Pathogenic Pseudorabies Virus, China, 2012 - Volume 20, Number 1—January 2014 - Emerging Infectious Disease journal - CDC
Volume 20, Number 1—January 2014
Pathogenic Pseudorabies Virus, China, 2012
Xiuling Yu1, Zhi Zhou1, Dongmei Hu1, Qian Zhang1, Tao Han, Xiaoxia Li, Xiaoxue Gu, Lin Yuan, Shuo Zhang, Baoyue Wang, Ping Qu, Jinhua Liu, Xinyan Zhai, and Kegong Tian
Author affiliations: China Animal Disease Control Center, Beijing, China (X. Yu, Z. Zhou, D. Hu, Q. Zhang, T. Han, X. Li, X. Gu, L. Yuan, S. Zhang, B. Wang, P. Qu, X. Zhai, K. Tian); China Agricultural University, Beijing (D. Hu, Q. Zhang, J. Liu); National Research Center for Veterinary Medicine, Luoyang, Henan, China (K.Tian)
Pseudorabies virus (PRV), also called Aujeszky disease virus or suid herpesvirus type 1, is a member of the Alphaherpesvirinae subfamily within the family Herpesviridae. This pathogen has major economic consequences in pig husbandry (1–3). The PRV genome is a double-stranded linear DNA molecule ≈143 kb long and contains at least 72 genes (1,4). PRV can infect many kinds of mammals, including ruminants, carnivores, and rodents (2,3,5). However, pigs have been confirmed to be the primary hosts and reservoir of this virus (6–8). PRV infection is characterized by nervous system disorders and death in newborn piglets, respiratory disorders in older pigs, and reproductive failure in sows (7,8). Like other α herpesviruses, PRV infection can be a lifelong latent infection in the peripheral nervous systems of infected pigs, and these latently infected pigs can infect others under certain conditions (7–9). In this way, PRV causes devastating disease in pigs and economic losses worldwide.
Vaccination of pigs with attenuated live or inactivated vaccines is widely performed to reduce the huge economic losses caused by PRV infection (10–12). Although vaccination confers protection against disease, it does not prevent infection from a wild-type strain. Thus, both the virus in the vaccine and the super-virulent wild-type strain can establish latency within the same animal (13–15).
We report an outbreak of PRV infection that devastated the swine-producing regions of China in 2012. We systematically investigated the outbreak to identify the causative agent.