Differentiation between Cyprinid herpesvirus type-3 lineages using duplex PCR

Bigarre, L.; Baud, M.; Cabon, J.; Antychowicz, J.; Bergmann, S.M.; Engelsma, M.Y.; Pozet, F.; Reichert, M.; Castric, J.


To date, all the isolates of Cyprinid herpesvirus type-3 (CyHV3) responsible for serious outbreaks in carps Cyprinus carpio have been found to be very similar or identical on the basis of DNA sequences of a few reference genes. However, two genetic lineages (U/I and J) are distinguished by full-length genome sequencing. Two molecular markers presenting genetic variations were targeted for developing a duplex PCR assay able to distinguish CyHV3-U/I from CyHV3-J while avoiding DNA sequencing. The method was validated on a series of 42 samples of infected carps from France, The Netherlands and Poland collected from 2001 to 2008. Among these samples, both the U/I and J genotypes were identified, but also a third genotype representing a genetic intermediate between U/I and J for one of the two molecular markers. A classification of CyHV3 genotypes, based on the alleles of the two molecular markers, is proposed. The assay is easy to perform and provides a genotype information with samples moderately or highly concentrated. This tool should improve our knowledge regarding the present distribution and future diversification of this emerging virus.