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Phylogenetic, molecular and drug-sensitivity analysis of HA and NA genes of human H3N2 influenza A viruses in Guangdong, China, 2007–2011

  • P. HUANG (a1) (a2), L.-J. LIANG (a1) (a2), N.-M. HOU (a1), X. ZHANG (a1), W.-Z. SU (a1), S.-Y. YU (a3), Y.-H. ZHANG (a1), J. WU (a1) and W. Q. CHEN (a2)...

Summary

Annual H3N2 subtype influenza outbreaks in Guangdong, China are a severe public health issue and require ongoing monitoring of emerging viral variants. The variation and evolution of haemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA) genes of influenza isolates from Guangdong during 2007–2011 and others from GenBank were analysed using Lasergene 7.1 and MEGA 5.05, and serological analysis of antigens was determined by haemagglutination inhibition (HI). Susceptibility to antiviral drugs was correlated with genetic mutations. Phylogenetic analysis and alignment of HA and NA genes were performed on 18 Guangdong isolates and 26 global reference strains. The non-synonymous (dN) evolutionary rate of HA1 was 3·13 times that of HA2. Compared with the A/Perth/16/2009 vaccine HA gene, homologies of Guangdong isolates were between 98·8–99·7% and 98·0–98·4% in 2009 and 2010, respectively. Amino-acid substitutions were found in five epitopes of HA1 from Guangdong isolates between 2007 and 2011, especially in epitopes B (N160K) and D (K174R/N). The K189E/N/Q and T228A mutations in the receptor-binding site (RBS) occurred in the 2010 strains, which affected the antigenicity of HA1. The antigenicity of the epidemic H3N2 isolates in 2010 was somewhat different from that of A/Perth/16/2009. The Guangdong H3N2 isolates were determined to be oseltamivir-resistant with IC50 of 0·396±0·085 nmol/l (n=17) and zanamivir-resistant with IC50 of 0·477±0·149 nmol/l (n=18). Variations were present in epitopes B and D, two sites in the RBS and two glycosylation sites in the Guangdong H3N2 HA1 gene. The majority of the Guangdong H3N2 isolates were sensitive to oseltamivir and zanamivir. Compared to the World Health Organization 2012 vaccine strains, Guangdong H3N2 strains varied genetically and antigenically to some degree.

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      Phylogenetic, molecular and drug-sensitivity analysis of HA and NA genes of human H3N2 influenza A viruses in Guangdong, China, 2007–2011
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Corresponding author

*Author for correspondence: Dr P. Huang, Key Laboratory for Emergency Pathogen Detection, Guangdong Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 176 Xingang Road West, Guangzhou 510300, China. (Email: pphuang1@163.com)

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