Emergence of divergent Zaire ebola virus strains in Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2007 and 2008

Grard, G., Biek, R. , Muyembe Tamfum, J.-J., Fair, J., Wolfe, N., Formenty, P., Paweska, J. and Leroy, E. (2011) Emergence of divergent Zaire ebola virus strains in Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2007 and 2008. Journal of Infectious Diseases, 204(s3), s776-s784. (doi: 10.1093/infdis/jir364)

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Abstract

Methods. Viruses of each outbreak were isolated and the full-length genomes were characterized. Phylogenetic analysis was then undertaken to characterize the relationships with previously described viruses. Results. The 2 Luebo viruses are nearly identical but are not related to lineage A viruses known in DRC or to descendants of the lineage B viruses encountered in the Gabon-Republic of the Congo area, with which they do, however, share a common ancestor. Conclusions. Our findings strongly suggest that the Luebo 2007 outbreak did not result from viral spread from previously identified foci but from an independent viral emergence. The previously identified epidemiological link with migratory bat species known to carry Zaire ebolavirus RNA support the hypothesis of viral spillover from this widely dispersed reservoir. The high level of similarity between the Luebo2007 and Luebo2008 viruses suggests that local wildlife populations (most likely bats) became infected and allowed local viral persistence and reemergence from year to year.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This article appears in supplement: Filoviruses
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Biek, Professor Roman
Authors: Grard, G., Biek, R., Muyembe Tamfum, J.-J., Fair, J., Wolfe, N., Formenty, P., Paweska, J., and Leroy, E.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
Journal Name:Journal of Infectious Diseases
Journal Abbr.:J Infect Dis.
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:0022-1899
ISSN (Online):1537-6613

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