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J Gen Virol. 2013 Sep;94(Pt 9):2029-35. doi: 10.1099/vir.0.054676-0. Epub 2013 Jun 26.

Genetic characterization of a novel picornavirus distantly related to the marine mammal-infecting aquamaviruses in a long-distance migrant bird species, European roller (Coracias garrulus).

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Regional Laboratory of Virology, National Reference Laboratory of Gastroenteric Viruses, ÁNTSZ Regional Institute of State Public Health Service, Pécs, Hungary.


Despite the continuously growing number of known avian picornaviruses (family Picornaviridae), knowledge of their genetic diversity in wild birds, especially in long-distance migrant species is very limited. In this study, we report the presence of a novel picornavirus identified from one of 18 analysed faecal samples of an Afro-Palearctic migrant bird, the European roller (Coracias garrulus L., 1758), which is distantly related to the marine-mammal-infecting seal aquamavirus A1 (genus Aquamavirus). The phylogenetic analyses and the low sequence identity (P1 26.3 %, P2 25.8 % and P3 28.4 %) suggest that this picornavirus could be the founding member of a novel picornavirus genus that we have provisionally named 'Kunsagivirus', with 'Greplavirus A' (strain roller/SZAL6-KuV/2011/HUN, GenBank accession no. KC935379) as the candidate type species.

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