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African swine fever virus serodiagnosis: A general review with a focus on the analyses of African serum samples

Cubillos C., Gómez-Sebastian S., Moreno N., Nuñez M.C., Mulumba-Mfumu L.K., Quembo C.J., Heath L., Etter E., Jori F., Escribano J.M., Blanco E.. 2013. Virus Research, 173 (1) : p. 159-167.

DOI: 10.1016/j.virusres.2012.10.021

African swine fever (ASF) is an infectious disease that causes heavy mortality in domestic pigs. At present there is no vaccine against ASF, and eradication in countries where the disease is endemic is based only on competent diagnosis programs and the sacrifice of infected animals. Due to the presence of natural attenuated strains, certain infection conditions may result in reduced mortality. In these situations, the disease can be diagnosed by detection of specific antibodies. The use of classical and validated diagnosis assays, such as ELISA and Indirect Immunofluorescence or Immunoblotting, allowed the eradication of ASF in the Iberian Peninsula in the 1990s. However, given that conventional tests include the use of antigens obtained from ASF virus (ASFV)-infected cells, they have several disadvantages, such as difficulties to achieve standardization and also the risks associated with the manipulation of live virus. Such drawbacks have led to the development of alternative and more robust systems for the production of ASFV antigens for use in anti-ASFV antibody detection systems. In the present review, we provide an update on current knowledge about antigen targets for ASFV serodiagnosis, the significant progress made in recombinant antigen production, and the refinement of ASF serological diagnostic assays. Moreover, we describe the accuracy of an ELISA developed for the serodiagnosis of ASFV in Africa. This assay is based on a novel p30 recombinant protein (p30r) obtained from an Eastern African viral isolate (Morara strain), which shares 100% amino acid sequence identity with the Georgia virus isolate. That study included the analyses of 587 field sera collected from domestic pigs and warthogs in Senegal (West Africa), the Democratic Republic of Congo (Central Africa), Mozambique (South-East Africa), and South Africa. The results revealed that the novel p30r-based ELISA allows the accurate detection of antibodies against ASFV, independently of the geographical origin of the sera.

Mots-clés : peste porcine africaine; virus peste porcine africaine; immunologie; immunodiagnostic; test elisa; technique immunologique; protéine recombinante; anticorps; antigène; porcin; suidae; animal domestique; afrique orientale; sénégal; république démocratique du congo; mozambique; afrique du sud; phacochère

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