Evolution of the Piscine orthoreovirus genome linked to emergence of heart and skeletal muscle inflammation in farmed Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar)
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionViruses. 2019, 11 (5), 1-16. 10.3390/v11050465
Heart and skeletal muscle inflammation (HSMI) in farmed Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) was first diagnosed in Norway in 1999. The disease is caused by Piscine orthoreovirus-1 (PRV-1). The virus is prevalent in farmed Atlantic salmon, but not always associated with disease. Phylogeny and sequence analyses of 31 PRV-1 genomes collected over a 30-year period from fish with or without HSMI, grouped the viral sequences into two main monophylogenetic clusters, one associated with HSMI and the other with low virulent PRV-1 isolates. A PRV-1 strain from Norway sampled in 1988, a decade before the emergence of HSMI, grouped with the low virulent HSMI cluster. The two distinct monophylogenetic clusters were particularly evident for segments S1 and M2. Only a limited number of amino acids were unique to the association with HSMI, and they all located to S1 and M2 encoded proteins. The observed co-evolution of the S1-M2 pair coincided in time with the emergence of HSMI in Norway, and may have evolved through accumulation of mutations and/or segment reassortment. Sequences of S1-M2 suggest selection of the HSMI associated pair, and that this segment pair has remained almost unchanged in Norwegian salmon aquaculture since 1997. PRV-1 strains from the North American Pacific Coast and Faroe Islands have not undergone this evolution, and are more closely related to the PRV-1 precursor strains not associated with clinical HSMI.