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Letter to the editor in response to ‘Molecular detection of rabies virus strain with N-gene that clustered with China lineage 2 co-circulating with Africa lineages in Monrovia, Liberia: first reported case in Africa’

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 December 2019


Lifeng Zhao
Affiliation:
College of Animal Veterinary Medicine, Jilin Agricultural Science and Technology University, Jilin132101, China
Teng Chen
Affiliation:
Key Laboratory of Jilin Province for Zoonoses Prevention and Control, Laboratory of Epidemiology, Institute of Military Veterinary Medicine, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Changchun130122, China
Faming Miao
Affiliation:
Key Laboratory of Jilin Province for Zoonoses Prevention and Control, Laboratory of Epidemiology, Institute of Military Veterinary Medicine, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Changchun130122, China
Junfeng Li
Affiliation:
Jilin Agricultural University, Changchun130118, China
Ying Wang
Affiliation:
Key Laboratory of Jilin Province for Zoonoses Prevention and Control, Laboratory of Epidemiology, Institute of Military Veterinary Medicine, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Changchun130122, China
Haijun Du
Affiliation:
Changchun Sci-Tech University, Changchun130600, China
Jinghui Zhao
Affiliation:
Key Laboratory of Jilin Province for Zoonoses Prevention and Control, Laboratory of Epidemiology, Institute of Military Veterinary Medicine, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Changchun130122, China Changchun Sci-Tech University, Changchun130600, China
Corresponding

Abstract

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Letter to the Editor
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This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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Copyright © The Author(s) 2019

To the Editor

With great interest, we read the article by Olarinmoye et al. titled ‘Molecular detection of rabies virus strain with N-gene that clustered with China lineage 2 co-circulating with Africa lineages in Monrovia, Liberia: first reported case in Africa’ [Reference Olarinmoye1]. Two technical issues should be considered.

First, the full-length of the nucleoprotein (N) and the glycoprotein (G) gene should get sequenced to perform sequence analysis on the proteins. The replacement of the amino acid in comparison with other rabies viruses should be further investigated.

Second, the result of phylogenetic analysis, ‘the rabies virus (RABV) strain (MF765758) detected clustered with China lineage 2 RABVs of dogs (99% homology to KU963489 and DQ666322)’, is not comprehensive and need further analysis. Based on the partial N gene sequence (MF765758), we Blast it in the NCBI GenBank (https://blast.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/Blast.cgi). The partial of 15 nucleoprotein (N, 554-nt) genes retrieved from the NCBI GenBank database. Multiple alignments of sequences were performed using CLUSTAL X 2.1 [Reference Larkin2], and the aligned sequences were used to infer the phylogenetic tree by maximum likelihood (ML) methods using MEGA X [Reference Kumar3]. Apart from the two RABV strains of China lineage 2 (KU963489 and DQ666322), the France RABV strain, CVS (GU992321), the India RABV strains, RAB5 and RAB7 (KF535200 and KF535201), had very close resemblance (99% homology) with Monrovia RABV sequence MH765758. The phylogenetic analysis revealed them to be the same lineage (Fig. 1). China RABV strains KU963489 (or SN2-62-CanineCHINA2005) and DQ666322 (or Jiangsu_Yc63) were not pandemic strains in China [Reference Zhao4]. The phylogenetic analysis would be more comprehensive and accurate if RABV strains from India and France were added.

Fig. 1. Maximum likelihood phylogenetic tree on the partial N gene of rabies viruses. This analysis involved 15 nucleotide sequences. Evolutionary analyses were conducted in MEGA X.

It is worth noting that the relationship between Liberia strain (MH765758), India strains (KF535200 and KF535201), China strains (KU963489, DQ666322 and DQ875050) and France RABV strains (GU992321 and GQ918139) should be further investigated.

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant numbers 31472176, 31802202) and the National Key Research and Development Program of China (grant number 2016YFD0500401).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.


Footnotes

*

These authors contributed equally to this paper.


References

1.Olarinmoye, AO et al. (2019) Molecular detection of rabies virus strain with N-gene that clustered with China lineage 2 co-circulating with Africa lineages in Monrovia, Liberia: first reported case in Africa. Epidemiology and Infection 147, e85, 1–12.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
2.Larkin, MA et al. (2007) Clustal W and Clustal X version 2.0. Bioinformatics (Oxford, England) 23, 29472948.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
3.Kumar, S et al. (2018) MEGA X: Molecular Evolutionary Genetics Analysis across computing platforms. Molecular Biology and Evolution 35, 15471549.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
4.Zhao, JH et al. (2018) Ferret badger rabies in Zhejiang, Jiangxi and Taiwan, China. Archives of Virology 164, 579584.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed

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Letter to the editor in response to ‘Molecular detection of rabies virus strain with N-gene that clustered with China lineage 2 co-circulating with Africa lineages in Monrovia, Liberia: first reported case in Africa’
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