Document Type : Original Article
Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute, Agricultural Research, Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Mashhad, Iran
Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman, Kerman, Iran
Newcastle disease virus (NDV) sub-genotype VII.1.1 is the most common circulating NDV in Iran. In this study, a velogenic NDV isolate was plaque purified and then characterized according to Office International des Epizooties (OIE) standard protocols. The biological properties of the purified isolate named CH/RT40/IR/2011 were characterized using sequencing and phylogenetic analysis, measurement of pathogenicity indexes and challenge studies. The isolate was plaque purified on chicken embryo fibroblast cells for three rounds and then characterized using molecular and biological approaches. Phylogenetic and evolutionary distance analysis of fusion and hemagglutinin-neuraminidase genes classified the virus in sub-genotype VII.1.1. No mutation was observed in the glycosylation and neutralizing epitope sites of the fusion and hemagglutinin-neuraminidase proteins compared to other reported Iranian NDV VII.1.1 isolates. The presence of the 112RRQKRF117 motif in the fusion protein cleavage site together with mean death time, intracerebral pathogenicity index and intravenous pathogenicity index of 57 hr, 1.80 and 2.50 respectively, revealed that the RT40 isolate was a velogenic NDV. In the challenge study, all chickens were inoculated via eye drop, and intranasal route with RT40 isolate died within a week. While all chickens in the vaccinated and challenged group survived and showed no clinical signs. In conclusion, according to genetic analysis, pathotyping and challenge study, the RT40 isolate was similar to virulent NDVs in Iran and was a suitable candidate for a national standard challenge strain, vaccine trials and vaccine production in commercial levers.
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