Glob Chang Biol. 2024 May;30(5):e17335. doi: 10.1111/gcb.17335.


Global climate change has altered the timing of seasonal events (i.e., phenology) for a diverse range of biota. Within and among species, however, the degree to which alterations in phenology match climate variability differ substantially. To better understand factors driving these differences, we evaluated variation in timing of nesting of eight Arctic-breeding shorebird species at 18 sites over a 23-year period. We used the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index as a proxy to determine the start of spring (SOS) growing season and quantified relationships between SOS and nest initiation dates as a measure of phenological responsiveness. Among species, we tested four life history traits (migration distance, seasonal timing of breeding, female body mass, expected female reproductive effort) as species-level predictors of responsiveness. For one species (Semipalmated Sandpiper), we also evaluated whether responsiveness varied across sites. Although no species in our study completely tracked annual variation in SOS, phenological responses were strongest for Western Sandpipers, Pectoral Sandpipers, and Red Phalaropes. Migration distance was the strongest additional predictor of responsiveness, with longer-distance migrant species generally tracking variation in SOS more closely than species that migrate shorter distances. Semipalmated Sandpipers are a widely distributed species, but adjustments in timing of nesting relative to variability in SOS did not vary across sites, suggesting that different breeding populations of this species were equally responsive to climate cues despite differing migration strategies. Our results unexpectedly show that long-distance migrants are more sensitive to local environmental conditions, which may help them to adapt to ongoing changes in climate.

PMID:38771086 | DOI:10.1111/gcb.17335

Vet Res Commun. 2024 May 21. doi: 10.1007/s11259-024-10414-z. Online ahead of print.


Pentatrichomonas hominis is a common intestinal parasitic protozoan that causes abdominal pain and diarrhea, and poses a zoonotic risk. Probiotics, known for enhancing immunity and pathogen resistance, hold promise in combating parasitic infections. This study aimed to evaluate two porcine-derived probiotics, Lactobacillus reuteri LR1 and Lactobacillus plantarum LP1, against P. hominis infections in pigs. Taxonomic identity was confirmed through 16 S rRNA gene sequencing, with L. reuteri LR1 belonging to L. reuteri species and L. plantarum LP1 belonging to L. plantarum species. Both probiotics exhibited robust in vitro growth performance. Co-culturing intestinal porcine epithelial cell line (IPEC-J2) with these probiotics significantly improved cell viability compared with the control group. Pre-incubation probiotics significantly enhanced the mRNA expression of anti-oxidative response genes in IPEC-J2 cells compared with the PHGD group, with L. reuteri LR1 and L. plantarum LP1 significantly up-regulating CuZn-SOD、CAT and Mn-SOD genes expression (p < 0.05). The anti-oxidative stress effect of L. reuteri LR1 was significantly better than that of L. plantarum LP1 (p < 0.05). Furthermore, pre-incubation with the probiotics alleviated the P. hominis-induced inflammatory response. L. reuteri LR1 and L. plantarum LP1 significantly down-regulated IL-6、IL-8 and TNF-α gene expression(p < 0.05) compared with the PHGD group. The probiotics also mitigated P. hominis-induced apoptosis. L. reuteri LR1 and L. plantarum LP1 significantly down-regulated Caspase3 and Bax gene expression (p < 0.05), significantly up-regulated Bcl-2 gene expression (p < 0.05) compared with the PHGD group. Among them, L. plantarum LP1 showed better anti-apoptotic effect. These findings highlight the probiotics for mitigating P. hominis infections in pigs. Their ability to enhance anti-oxidative responses, alleviate inflammation, and inhibit apoptosis holds promise for therapeutic applications. Simultaneously, probiotics can actively contribute to inhibiting trichomonal infections, offering a novel approach for preventing and treating diseases such as P. hominis. Further in vivo studies are required to validate these results and explore their potential in animal and human health.

PMID:38771449 | DOI:10.1007/s11259-024-10414-z

J Med Microbiol. 2024 May;73(5). doi: 10.1099/jmm.0.001828.


Infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) is a highly contagious avian Gammacoronavirus that affects mainly chickens (Gallus gallus) but can circulate in other avian species. IBV constitutes a significant threat to the poultry industry, causing reduced egg yield, growth and mortality levels that can vary in impact. The virus can be transmitted horizontally by inhalation or direct/indirect contact with infected birds or contaminated fomites, vehicles, farm personnel and litter (Figure 1). The error-prone viral polymerase and recombination mechanisms mean diverse viral population results, with multiple genotypes, serotypes, pathotypes and protectotypes. This significantly complicates control and mitigation strategies based on vigilance in biosecurity and the deployment of vaccination.

PMID:38771617 | DOI:10.1099/jmm.0.001828

Front Vet Sci. 2024 Apr 26;11:1353439. doi: 10.3389/fvets.2024.1353439. eCollection 2024.


