Multilocus sequence typing of Ornithobacterium rhinotracheale isolated from pigeons and birds of prey revealed new insights into its population structure.
ABSTRACT: The sudden emergence of Ornithobacterium rhinotracheale (ORT) in commercially raised poultry species and its presence in non-galliform birds raise important epidemiological issues about the role of interspecies transmission. In the present study, 21 ORT strains isolated from pigeons and from birds of prey were analyzed using the recently established multilocus sequence typing (MLST) scheme. Results were compared to MLST sequence data available from ORT strains isolated mainly from turkeys and chickens, but also single strains from pheasant, guineafowl and rook. The pigeon-derived ORT strains (n=11) were closely related amongst themselves representing their own cluster distant from ORT strains of non-columbiform avian hosts. ORT strains isolated from birds of prey (n=10) revealed a higher genetic heterogeneity that corresponded well to their host family relationships but grouped within the two mainly poultry-based clusters. None of these strains had a sequence type identical to strains investigated previously. However, three strains isolated from common kestrels and a single strain from a turkey vulture shared one or two out of seven gene loci, respectively, with strains of turkey and chicken origin. The MLST results of ORT isolated from pigeons and birds of prey likely reflect evolutionary bacterial host adaptations but might also indicate a potential for interspecies transmission. Definite conclusions should be drawn carefully as so far a few strains from non-galliform birds were analyzed by MLST. By extending the number of ORT isolates and the range of potential avian hosts, the MLST database can provide a valuable resource in understanding transmission dynamics.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Ornithobacterium (O.) rhinotracheale is an emerging bacterial pathogen in poultry and not fully understood to date. Because of its importance particularly for the global turkey meat industry, reliable diagnostic and characterization methods are needed for early treatment and in future for better vaccine production. The host range of birds infected by O. rhinotracheale or carrying the bacterium in their respiratory tract has constantly increased raising important epidemiological and taxonomic questions for a better understanding of its diversity, ecology and transmission cycles. The purpose of this study was to introduce partial rpoB gene sequencing for O. rhinotracheale into routine diagnostics to differentiate strains isolated from poultry and more diverse avian hosts (i.e., birds of prey, corvids and pigeons) and to compare phylogenetic relationships with results from 16S rRNA gene analysis and multilocus sequence typing (MLST). RESULTS:Partial 16S rRNA gene analysis revealed a high level of homogeneity among the 65 investigated O. rhinotracheale sequences with similarity values ranging from 98.6 to 100% between sequences from non-galliform and poultry species. The corresponding rpoB gene sequences were heterogeneous and ranged in their similarity values from 85.1 to 100%. The structure of the rpoB tree was in strong correlation with previous MLST results revealing three main clusters A (poultry and birds of prey), B (poultry, birds of prey and corvids) and C (pigeons), which were clearly separated from each other. CONCLUSIONS:By using partial sequences from a single gene, the rpoB gene analysis is in good agreement with MLST results with a slight decrease in resolution to distinguish more similar strains. The present results provide strong evidence that traditional phenotypic and genetic methods may not properly represent the heterogeneous group of bacteria classified as O. rhinotracheale. From housekeeping gene analyses, it is very likely that the genus Ornithobacterium includes additional species and partial rpoB gene sequencing can be recommended as fast, cost-effective and readily available method to identify strains and differentiate between O. rhinotracheale and Ornithobacterium-like bacteria.
