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The reticuloendotheliosis virus (REV) group of retroviruses infects a wide range of avian species, including chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese, quail, and prairie chickens. The infection can result in immunosuppression, runting syndrome, high mortality, acute reticular cell neoplasia, or T- and/or B-cell lymphoma. One PCR positive chicken spleen sample obtained in a previous study in addition to one Marek's disease and three fowl pox (FP) vaccine samples were investigated in this study. A PCR assay was performed to detect the presence of REV provirus DNA in these samples. The results indicated the contamination of fowl pox virus and Marek's disease vaccines with REV. In addition, detection of integration of REV inside the genome of fowl pox vaccine was confirmed using primers corresponding to the FPV DNA regions flanking the REV integration site. Alignments of two sequences, one from the spleen tissue and the other from contaminated FP vaccine with REV, with other REV (env) gene sequences obtained from GenBank indicated their high similarity. Furthermore, phylogenetic analysis indicated that the partial part of (env) gene of our two isolates was closely related to variants from India, USA, Taiwan, and China. These results confirmed the contamination of commercial fowl pox and Marek's disease vaccines used in Sudan with REV. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the partial part of (env) gene sequences from Sudan was closely related to variants from India, USA, Taiwan, and China.


Shima H Alfaki, Mohammed O Hussien, Nussieba A Osman, Khalid A Enan, Abdel Rahim M El Hussein. First report on molecular characterization and phylogenetic analysis of Reticuloendotheliosis virus in Sudan. Tropical animal health and production. 2020 Jul;52(4):2073-2078

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PMID: 32040658

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