#Extraordinary increase in #WNV cases and first confirmed #human #Usutu virus #infection in #Hungary, 2018 (Euro Surveill., abstract)

[Source: Eurosurveillance, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Extraordinary increase in West Nile virus cases and first confirmed human Usutu virus infection in Hungary, 2018

Anna Nagy1,2, Eszter Mezei2,3, Orsolya Nagy1,4, Tamás Bakonyi5,6, Nikolett Csonka1, Magdolna Kaposi1, Anita Koroknai1, Katalin Szomor7, Zita Rigó7, Zsuzsanna Molnár3, Ágnes Dánielisz3, Mária Takács1,4

Affiliations: 1 National Reference Laboratory for Viral Zoonoses; National Public Health Center, Budapest, Hungary; 2 These authors contributed equally to this work; 3 Department of Communicable Diseases Epidemiology and Infection Control; National Public Health Center, Budapest, Hungary; 4 Institute of Medical Microbiology, Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary; 5 Department of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, University of Veterinary Medicine, Budapest, Hungary; 6 Viral Zoonoses, Emerging and Vector-borne Infections Group, Institute of Virology, University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, Austria; 7 National Reference Laboratory for Viral Exanthematous Diseases; National Public Health Center, Budapest, Hungary

Correspondence: Anna Nagynagy.annannk.gov.hu

Citation style for this article: Nagy Anna, Mezei Eszter, Nagy Orsolya, Bakonyi Tamás, Csonka Nikolett, Kaposi Magdolna, Koroknai Anita, Szomor Katalin, Rigó Zita, Molnár Zsuzsanna, Dánielisz Ágnes, Takács Mária. Extraordinary increase in West Nile virus cases and first confirmed human Usutu virus infection in Hungary, 2018. Euro Surveill. 2019;24(28):pii=1900038. https://doi.org/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2019.24.28.1900038

Received: 07 Jan 2019;   Accepted: 02 Apr 2019

 

Abstract

Background

During the 2018 WNV transmission season, similarly to other endemic areas in Europe, a large number of human West Nile virus (WNV) infections were reported in Hungary.

Aims

We summarise the epidemiological and laboratory findings of the 2018 transmission season and expand experiences in flavivirus differential diagnostics.

Methods

Every patient with clinical suspicion of acute WNV infection was in parallel tested for WNV, tick-borne encephalitis virus and Usutu virus (USUV) by serological methods. Sera, whole blood and urine samples were also tested for the presence of viral nucleic acid.

Results

Until the end of December 2018, 215 locally acquired and 10 imported human WNV infections were notified in Hungary. All reported cases were symptomatic; most of them exhibited neurological symptoms. In a large proportion of tested individuals, whole blood was the most appropriate sample type for viral nucleic acid detection, but because whole blood samples were not always available, testing of urine samples also extended diagnostic possibilities. In addition, the first human USUV infection was confirmed in 2018 in a patient with aseptic meningitis. Serological cross-reactions with WNV in different serological assays were experienced, but subsequent molecular biological testing and sequence analysis identified Europe lineage 2 USUV infection.

Conclusion

Careful interpretation and simultaneous application of different laboratory methods are necessary to avoid misdiagnosis of human USUV cases. Expansion of the laboratory-confirmed case definition criteria for detection of viral RNA in any clinical specimens to include urine samples could increase diagnostic sensitivity.

© This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Keywords: WNV; Usutu virus; Hungary.

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Establishment of a #Cell #Culture Model of Persistent #Flaviviral #Infection: #Usutu Virus Shows Sustained Replication during Passages and Resistance to Extinction by Antiviral Nucleosides (Viruses, abstract)

[Source: US National Library of Medicine, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Viruses. 2019 Jun 17;11(6). pii: E560. doi: 10.3390/v11060560.

Establishment of a Cell Culture Model of Persistent Flaviviral Infection: Usutu Virus Shows Sustained Replication during Passages and Resistance to Extinction by Antiviral Nucleosides.

Sempere RN1,2, Arias A3.

Author information: 1 Life Science & Bioengineering Building, Technical University of Denmark, 2800 Kongens Lyngby, Denmark. rnsempere@abiopep.com. 2 Abiopep Sociedad Limitada, Parque Científico de Murcia, 30100 Murcia, Spain. rnsempere@abiopep.com. 3 Life Science & Bioengineering Building, Technical University of Denmark, 2800 Kongens Lyngby, Denmark. aaesteban2@gmail.com.