Project description:Ornithobacterium rhinotracheale (ORT) is an economically important bacterial pathogen of turkeys and chickens worldwide. Since its first detection, a variety of typing methods have been used to gain basic knowledge about the bacterial population structure, an issue that still needs to be addressed. Serological characterization revealed at least 18 different serotypes (A-R) with ORT of serotype A to be predominate among poultry. This study aimed to establish a multilocus sequence typing (MLST) scheme for ORT that could easily be used by other laboratories and allows for worldwide comparison of sequence data. For this purpose, 87 ORT strains from different poultry hosts, geographical origins, years of isolation and serotypes were included in the analysis to identify correlations. Fourteen different sequence types (ST) were found. The most common ST1 was identified in 40 ORT strains from turkeys and chickens on 4 continents and in 3 different European countries. Together with ST9, both STs represented over three quarters (77%) of ORT strains used in the MLST analysis and included strains of frequently cross-reacting ORT serotypes A, E and I. Nine STs were only represented by one ORT strain and might indicate possible avian host, disease or serotype-specific relationships. In contrast, discrepancies between serotype and phylogenetic relatedness were clearly demonstrated by ORT strains that belonged to identical serotypes but differed in their ST. The overall identified low genetic diversity among strains isolated from turkeys and chickens independent of host and geographical origins suggests that ORT has only recently been introduced into domestic poultry and dispersed worldwide.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The identity of herpesviruses isolated in Europe from domestic pigeons (Columbid herpesvirus-1 - CoHV-1) as well as falcons and owls remains unknown. All these herpesviruses are antigenically and genetically related. The falcons and owls are thought to have become infected during the ingestion of pigeon meat thus suggesting the virus's capacity to infect a wide range of hosts. The aim of the conducted study was to detect the occurrence of CoHV-1 and estimating the similarities and differences in the DNA-dependent DNA polymerase gene of herpesviruses isolated from domestic pigeons, birds of prey and non-raptorial free-ranging birds in Poland. RESULTS: The study has shown the presence of CoHV-1 in 20.4% (18/88) in the examined birds. In case of one CoHV-1, infected Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus), neurological signs were observed. Nucleotide sequencing of the DNA-dependent DNA polymerase gene, showed a high similarity among Polish strains (100%), independently from the species of the affected birds. Only one compared CoHV-1 strain - KP 21/23 originating from Germany showed a slightly lower similarity at a level of 99.1%. Further analysis has shown the identity of DNA-dependent DNA polymerase of CoHV-1 strains and other herpesviruses present in poultry as well as other birds ranged from 35.4 to 44.9%. Interestingly CoHV-1 infection was also confirmed for the first time in four non-raptorial birds. CONCLUSIONS: The current study has shown a high similarity of CoHV-1 strains and the possible transmission of herpesviruses between domestic rock pigeons and free-ranging birds including raptors and non-raptorial birds. Further studies focused on cloning and the analysis of the whole CoHV-1 genome which is needed to explain the role of the observed similarities and differences between field strains of columbid herpesviruses.
Project description:The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome showed once again that coronaviruses (CoVs) in animals are potential source for epidemics in humans. To explore the diversity of deltacoronaviruses in animals in the Middle East, we tested fecal samples from 1,356 mammals and birds in Dubai, The United Arab Emirates. Four novel deltacoronaviruses were detected from eight birds of four species by reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR): FalCoV UAE-HKU27 from a falcon, HouCoV UAE-HKU28 from a houbara bustard, PiCoV UAE-HKU29 from a pigeon, and QuaCoV UAE-HKU30 from five quails. Complete genome sequencing showed that FalCoV UAE-HKU27, HouCoV UAE-HKU28, and PiCoV UAE-HKU29 belong to the same CoV species, suggesting recent interspecies transmission between falcons and their prey, houbara bustards and pigeons, possibly along the food chain. Western blotting detected specific anti-FalCoV UAE-HKU27 antibodies in 33 (75%) of 44 falcon serum samples, supporting genuine infection in falcons after virus acquisition. QuaCoV UAE-HKU30 belongs to the same CoV species as porcine coronavirus HKU15 (PorCoV HKU15) and sparrow coronavirus HKU17 (SpCoV HKU17), discovered previously from swine and tree sparrows, respectively, supporting avian-to-swine transmission. Recombination involving the spike protein is common among deltacoronaviruses, which may facilitate cross-species transmission. FalCoV UAE-HKU27, HouCoV UAE-HKU28, and PiCoV UAE-HKU29 originated from recombination between white-eye coronavirus HKU16 (WECoV HKU16) and magpie robin coronavirus HKU18 (MRCoV HKU18), QuaCoV UAE-HKU30 from recombination between PorCoV HKU15/SpCoV HKU17 and munia coronavirus HKU13 (MunCoV HKU13), and PorCoV HKU15 from recombination between SpCoV HKU17 and bulbul coronavirus HKU11 (BuCoV HKU11). Birds in the Middle East are hosts for diverse deltacoronaviruses with potential for interspecies transmission.IMPORTANCE During an attempt to explore the diversity of deltacoronaviruses among mammals and birds in Dubai, four novel deltacoronaviruses were detected in fecal samples from eight birds of four different species: FalCoV UAE-HKU27 from a falcon, HouCoV UAE-HKU28 from a houbara bustard, PiCoV UAE-HKU29 from a pigeon, and QuaCoV UAE-HKU30 from five quails. Genome analysis revealed evidence of recent interspecies transmission between falcons and their prey, houbara bustards and pigeons, possibly along the food chain, as well as avian-to-swine transmission. Recombination, which is known to occur frequently in some coronaviruses, was also common among these deltacoronaviruses and occurred predominantly at the spike region. Such recombination, involving the receptor binding protein, may contribute to the emergence of new viruses capable of infecting new hosts. Birds in the Middle East are hosts for diverse deltacoronaviruses with potential for interspecies transmission.
