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Endogenous gibbon ape leukemia virus (GALV) identified in a rodent (Melomys burtoni subsp.) from Wallacea (Indonesia)

Alfano N., Michaux J., Morand S., Aplin K., Tsangaras K., Löber U., Fabre P.H., Fitriana Y., Semiadi G., Ishida Y., Helgen K.M., Roca A.L., Eiden M.V., Greenwood A.. 2016. Journal of Virology, 90 (18) : p. 8169-8180.

Gibbon ape leukemia virus (GALV) and koala retrovirus (KoRV) most likely originated from a cross-species transmission of an ancestral retrovirus into koalas and gibbons via one or more intermediate as yet unknown hosts. A highly similar virus to GALV has been identified in an Australian native rodent (Melomys burtoni) after extensive screening of Australian wildlife. GALV-like viruses have also been discovered in several Southeast Asian species although screening has not been extensive and viruses discovered to date are only distantly related to GALV. We therefore screened 26 Southeast Asian rodent species for KoRV- and GALV-like sequences, using hybridization capture and high-throughput sequencing, in the attempt to identify potential GALV and KoRV hosts. Only the individuals belonging to a newly discovered subspecies of Melomys burtoni from Indonesia were positive yielding an endogenous provirus very closely related to a strain of GALV. The sequence of the critical receptor domain for GALV infection in the Indonesian M. burtoni subsp. was consistent with the susceptibility of the species to GALV infection. The second record of a GALV in M. burtoni provides further evidence that M. burtoni, and potentially other lineages within the widespread subfamily Murinae, may play a role in the spread of GALV-like viruses. The discovery of a GALV in the most western part of the Australo-Papuan distribution of M. burtoni, specifically in a transitional zone between Asia and Australia (Wallacea), may be relevant to the cross-species transmission to gibbons in Southeast Asia and broadens the known distribution of GALVs in wild rodents. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés : indonésie

Thématique : Maladies des animaux

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