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Sci Rep. 2016 Feb 29;6:22356. doi: 10.1038/srep22356.

Highly divergent dengue virus type 1 genotype sets a new distance record.

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Public Health Virology Laboratory, Forensic and Scientific Services, Coopers Plains, Queensland, Australia.


Dengue viruses (DENVs) are the leading cause of mosquito-borne viral disease of humans. They exist in both endemic and sylvatic ecotypes. In 2014, a viremic patient who had recently visited the rainforests of Brunei returned to Australia displaying symptoms consistent with DENV infection. A unique DENV strain was subsequently isolated from the patient, which we propose belongs to a new genotype within DENV serotype 1 (DENV-1). Bayesian evolutionary phylogenetic analysis suggests that the putative sylvatic DENV-1 Brunei 2014 (Brun2014) is the most divergent DENV-1 yet recorded and increases the time to the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) for DENV-1 from ≈120 years to ≈315 years. DENV-1 classification of the Brun2014 strain was further supported by monoclonal antibody serotyping data. Phenotypic characterization demonstrated that Brun2014 replication rates in mosquito cells and infection rates in Aedes aegypti mosquitoes were not significantly different from an epidemic DENV-1 strain. Given its ability to cause human illness and infect Ae. aegypti, potential urban spillover and clinical disease from further Brun2014 transmission cannot be discounted.

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