Project description:In late summer 2010 a mosquito born flavivirus not previously reported in Europe called Bagaza virus (BAGV) caused high mortality in red-legged partridges (Alectoris rufa) and ring-necked pheasants (Phasianus colchicus). We studied clinical findings, lesions and viral antigen distribution in naturally BAGV infected game birds in order to understand the apparently higher impact on red-legged partridges. The disease induced neurologic signs in the two galliform species and, to a lesser extent, in common wood pigeons (Columba palumbus). In red-legged partridges infection by BAGV caused severe haemosiderosis in the liver and spleen that was absent in pheasants and less evident in common wood pigeons. Also, BAGV antigen was present in vascular endothelium in multiple organs in red-legged partridges, and in the spleen in common wood pigeons, while in ring-necked pheasants it was only detected in neurons and glial cells in the brain. These findings indicate tropism of BAGV for endothelial cells and a severe haemolytic process in red-legged partridges in addition to the central nervous lesions that were found in all three species.
Project description:Ornithobacterium rhinotracheale strain ORT-UMN 88 is a Gram-negative, pleomorphic, rod-shaped bacterium and an etiologic agent of pneumonia and airsacculitis in poultry. It is a member of the family Flavobacteriaceae of the phylum Bacteroidetes. O. rhinotracheale strain ORT-UMN 88 was isolated from the pneumonic lung of a turkey in 1995. It was the isolate first used to experimentally reproduce disease in turkeys and has since been the focus of investigations characterizing potential virulence factors of the bacterium. The genome of O. rhinotracheale strain ORT-UMN 88 consists of a circular chromosome of 2,397,867 bp with a total of 2300 protein-coding genes, nine RNA genes, and one noncoding RNA gene. A companion paper in this issue of SIGS reports the non-contiguous finished genome sequence of an additional strain of O. rhinotracheale, isolated in 2006.
Project description:Avian paramyxovirus serotype 4 (APMV-4) is found sporadically in wild birds worldwide, and it is an economically important poultry pathogen. Despite the existence of several published strains, very little is known about the distribution, host species, and transmission of APMV-4 strains. To better understand the relationships among these factors, we conducted an APMV-4 surveillance of wild birds and domestic poultry in six provinces of China suspected of being intercontinental flyways and sites of interspecies transmission. APMV-4 surveillance was conducted in 9,160 wild birds representing seven species, and 1,461 domestic poultry in live bird markets (LMBs) from December 2013 to June 2016. The rate of APMV-4 isolation was 0.10% (11/10,621), and viruses were isolated from swan geese, bean geese, cormorants, mallards, and chickens. Sequencing and phylogenetic analyses of the 11 isolated viruses indicated that all the isolates belonging to genotype I were epidemiologically connected with wild bird-origin viruses from the Ukraine and Italy. Moreover, chicken-origin APMV-4 strains isolated from the LBMs were highly similar to wild bird-origin viruses from nearby lakes with free-living wild birds. In additional, a hemagglutination-negative APMV-4 virus was identified. These findings, together with recent APMV-4 studies, suggest potential virus interspecies transmission between wild birds and domestic poultry, and reveal possible epidemiological intercontinental connections between APMV-4 transmission by wild birds.
