investigated. In the present study archived tissues of 1,419 bats of 22 species from 6 families collected in 5 south and southwest provinces in China were screened by pan-HV RT-PCR following viral metagenomic analysis. As a result nine HVs have been identified in two bat species in two provinces and phylogenetically classified into two species, Laibin virus (LAIV, ICTV approved species, 1 strain) and Xuan son virus (XSV, proposed species, 8 strains). Additionally, 709 serum samples of these bats were also analyzed by ELISA to investigate the seroprevalence and cross-reactivity between different HVs using expressed recombinant nucleocapsid proteins (rNPs) of LAIV, XSV and Seoul virus (SEOV). The cross-reactivity of some bat sera were further confirmed by western blot (WB) using three rNPs followed by fluorescent antibody virus neutralization test (FAVNT) against live SEOV. Results showed that the total HV seropositive rate of bat sera was 18.5% (131/709) with many cross reacting with two or all three rNPs and several able to neutralize SEOV. WB analysis using the three rNPs and their specific hyperimmune sera demonstrated cross-reactivity between XSV/SEOV and LAIV/XSV, but not LAIV/SEOV, indicating that XSV is antigenically closer to human-infecting HVs. In addition a study of the distribution of the viruses identified an area covering the region between Chinese Guangxi and North Vietnam, in which XSV and LAIV circulate within different bat colonies with a high seroprevalence. A circulation sphere of bat-borne HVs has therefore been proposed.
Project description:Cave roosting bats represent an important component of Southeast Asian bat diversity and are vulnerable to human disturbance during critical reproductive periods (pregnancy, lactation and weaning). Because dramatic growth of cave tourism in recent decades has raised concerns about impacts on cave bats in the region, we assessed the reproductive phenology of two insectivorous species (Hipposideros larvatus sensu lato and Taphozous melanopogon) at three caves in Cambodia for 23 months in 2014-2016 and evaluated human visitation to these sites between 2007 and 2014. Despite the differing foraging strategies employed by the two taxa, the temporal consistency observed in proportions of pregnant, lactating and juvenile bats indicates that their major birth peaks coincide with the time of greatest cave visitation annually, particularly for domestic visitors and namely during the Cambodian new year in April. They also reflect rainfall patterns and correspond with the reproductive phenology of insectivorous cave bats in Vietnam. These findings were predictable because 1) insect biomass and thus food availability for insectivorous bats are optimal for ensuring survival of young following this period, and 2) the Khmer new year is the most significant month for religious ceremonies and thus domestic cave visitation nationally, due to the abundance of Buddhist shrines and temples in Cambodian caves. While the impact of visitor disturbance on bat population recruitment cannot be empirically assessed due to lack of historical data, it is nonetheless likely to have been considerable and raises a conservation concern. Further, because growing evidence suggests that insectivorous cave bats exhibit reproductive synchrony across continental Southeast Asia where countless cave shrines are heavily frequented during April in Theravada Buddhist countries (e.g., Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia and Laos), our results may have wider applicability in the region. We consequently advocate for increased emphasis on sustainable cave management practices in Cambodia and further investigations to determine whether our findings present a broader concern for cave bat conservation in Southeast Asia.
Project description:We report here the complete genome sequence of a polyomavirus found in a nasal/rectal metagenome of Hipposideros pomona (Pomona leaf-nosed bat). Interestingly, the genetic organization and phylogenetic relationships of the new virus suggest greater similarity to recently discovered fish-associated polyomaviruses rather than to polyomavirus species previously observed in bats.
Project description:Although coronaviruses are known to infect various animals by adapting to new hosts, interspecies transmission events are still poorly understood. During a surveillance study from 2005 to 2010, a novel alphacoronavirus, BatCoV HKU10, was detected in two very different bat species, Ro-BatCoV HKU10 in Leschenault's rousettes (Rousettus leschenaulti) (fruit bats in the suborder Megachiroptera) in Guangdong and Hi-BatCoV HKU10 in Pomona leaf-nosed bats (Hipposideros pomona) (insectivorous bats in the suborder Microchiroptera) in Hong Kong. Although infected bats appeared to be healthy, Pomona leaf-nosed bats carrying Hi-BatCoV HKU10 had lower body weights than uninfected bats. To investigate possible interspecies transmission between the two bat species, the complete genomes of two Ro-BatCoV HKU10 and six Hi-BatCoV HKU10 strains were sequenced. Genome and phylogenetic analyses showed that Ro-BatCoV HKU10 and Hi-BatCoV HKU10 represented a novel alphacoronavirus species, sharing highly similar genomes except in the genes encoding spike proteins, which had only 60.5% amino acid identities. Evolution of the spike protein was also rapid in Hi-BatCoV HKU10 strains from 2005 to 2006 but stabilized thereafter. Molecular-clock analysis dated the most recent common ancestor of all BatCoV HKU10 strains to 1959 (highest posterior density regions at 95% [HPDs], 1886 to 2002) and that of Hi-BatCoV HKU10 to 1986 (HPDs, 1956 to 2004). The data suggested recent interspecies transmission from Leschenault's rousettes to Pomona leaf-nosed bats in southern China. Notably, the rapid adaptive genetic change in BatCoV HKU10 spike protein by ~40% amino acid divergence after recent interspecies transmission was even greater than the ~20% amino acid divergence between spike proteins of severe acute respiratory syndrome-related Rhinolophus bat coronavirus (SARSr-CoV) in bats and civets. This study provided the first evidence for interspecies transmission of coronavirus between bats of different suborders.