 

Abstract

Chronic viral disease constitutes a major global health problem, with several hundred million people affected and an associated elevated number of deaths. An increasing number of disorders caused by human flaviviruses are related to their capacity to establish a persistent infection. Here we show that Usutu virus (USUV), an emerging zoonotic flavivirus linked to sporadic neurologic disease in humans, can establish a persistent infection in cell culture. Two independent lineages of Vero cells surviving USUV lytic infection were cultured over 82 days (41 cell transfers) without any apparent cytopathology crisis associated. We found elevated titers in the supernatant of these cells, with modest fluctuations during passages but no overall tendency towards increased or decreased infectivity. In addition to full-length genomes, viral RNA isolated from these cells at passage 40 revealed the presence of defective genomes, containing different deletions at the 5′ end. These truncated transcripts were all predicted to encode shorter polyprotein products lacking membrane and envelope structural proteins, and most of non-structural protein 1. Treatment with different broad-range antiviral nucleosides revealed that USUV is sensitive to these compounds in the context of a persistent infection, in agreement with previous observations during lytic infections. The exposure of infected cells to prolonged treatment (10 days) with favipiravir and/or ribavirin resulted in the complete clearance of infectivity in the cellular supernatants (decrease of ~5 log10 in virus titers and RNA levels), although modest changes in intracellular viral RNA levels were recorded (<2 log10 decrease). Drug withdrawal after treatment day 10 resulted in a relapse in virus titers. These results encourage the use of persistently-infected cultures as a surrogate system in the identification of improved antivirals against flaviviral chronic disease.

KEYWORDS: antiviral therapies; chronic viral infection; defective viral genomes; emerging arboviruses; lethal mutagenesis

PMID: 31212939 DOI: 10.3390/v11060560

Keywords: Flavivirus; Usutu virus; Antivirals; Favipiravir; Ribavirin.

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First #Evidence of #Fatal #Usutu Virus Natural #Infections in an #Anatidae, the Common Scoter (Melanitta nigra) (Vector Borne Zoo Dis., abstract)

[Source: Vector Borne and Zoonotic Diseases, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

First Evidence of Fatal Usutu Virus Natural Infections in an Anatidae, the Common Scoter (Melanitta nigra)

Emna Benzarti, Mutien Garigliany, Dany Hauman, Julien Paternostre, Annick Linden, Mathieu Franssen, Michael Sarlet, Dominique Cassart, and Daniel Desmecht

Published Online: 28 May 2019 / DOI: https://doi.org/10.1089/vbz.2019.2460

 

Abstract

While fatal infections caused by the Usutu virus appeared to concern only passerines (especially the blackbird) and Strigiformes (especially the great gray owl), we report herein that the virus also naturally causes a fatal disease in an anseriforme species, the common scoter (Melanitta nigra).

Keywords: Usutu virus; Wild birds.

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#WNV #infection in individuals with pre-existing #Usutu virus #immunity, northern #Italy, 2018 (Euro Surveill., abstract)

[Source: Eurosurveillance, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

West Nile virus infection in individuals with pre-existing Usutu virus immunity, northern Italy, 2018

Alessandro Sinigaglia1, Monia Pacenti2, Thomas Martello1, Silvana Pagni1,2, Elisa Franchin1,2, Luisa Barzon1,2

Affiliations: 1 Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Padova, Padova, Italy; 2 Microbiology and Virology Unit, Padova University Hospital, Padova, Italy

Correspondence:  Luisa Barzon

Citation style for this article: Sinigaglia Alessandro, Pacenti Monia, Martello Thomas, Pagni Silvana, Franchin Elisa, Barzon Luisa. West Nile virus infection in individuals with pre-existing Usutu virus immunity, northern Italy, 2018. Euro Surveill. 2019;24(21):pii=1900261. https://doi.org/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2019.24.21.1900261

Received: 27 Apr 2019;   Accepted: 22 May 2019

 

Abstract

In 2018, there was a large West Nile virus (WNV) outbreak in northern Italy. We observed five atypical cases of WNV infection that were characterised by the presence of WNV RNA and WNV IgG at the time of diagnosis, but no IgM response during follow-up. Neutralisation assays demonstrated pre-existing Usutu virus immunity in all patients. Besides challenging diagnosis, the immunological crosstalk between the two viruses warrants further investigation on possible cross-protection or infection enhancement effects.

