Rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus 2 (RHDV2) is a newly emerging Lagovirus belonging to the family Caliciviridae. After its first discovery in 2010 in France, this highly pathogenic virus rapidly spread to neighboring countries and has become the dominant strain, replacing the classical RHDV1 strains. RHDV2 was first reported in North America in 2016 in Mont-Joli, Quebec, Canada and it was reported again in 2018 and 2019 on Vancouver, Island and the southeast mainland of British Columbia (BC). The whole genome sequence of the RHDV2 Quebec isolate resembled the RHDV-N11 isolate from Navarra, Spain identified in 2011 with 97% identity. The epidemiological investigation involved three hobby farms and one personal residence. In December and February 2018, high mortality was reported in first a private feral rabbit refuge and then, a large colony of feral rabbits on the Vancouver Island University Campus, Nanaimo, BC. The virus responsible showed only 93% identity to the Quebec RHDV2 isolate at the nucleotide level. Additional cases of RHDV2 on Vancouver Island and on the BC mainland affecting feral, captive domestic and commercial rabbits were reported subsequently. Vaccination was recommended to control the outbreak and an inactivated bivalent vaccine was made available to the private veterinary practices. In June 2019 an isolated RHDV2 outbreak was reported in an apartment building in Vancouver, BC. This virus showed only 97% identity to the RHDV2 isolate responsible for the BC outbreak in 2018 at the nucleotide level suggesting that it was an independent incursion. In October 2020, there are reports of partial recovery of the feral population in Nanaimo and to date there are no confirmed deaths of native rabbit species in BC.
Susceptibility of turkeys, chickens and chicken embryos to SARS-CoV-2 virus was evaluated by experiment inoculation. Turkeys and chickens were inoculated using a combination of intranasal, oral and ocular routes. Both turkeys and chickens did not develop clinical disease or antibodies to the virus following inoculation. Viral RNA was not detected in oral and cloacal swabs and in tissues using quantitative real-time RT-PCR. In addition, chicken embryos were inoculated using the yolk sac, intravenous, chorioallantoic membrane and allantoic cavity routes did not support replication of the virus. SARS-COV-2 virus does not affect both turkeys and chickens in the current genetic state and does not pose any potential risk to establish in both species of domestic poultry.
African swine fever (ASF) continues to cause outbreaks throughout regions of Africa, Europe and Asia. The disease can cause severe morbidity and mortality resulting in serious economic losses. Since there is no vaccine available to control ASF, early detection is critical to contain and control the disease. The aim of this study was to develop a novel real-time PCR assay based on highly conserved ASFV gene E183L (p54). The limit of detection of the assay, VNUA-54 real-time PCR, was 2.63 copies/reaction and 2 Log10 HAD50/ml. The VNUA-54 real-time PCR was able to detect fifteen different ASFV reference strains representing p72 genotypes I, II and V. The assay was specific and did not amplify other swine viruses including CSF, FMD, PRRS, and PED. The diagnostic sensitivity of the real-time PCR assay was evaluated using 187 field clinical specimens collected from swine farms located in different provinces in Vietnam. The VNUA-54 real-time PCR assay is an additional tool for ASF diagnostics and can be used in combination with other p72 based ASFV real-time PCR assays as a rapid confirmatory assay.