Project description:The behavioral strategies developed by predators to capture and kill their prey are fascinating, notably for predators that forage for prey at, or beyond, the boundaries of their ecosystem. We report here the occurrence of a beaching behavior used by an alien and large-bodied freshwater predatory fish (Silurus glanis) to capture birds on land (i.e. pigeons, Columbia livia). Among a total of 45 beaching behaviors observed and filmed, 28% were successful in bird capture. Stable isotope analyses (?(13)C and ?(15)N) of predators and their putative prey revealed a highly variable dietary contribution of land birds among individuals. Since this extreme behavior has not been reported in the native range of the species, our results suggest that some individuals in introduced predator populations may adapt their behavior to forage on novel prey in new environments, leading to behavioral and trophic specialization to actively cross the water-land interface.
Project description:Enterococci are a natural component of the intestinal flora of many organisms, including humans and birds. As opportunistic pathogens, they can cause fatal infections of the urinary tract and endocarditis in humans, whereas in poultry symptoms are joint disease, sepsis, and falls in the first week of life. The study covered 107 Enterococcus strains-56 isolated from humans and 51 from turkeys. Among the isolates investigated Enterococcus faecalis was detected in 80.36% of human and 80.39% of turkey samples. Enterococcus faecium was identified in 8.93% of human and 17.65% of turkey strains. The highest percentage of the strains was resistant to tetracycline as follows: 48 (85.71%) and 48 (94.12%) of human and turkey strains, respectively. Resistance to erythromycin occurred in 37.50% of the human and in 76.47% of turkey strains, otherwise 27.10% of all strains showed resistance to ciprofloxacin. Our study revealed that 25% of human and 15.69% of turkey strains were resistant to vancomycin. Multidrug resistance showed in 32.14% and 43.14% of human and turkey strains, respectively. The tetracycline resistance gene, tetM, was detected in 82.24% of all strains analyzed, whereas the tetO gene was found in 53.57% of human but only in 7.84% of turkey strains. The vancomycin resistance gene (vanA) was detected in seven Enterococcus strains (six isolated from turkeys and one from humans). The ermB gene (resistance to macrolide) was detected in 55.14% of all isolates (42.86% of human and 68.63% of turkey strains), whereas the ermA gene was detected in 17.65% of turkey but only in 3.57% of human isolates. All the strains had the ability to form biofilms. A stronger biofilm was formed after 24-hour incubation by strains isolated from turkeys, whereas after 48 hours of incubation all examined strains produced strong biofilm.
Project description:Galliform birds (relatives of the chicken and turkey) have attracted substantial attention due to their importance to society and value as model systems. This makes understanding the evolutionary history of Galliformes, especially the species-rich family Phasianidae, particularly interesting and important for comparative studies in this group. Previous studies have differed in their conclusions regarding galliform phylogeny. Some of these studies have suggested that specific clades within this order underwent rapid radiations, potentially leading to the observed difficulty in resolving their phylogenetic relationships. Here we presented analyses of six nuclear intron sequences and two mitochondrial regions, an amount of sequence data larger than many previous studies, and expanded taxon sampling by collecting data from 88 galliform species and four anseriform outgroups. Our results corroborated recent studies describing relationships among the major families, and provided further evidence that the traditional division of the largest family, the Phasianidae into two major groups ("pheasants" and "partridges") is not valid. Within the Phasianidae, relationships among many genera have varied among studies and there has been little consensus for the placement of many taxa. Using this large dataset, with substantial sampling within the Phasianidae, we obtained strong bootstrap support to confirm some previously hypothesized relationships and we were able to exclude others. In addition, we added the first nuclear sequence data for the partridge and quail genera Ammoperdix, Caloperdix, Excalfactoria, and Margaroperdix, placing these taxa in the galliform tree of life with confidence. Despite the novel insights obtained by combining increased sampling of taxa and loci, our results suggest that additional data collection will be necessary to solve the remaining uncertainties.