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Volume 25, Number 5—May 2019

Novel Picornavirus in Lambs with Severe Encephalomyelitis

Leonie F. Forth, Sandra F.E. Scholes, Patricia A. Pesavento, Kenneth Jackson, Adrienne Mackintosh, Amanda Carson, Fiona Howie, Kore Schlottau, Kerstin Wernike, Anne Pohlmann, Dirk Höper, and Martin BeerComments to Author 
Author affiliations: Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Greifswald-Insel Riems, Germany (L.F. Forth, K. Schlottau, K. Wernike, A. Pohlmann, D. Höper, M. Beer); SRUC Veterinary Services, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (S.F.E. Scholes, F. Howie); University of California–Davis, Davis, California, USA (P.A. Pesavento, K. Jackson); APHA Veterinary Investigation Centre, Carmarthen, Wales, UK (A. Mackintosh); APHA Veterinary Investigation Centre, Penrith, UK (A. Carson)

Main Article

Table 2

Clinical history of lambs in England with nonsuppurative encephalomyelitis and results of testing of archived samples for presence of OvPV in spinal cord and brain*

Year Signalment (case reference) Case information RT-PCR† OvPV reads, no. (%)‡ Reference coverage§ Nucl. seq. identity§
3-week-old mule lamb (1454/98)
Clinical signs of head tilt, rolling eyes and star gazing, and rapid onset of ataxia, recumbency, and paddling; no response to antimicrobial drugs, multivitamins including B1. Negative for Louping ill virus antibodies in cerebrospinal fluid and serum.
570 (0.003)
2–4-week-old milking breed lamb (960/00)
One of ≈12 lambs fed artificial colostrum (snatched at birth to prevent transmission of maedi-visna virus) that developed neurologic signs at ≈2 weeks of age, first weak in forelimbs, then hindlimbs, and by the second day, tremor and incoordination.
Cq 35
1061 (0.01)
Two 7–8-day-old triplet lambs (E1028/04 and E1029/04)
Triplets fed proprietary powdered colostrum because the ewe had insufficient milk. Signs of fine tremor progressing to recumbency; the third triplet developed similar neurologic signs at 3 weeks of age (not submitted for investigation).
Cq 32; positive
747,777 (3.02); 238,627 (1.11)
Full; full
95%; 95%
2-week-old Texel X Swaledale (S313-04-08-1)
Neurologic signs not otherwise specified.
Cq 36
242 (0.0006)
1-week-old mule X female lamb (S78-04-10-1)
Approximately 25 lambs have been similarly affected. Portions of fixed juvenile ovine brain were submitted from field postmortem examination with history of suspected neurologic disease before euthanasia.
Cq 24
18,572 (0.07)
2014 Breed and age not known (S247-04-14) Preweaned lamb with neurologic signs. Field postmortem samples submitted with clinical history of “suspect swayback,” thus likely clinical signs of ataxia and paresis. Cq 34 NP NP NP

*Cq, PCR quantification cycle; NP, not performed; nucl. seq., nucleotide sequence; OvPV, ovine picornavirus; RT-PCR, reverse transcription PCR; qRT-PCR, quantitative RT-PCR.
†RT-PCR was performed as prescreening for sample selection for high-throughput sequencing. Where feasible, Cq values of the qRT-PCR are indicated; positive means positive in semi-nested PCR.
‡Number (proportion) of OvPV reads in the complete high-throughput sequencing dataset.
§Genome coverage and nucleotide sequence identity of the full genome or several contigs in relation to the OvPV reference genome strain OvPV/Wales/2017/S014175 (International Nucleotide Sequence Data Collaboration accession no. LR216008).

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Page created: April 18, 2019
Page updated: April 18, 2019
Page reviewed: April 18, 2019
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