Porcine circoviruses disease (PCVD), caused by porcine circovirus (PCVs), is an important swine disease characterized by porcine dermatitis, nephrotic syndrome and reproductive disorders in sows. However, diseases caused by PCV2, PCV3, or PCV4 are difficult to distinguish, so a simple, rapid, accurate and high-throughput diagnostic and identification method is urgently needed to differentiate these three types. In this study, specific primers and probes were designed based on the conserved region sequences of the Rep gene of PCV2, and the Cap gene of PCV3 and PCV4. A multiplex qPCR assay was developed and optimized that the limit of detection concentration could reach as low as 3.8 copies/μL, with all correlation coefficients (R2) exceeding 0.999. Furthermore, the method showed no cross-reaction with other crucial porcine viral pathogens, and both intra-repeatability and inter-reproducibility coefficients of variation were below 2%. The assay was applied to the detection of 738 pig samples collected from 2020 to 2021 in Guangdong Province, China. This revealed positive infection rates of 65.18% for PCV2, 29.27% for PCV3, and 0% for PCV4, with a PCV2/PCV3 co-infection rate of 23.17%. Subsequently, complete genome sequences of 17 PCV2 and 4 PCV3 strains were obtained from the above positive samples and pre-preserved positive circovirus samples. Nucleotide sequence analysis revealed that the 17 PCV2 strains shared 96.7-100% complete nucleotide identity, with 6 strains being PCV2b and 11 strains being PCV2d; the 4 PCV3 strains shared 98.9-99.4% complete nucleotide identity, with 2 strains being PCV3a-1 and 2 strains being PCV3b. This research provides a reliable tool for rapid PCVs identification and detection. Molecular epidemiological investigation of PCVs in pigs in Guangdong Province will help us to understand PCV2 and PCV3 epidemiological characteristics and evolutionary trends.

PMID:38737459 | PMC:PMC11085253 | DOI:10.3389/fvets.2024.1353439

Gene. 2024 May 3;920:148522. doi: 10.1016/j.gene.2024.148522. Online ahead of print.


Trichomonas gallinae, a globally distributed protozoan parasite, significantly affects the pigeon-breeding industry. T. gallinae infection mainly causes yellow ulcerative nodules on the upper respiratory tract and crop mucosa of pigeons, impeding normal breathing and feeding and ultimately causing death. Real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) is a crucial technique for gene-expression analysis in molecular biology. Reference-gene selection for normalization is critical for ensuring this technique's accuracy. However, no systematic screening or validation of T. gallinae reference genes has been reported. This study quantified the transcript levels of ten candidate reference genes in T. gallinae isolates with different genotypes and culture conditions using qPCR. Using the geNorm, NormFinder, and BestKeeper algorithms, we assessed these reference genes' stabilities and ranked them using RankAggreg analysis. The most stable reference gene was tubulin beta chain (TUBB), while the widely used reference genes TUBG and GAPDH demonstrated poor stability. Additionally, we evaluated these candidate reference genes' stabilities using the T. gallinae TgaAtg8 gene. On using TUBB as a reference gene, TgaAtg8's expression profiles in T. gallinae isolates with different genotypes remained relatively consistent under various culture conditions. Conversely, using ACTB as a reference gene distorted the data. These findings provide valuable reference-gene-selection guidance for functional gene research and gene-expression analysis in T. gallinae.

PMID:38703865 | DOI:10.1016/j.gene.2024.148522

BMC Vet Res. 2024 May 3;20(1):171. doi: 10.1186/s12917-024-03990-4.


BACKGROUND: Coccidiosis is one of the most frequently reported diseases in chickens, causing a significant economic impact on the poultry industry. However, there have been no previous studies evaluating the prevalence of this disease in broiler farms in Guangdong province. Therefore, this study aims to conduct an epidemiological investigation into the occurrence of Eimeria species and associated risk factors in intensive management conditions across four regions in Guangdong province, China. A total of 394 fecal samples were collected from 89 broiler farms in Guangdong province. The prevalence of Eimeria species infection was determined using PCR, and the occurrence of Clostridium perfringens type A was assessed using quantitative real-time PCR.

