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Detected for the first time in 2011, Schmallenberg virus (SBV) is an orthobunyavirus of the Simbu serogroup that caused a large outbreak in European ruminants. In a tight time frame, data have been obtained on SBV epidemiology and the clinical pictures associated with this new viral infection, but little information is available on the molecular biology of SBV. In this study, SBV sequence variability was characterized from the central nervous system of two stillborn lambs in a naturally infected herd. A hypervariable region (HVR) was detected in the N-terminal region of the SBV Gc glycoprotein through sequencing and analysis of the two full-length genomes representative of intra-herd SBV dissemination. In vitro growth assays coupled with full-length genome sequencing were performed on the two isolates after successive cellular passages, showing an in vitro adaptation of SBV and mutation accumulation inside the HVR in the absence of immune selective pressure.


Damien Coupeau, François Claine, Laetitia Wiggers, Nathalie Kirschvink, Benoît Muylkens. In vivo and in vitro identification of a hypervariable region in Schmallenberg virus. The Journal of general virology. 2013 Jun;94(Pt 6):1168-74

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PMID: 23364190

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