©  This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Keywords: WNV; Usutu virus; ADE; Italy.

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#WNV and #Usutu Virus #Infections and Challenges to #Blood #Safety in the #EU (Emerg Infect Dis., abstract)

[Source: US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Emerging Infectious Diseases Journal, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Volume 25, Number 6—June 2019 / Perspective

West Nile and Usutu Virus Infections and Challenges to Blood Safety in the European Union

Dragoslav Domanović  , Celine M. Gossner, Ryanne Lieshout-Krikke, Wolfgang Mayr, Klara Baroti-Toth, Alina Mirella Dobrota, Maria Antonia Escoval, Olaf Henseler, Christof Jungbauer, Giancarlo Liumbruno, Salvador Oyonarte, Constantina Politis, Imad Sandid, Miljana Stojić Vidović, Johanna J. Young, Inês Ushiro-Lumb, and Norbert Nowotny

Author affiliations: European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, Solna, Sweden (D. Domanović, C.M. Gossner, J.J. Young); European Blood Alliance, Amsterdam, the Netherlands (R. Lieshout-Krikke); Austrian Red Cross, Vienna, Austria (W. Mayr, C. Jungbauer); National Competent Authority for Blood, Budapest, Hungary (K. Baroti-Toth); National Competent Authority for Blood, Bucharest, Romania (A.M. Dobrota); National Competent Authority for Blood, Lisbon, Portugal (M.A. Escoval); Paul Ehrlich Institute, Langen, Germany (O. Henseler); Italian National Blood Centre, National Institute of Health, Rome, Italy (G. Liumbruno); National Competent Authority for Blood, Madrid, Spain (S. Oyonarte); Hellenic Center for Disease Control and Prevention (KEELPNO), Athens, Greece (C. Politis); National Competent Authority for Blood, Paris, France (I. Sandid); Croatian Institute for Transfusion Medicine, Zagreb, Croatia (M.S. Vidović); National Health Service Blood and Transplant (NHSBT), London, UK (I. Ushiro-Lumb); University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, Austria (N. Nowotny); Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences, Dubai, United Arab Emirates (N. Nowotny)

 

Abstract

West Nile virus (WNV) and Usutu virus (USUV) circulate in several European Union (EU) countries. The risk of transfusion-transmitted West Nile virus (TT-WNV) has been recognized, and preventive blood safety measures have been implemented. We summarized the applied interventions in the EU countries and assessed the safety of the blood supply by compiling data on WNV positivity among blood donors and on reported TT-WNV cases. The paucity of reported TT-WNV infections and the screening results suggest that blood safety interventions are effective. However, limited circulation of WNV in the EU and presumed underrecognition or underreporting of TT-WNV cases contribute to the present situation. Because of cross-reactivity between genetically related flaviviruses in the automated nucleic acid test systems, USUV-positive blood donations are found during routine WNV screening. The clinical relevance of USUV infection in humans and the risk of USUV to blood safety are unknown.

Keywords: Usutu virus; WNV; Blood safety; EU.

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Towards high quality RT #WGS during #outbreaks using #Usutu virus as example (Infect Genet Evol., abstract)

[Source: US National Library of Medicine, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Infect Genet Evol. 2019 Apr 20. pii: S1567-1348(19)30056-5. doi: 10.1016/j.meegid.2019.04.015. [Epub ahead of print]

Towards high quality real-time whole genome sequencing during outbreaks using Usutu virus as example.

Oude Munnink BB1, Kik M2, de Bruijn ND3, Kohl R1, van der Linden A1, Reusken CBEM1, Koopmans M4.

Author information: 1 ErasmusMC, Department of Viroscience, WHO Collaborating Centre for Arbovirus and Viral Hemorrhagic Fever Reference and Research, Rotterdam, the Netherlands. 2 Veterinary Pathology Centre, University of Utrecht, the Netherlands. 3 GD Animal Health, Deventer, the Netherlands. 4 ErasmusMC, Department of Viroscience, WHO Collaborating Centre for Arbovirus and Viral Hemorrhagic Fever Reference and Research, Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Electronic address: m.koopmans@erasmusmc.nl.

