Background: Infectious bursal disease (IBD) is a highly contagious and acute viral disease, which has caused high mortality rates in birds and considerable economic losses in different parts of the world for more than two decades and it still represents a considerable threat to poultry. The current study was designed to rigorously measure the reliability of a phylogenetic marker included into segment B. This marker can facilitate molecular epidemiology studies, incorporating this segment of the viral genome, to better explain the links between emergence, spreading and maintenance of the very virulent IBD virus (vvIBDV) strains worldwide. Methodology/Principal Findings: Sequences of the segment B gene from IBDV strains isolated from diverse geographic locations were obtained from the GenBank Database; Cuban sequences were obtained in the current work. A phylogenetic marker named B-marker was assessed by different phylogenetic principles such as saturation of substitution, phylogenetic noise and high consistency. This last parameter is based on the ability of B-marker to reconstruct the same topology as the complete segment B of the viral genome. From the results obtained from B-marker, demographic history for both main lineages of IBDV regarding segment B was performed by Bayesian skyline plot analysis. Phylogenetic analysis for both segments of IBDV genome was also performed, revealing the presence of a natural reassortant strain with segment A from vvIBDV strains and segment B from non-vvIBDV strains within Cuban IBDV population. Conclusions/Significance: This study contributes to a better understanding of the emergence of vvIBDV strains, describing molecular epidemiology of IBDV using the state-of-the-art methodology concerning phylogenetic reconstruction. This study also revealed the presence of a novel natural reassorted strain as possible manifest of change in the genetic structure and stability of the vvIBDV strains. Therefore, it highlights the need to obtain information about both genome segments of IBDV for molecular epidemiology studies.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)