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Virus Res. 1999 Jun;61(2):145-52.

The S gene of canine coronavirus, strain UCD-1, is more closely related to the S gene of transmissible gastroenteritis virus than to that of feline infectious peritonitis virus.

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Virology Swine Research Unit, National Animal Disease Center, USDA, Agricultural Research Service, Ames, IA 50010, USA.


To gain insight into the genetic relationships among six canine coronavirus (CCV) strains, the variable region of the spike (S) protein gene was sequenced. The CCV strains were: two ATCC reference strains, the Insavc-1 vaccine strain, the National Veterinary Services Laboratories (Ames, IA) challenge strain, and two California field isolates (UCD-1 and UCD-2) from the 1970s. All six strains, downstream of the nucleocapsid (N) protein gene, had sufficient size for an ORF 7b, and thus, none were transmissible gastroenteritis virus (TGEV)-like since TGEV lacks ORF 7b. By sequence analysis of the variable domain at the 5' end of the S gene, five of the six CCV strains had a high degree of identity with feline infectious peritonitis virus (FIPV). However, one CCV field isolate (UCD-1) was different and had a high degree of identity with the 5' end of the TGEV S gene. This suggests that RNA recombination occurred at this site between antigenically related coronaviruses. The low passage field isolates, UCD-1 and UCD-2, varied in their initial infectivity for swine testicular cells suggesting that sequence differences in the variable domain of the S gene may account for biological variation among CCVs.

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