 

Abstract

Recently, protocols for amplicon based whole genome sequencing using Nanopore technology have been described for Ebola virus, Zika virus, yellow fever virus and West Nile virus. However, there is some debate regarding reliability of sequencing using this technology, which is important for applications beyond diagnosis such as linking lineages to outbreaks, tracking transmission pathways and pockets of circulation, or mapping specific markers. To our knowledge, no in depth analyses of the required read coverage to compensate for the error profile in Nanopore sequencing have been described. Here, we describe the validation of a protocol for whole genome sequencing of USUV using Nanopore sequencing by direct comparison to Illumina sequencing. To that point we selected brain tissue samples with high viral loads, typical for birds which died from USUV infection. We conclude that the low-cost MinION Nanopore sequencing platform can be used for characterization and tracking of Usutu virus outbreaks.

Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

KEYWORDS: Arboviruses; Nanopore; Sequencing; USUV

PMID: 31014969 DOI: 10.1016/j.meegid.2019.04.015

Keywords: Emerging diseases; Infectious Diseases; Diagnostic tests; Usutu virus.

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Expanding #Usutu virus #circulation in #Italy: detection in the Lazio region, central Italy, 2017 to 2018 (Euro Surveill., abstract)

[Source: Eurosurveillance, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Expanding Usutu virus circulation in Italy: detection in the Lazio region, central Italy, 2017 to 2018

Fabrizio Carletti1, Francesca Colavita1, Francesca Rovida2, Elena Percivalle2, Fausto Baldanti2,3, Ida Ricci4, Claudio De Liberato4, Francesca Rosone4, Francesco Messina1, Eleonora Lalle1, Licia Bordi1, Francesco Vairo5, Maria Rosaria Capobianchi1, Giuseppe Ippolito6, Giuseppina Cappiello7, Alberto Spanò7, Silvia Meschi1, Concetta Castilletti1

Affiliations: 1 Laboratory of Virology, National Institute for Infectious Diseases ‘Lazzaro Spallanzani’ IRCCS, Rome, Italy; 2 Molecular Virology Unit, Microbiology and Virology Department, Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, Pavia, Italy; 3 Department of Clinical, Surgical, Diagnostic and Pediatric Sciences, University of Pavia, Italy; 4 Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle regioni Lazio e Toscana, Rome, Italy; 5 Regional Service for Surveillance and Control of Infectious Diseases (SERESMI)-Lazio Region, National Institute for Infectious Diseases ‘Lazzaro Spallanzani’ IRCCS, Rome, Italy; 6 Scientific Direction, National Institute for Infectious Diseases ‘Lazzaro Spallanzani’ IRCCS, Rome, Italy; 7 Unit of Microbiology, Sandro Pertini Hospital, Rome, Italy

Correspondence: Silvia Meschisilvia.meschiinmi.it

Citation style for this article: Carletti Fabrizio, Colavita Francesca, Rovida Francesca, Percivalle Elena, Baldanti Fausto, Ricci Ida, De Liberato Claudio, Rosone Francesca, Messina Francesco, Lalle Eleonora, Bordi Licia, Vairo Francesco, Capobianchi Maria Rosaria, Ippolito Giuseppe, Cappiello Giuseppina, Spanò Alberto, Meschi Silvia, Castilletti Concetta. Expanding Usutu virus circulation in Italy: detection in the Lazio region, central Italy, 2017 to 2018. Euro Surveill. 2019;24(3):pii=1800649. https://doi.org/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2019.24.3.1800649

Received: 03 Dec 2018;   Accepted: 16 Jan 2019

 

Abstract

Blood donation screening for West Nile virus (WNV) was mandatory in the Lazio region in 2017 and 2018 (June-November) according to the national surveillance plan. In these years, all five donations reactive in WNV nucleic acid amplification tests harboured instead Usutu virus (USUV). Clade ‘Europe 2’ was identified in four blood donations and a 2018 mosquito pool. The cocirculation of WNV and USUV in Lazio warrants increased laboratory support and awareness of possible virus misidentification.

©  This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Keywords: Arbovirus; Usutu Virus; WNV; Italy.

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