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Vet Microbiol. 2013 Mar 23;162(2-4):429-36. doi: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2012.10.027. Epub 2012 Nov 1.

Characterization of a recombinant coronavirus infectious bronchitis virus with distinct S1 subunits of spike and nucleocapsid genes and a 3' untranslated region.

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Division of Avian Infectious Diseases, State Key Laboratory of Veterinary Biotechnology, Harbin Veterinary Research Institute, the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Harbin 150001, People's Republic of China.


An infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), ck/CH/LZJ/111113, was isolated from a H120-vaccinated chicken which showed disease suspected of IBV infection. Neutralization testing showed that ck/CH/LZJ/111113 was distinct from either the Chinese predominant IBV LX4-type or Mass-type vaccine strains. Phylogenetic analysis confirmed that ck/CH/LZJ/111113 is of the 4/91 type; however, further extensive analyses of full-length genomes identified occurrence of recombination events. Therefore, ck/CH/LZJ/111113 originated from the recombination events between ck/CH/LDL/091022- and 4/91-like strains at three switch sites located upstream of the spike (S) glycoprotein gene, and the 3' ends of S1 and nuceocapsid (N) genes, respectively. The difference of serotypes and tissue tropisms in kidneys between ck/CH/LZJ/111113 and ck/CH/LDL/091022 may have been contributed by the uptake of the S1 gene by a ck/CH/LDL/091022-like virus from a 4/91-like strain. This recombination event took place at the 3' end of the N gene and the 3' untranslated region may account for differences in replication efficiency in tissues of chickens inoculated by the two viruses.

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