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Virology. 1996 Jun 1;220(1):223-6.

Genetic identification of a new hantavirus causing severe pulmonary syndrome in Argentina.

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Department de Virus, Instituto Nacional de Microbiología, Carios G. Malbran, Buenos Aires, Argentina.


A fatal case of serologically confirmed hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) was recently reported in southwestern Argentina. Nucleotide sequence analysis of PCR fragments from conserved regions of the S and M genomic segments of the virus, amplified from RNA extracted from autopsy lung and liver tissues, showed the virus (referred as Andes virus) to be novel. Comparisons between Andes virus genome sequences with the corresponding sequences of the more closely related hantaviruses revealed differences at the amino acid level from 13.6 to 23.9% for G2 protein regions and from 8.5 to 12.5% for the amino terminal region of the nucleocapsid protein. Phylogenetic analysis using the maximum parsimony and maximum likelihood methods showed that Andes virus maps within the clade containing the HPS-associated viruses from North America. Within this group, Andes virus represents a unique lineage. This is, to our knowledge, the first report on the genetic characterization of a hantavirus from South America.

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