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RHDVRabbit Haemorrhagic Disease Virus
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In 1991, a strain of RHDV from Czechoslovakia (CAPM V-351) was imported into Australia for assessment of its suitability as a rabbit biocontrol agent; it has been used for this purpose since 1995, resulting in substantial benefits for both the economy and the environment (3-5).
RHDV strains are currently all classified as a single serotype, although phylogenetic analyses have led to the viruses being subclassified into 6 genogroups (10,11).
The strain of RHDV that already exists in New Zealand has a vaccine which is being used to protect against the new strain in other countries.
As part of ongoing opportunistic surveillance of RHDV field outbreaks, we analyzed 3 isolates from dead adult wild rabbits found in the wider Canberra region of Australia.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Barnaby Joyce, welcomed the approval of the new RHDV K5 strain, which will ensure its eventual roll out.
Since 2012, the new variant of RHDV has been detected in most rabbit farms in Spain (6), and in several wild populations distributed across Spain and Portugal (7), suggesting that it has rapidly spread throughout the Iberian Peninsula.
These subspecies are equally susceptible to RHDV (3).
RHDV is not cultivatable in cell culture; therefore, detection of virus genome, virions, and anti-RHDV antibodies and experimental infection of rabbits are required for diagnosis and virus characterization (7).
Binding capacity of 6 RHDV strains representative of virus diversity (2) was tested against human saliva samples by using a method similar to that reported for human norovirus (5).
detected in the United States, its unique pathogenic potential to rabbits among the currently described non-RHDV lagoviruses, and its genetic distinction from RHDV.
8 kb) was amplified by using primers based on USA Iowa 2000 RHDV strain (spanning nucleotide positions 5273-7065, GenBank accession no.
However, considering the heavy exposures associated with the cultivation and harvesting of RHDV in live rabbits and the known infectivity of Q fever, C.