Project description:Hantaviruses cause life-threatening diseases in human worldwide. Rodents, insectivores and bats are known hantaviral reservoirs, but lack of complete genomic sequences of bat-borne hantaviruses impedes phylogenetic and evolutionary comparison with those of rodents and insectivores. Here, a novel bat-borne hantavirus, Laibin virus (LBV), has been identified in a black-bearded tomb bat in China. The complete genomic sequence shows that LBV is only distantly related to all previously known bat-borne hantaviruses.
Project description:In a recent study on ixodid bat ticks from Eurasia, a high genetic difference was found between Ixodes vespertilionis from Europe and Vietnam. Accordingly, it was proposed that I. vespertilionis is a species complex, with at least one additional, hitherto undescribed species. The aim of the present study was to investigate the morphology of bat ticks from Vietnam and to assess their taxonomic status in comparison with those collected in Europe.Ixodid bat ticks (two females and two nymphs) collected from the pomona leaf-nosed bat (Hipposideros pomona) (Hipposideridae) and intermediate horseshoe bat (Rhinolophus affinis) (Rhinolophidae) in Vietnam showed major morphological differences from European isolates of I. vespertilionis, including the shape of the scutum, the enclosure and shape of porose areas, the presence of a caudo-lateral collar-like ridge ventrally on the basis capituli, polytrich coxae with short setae, and grouped (non-linear) arrangement of anterior pit sensillae in Haller's organ.In this study the female and the nymph of an ixodid bat tick species from Vietnam are described for the first time. The genetic and morphological differences between I. vespertilionis Koch, 1844 and these bat ticks from Vietnam justify the status of the latter as a distinct species, Ixodes collaris Hornok n. sp.
Project description:Bats are implicated as natural reservoirs for a wide range of zoonotic viruses including SARS and MERS coronaviruses, Ebola, Marburg, Nipah, Hendra, Rabies and other lyssaviruses. Accordingly, many One Health surveillance and viral discovery programs have focused on bats. In this report we present viral metagenomic data from bats collected in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia [KSA]. Unbiased high throughput sequencing of fecal samples from 72 bat individuals comprising four species; lesser mouse-tailed bat (Rhinopoma hardwickii), Egyptian tomb bat (Taphozous perforatus), straw-colored fruit bat (Eidolon helvum), and Egyptian fruit bat (Rousettus aegyptiacus) revealed molecular evidence of a diverse set of viral families: Picornaviridae (hepatovirus, teschovirus, parechovirus), Reoviridae (rotavirus), Polyomaviridae (polyomavirus), Papillomaviridae (papillomavirus), Astroviridae (astrovirus), Caliciviridae (sapovirus), Coronaviridae (coronavirus), Adenoviridae (adenovirus), Paramyxoviridae (paramyxovirus), and unassigned mononegavirales (chuvirus). Additionally, we discovered a bastro-like virus (Middle East Hepe-Astrovirus), with a genomic organization similar to Hepeviridae. However, since it shared homology with Hepeviridae and Astroviridae at ORF1 and in ORF2, respectively, the newly discovered Hepe-Astrovirus may represent a phylogenetic bridge between Hepeviridae and Astroviridae.
Project description:Bats in Myanmar, Gabon, and Panama have been found to harbor diverse hepadnaviruses. Here, we report a novel hepadnavirus in 4 of 20 pomona roundleaf bats from Yunnan province, China. This virus contains 3,278 nucleotides (nt) in the full circularized genome, with four predicted open frames (ORFs) reading in the same direction. Full genomic sequence comparisons and evolutionary analysis indicate that this virus is a member of a new species within the genus Orthohepadnavirus.
Project description:Neospora caninum is an intracellular protozoan that infects many domestic and wild animals. Domestic dogs and other canids function as definitive hosts, while other mammals serve as natural intermediate hosts. In the present study, the brain tissues of bats collected in Yunnan Province, Southern China were tested by N. caninum specific-nested PCR, targeting the Nc-5 gene and the internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS1) region of the ribosomal DNA to determine whether bats could be infected with N. caninum. N. caninum DNA was detected in 1.8% (4/227) of bats, i.e., 1.7% (1/60) in Rousettus leschenaultia, 1.7% (1/58) in Hipposideros pomona, 2.9% (2/69) in Rhinolophus pusillus, and none (0/40) in Myotis daubentoniid. The findings of the present study are only the first indication that bats could serve as an intermediate host, and further studies are necessary to confirm whether bats are involved in the transmission of N. caninum infections.
Project description:Increasing urbanisation has led to a greater use of artificial structures by bats as alternative roost sites. Despite the widespread presence of bats, roost availability may restrict their distribution and abundance in urban environments. There is limited quantitative information on the drivers of bat roost selection and roosting preferences, particularly in African bats. We explore the factors influencing roost selection in the Mauritian tomb bat (Taphozous mauritianus), within an urban landscape in Lilongwe city, Malawi. Eight building and five landscape features of roosts were compared with both adjacent and random control buildings throughout the city. Bat occupied buildings were situated closer to woodland (mean 709m) compared to random buildings (mean 1847m) but did not differ in any other landscape features explored. Roosts were situated on buildings with larger areas and taller walls, suggesting bats select features for predator-avoidance and acoustic perception when leaving the roost. Bats preferred buildings with exposed roof beams which may provide refuge from disturbance. Whilst roosts are situated more often on brick walls, this feature was also associated with landscape features, therefore its importance in roost selection is less clear. These results are indicative that T. mauritianus selects roosts at both the building and landscape level. The selectivity of T. mauritianus in relation to its roost sites implies that preferred roosts are a limited resource, and as such, conservation actions should focus on protecting roost sites and the woodland bats rely on.