RESULTS: The results showed an overall prevalence of 98.88% (88/89) at the farm level and 87.06% (343/394) at the flock level. All seven Eimeria species were identified, with E. acervulina (72.53%; 64/89), E. tenella (68.54%; 61/89), and E. mitis (66.29%; 59/89) at the farm level, and E. acervulina (36.55%; 144/394), E. mitis (35.28%; 139/394), and E. tenella (34.01%; 134/394) at the flock level. The predominant species combination observed was a co-infection of all seven Eimeria species (6.74%; 6/89), followed by a combination of E. acervulina, E. tenella, E. mitis, E. necatrix, E. brunetti, and E. maxima (5.62%, 5/89). A combination of E. acervulina, E. tenella, E. mitis, E. necatrix, E. brunetti, and E. praecox (4.49%; 4/89) was also observed at the farm level. Furthermore, the study identified several potential risk factors associated with the prevalence of Eimeria species, including farm location, chicken age, drinking water source, control strategy, and the presence of C. perfringens type A were identified as potential risk factors associated with prevalence of Eimeria species. Univariate and multivariate analyses revealed a significant association between E. necatrix infection and both grower chickens (OR = 10.86; 95% CI: 1.92-61.36; p < 0.05) and adult chickens (OR = 24.97; 95% CI: 4.29-145.15; p < 0.001) compared to starter chickens at the farm level. Additionally, farms that used groundwater (OR = 0.27; 95% CI: 0.08-0.94; p < 0.05) were less likely to have E. maxima compared to those that used running water. At the flock level, the prevalence of E. tenella was significantly higher in the Pearl River Delta (OR = 2.48; 95% CI: 1.0-6.15; p = 0.05) compared to eastern Guangdong. Interestingly, flocks with indigenous birds were less likely to have E. brunetti (OR = 0.48; 95% CI: 0.26-0.89; p < 0.05) compared to flocks with indigenous crossbred birds. Furthermore, flocks that used anticoccidial drugs (OR = 0.09; 95% CI: 0.03-0.31; p < 0.001) or a combination of vaccines and anticoccidial drugs (OR = 0.06; 95% CI: 0.01-0.25; p < 0.001) were less likely to be positive for E. tenella compared to flocks that only used vaccines. Finally, flocks with C. perfringens type A infection were significantly more likely to have E. necatrix (OR = 3.26; 95% CI: 1.96-5.43; p < 0.001), E. tenella (OR = 2.14; 95% CI: 1.36-3.36; p < 0.001), E. brunetti (OR = 2.48; 95% CI: 1.45-4.23; p < 0.001), and E. acervulina (OR = 2.62; 95% CI: 1.69-4.06; p < 0.001) compared to flocks without C. perfringens type A.

CONCLUSIONS: This study conducted an investigation on the prevalence, distribution, and risk factors associated with Eimeria species infection in broiler chickens in Guangdong. The farm-level prevalence of Eimeria species was higher than the previous prevalence figures for other areas and countries. E. brunetti was identified at higher prevalence in Guangdong than previously survived prevalence in different regions in China. Farm location, chicken age, drinking water source, control strategy, and the presence of C. perfringens type A were considered as potential risk factors associated with prevalence of Eimeria species. It is imperative to underscore the necessity for further surveys to delve deeper into the occurrence of Eimeria species under intensive management conditions for different flock purposes.

PMID:38702696 | PMC:PMC11067301 | DOI:10.1186/s12917-024-03990-4

J Med Virol. 2024 May;96(5):e29622. doi: 10.1002/jmv.29622.


RNA capping is an essential trigger for protein translation in eukaryotic cells. Many viruses have evolved various strategies for initiating the translation of viral genes and generating progeny virions in infected cells via synthesizing cap structure or stealing the RNA cap from nascent host messenger ribonucleotide acid (mRNA). In addition to protein translation, a new understanding of the role of the RNA cap in antiviral innate immunity has advanced the field of mRNA synthesis in vitro and therapeutic applications. Recent studies on these viral RNA capping systems have revealed startlingly diverse ways and molecular machinery. A comprehensive understanding of how viruses accomplish the RNA capping in infected cells is pivotal for designing effective broad-spectrum antiviral therapies. Here we systematically review the contemporary insights into the RNA-capping mechanisms employed by viruses causing human and animal infectious diseases, while also highlighting its impact on host antiviral innate immune response. The therapeutic applications of targeting RNA capping against viral infections and the development of RNA-capping inhibitors are also summarized.

PMID:38682614 | DOI:10.1002/jmv.29622

Anaerobe. 2024 Apr 10;87:102856. doi: 10.1016/j.anaerobe.2024.102856. Online ahead of print.


Clostridium perfringens, a Gram-positive bacterium, causes intestinal diseases in humans and livestock through its toxins, related to alpha toxin (CPA), beta toxin (CPB), C. perfringens enterotoxin (CPE), epsilon toxin (ETX), Iota toxin (ITX), and necrotic enteritis B-like toxin (NetB). These toxins disrupt intestinal barrier, leading to various cell death mechanisms such as necrosis, apoptosis, and necroptosis. Additionally, non-toxin factors like adhesins and degradative enzymes contribute to virulence by enhancing colonization and survival of C. perfringens. A vicious cycle of intestinal barrier breach, misregulated cell death, and subsequent inflammation is at the heart of chronic inflammatory and infectious gastrointestinal diseases. Understanding these mechanisms is essential for developing targeted therapies against C. perfringens-associated intestinal diseases.

PMID:38609034 | DOI:10.1016/j.anaerobe.2024.102856

Front Vet Sci. 2024 Mar 19;11:1375026. doi: 10.3389/fvets.2024.1375026. eCollection 2024.


Coccidiosis is a costly intestinal disease of chickens caused by Eimeria species. This infection is associated with high mortality, reduced feed efficiency, and slowed body weight gain. The diagnosis and control of coccidiosis becomes challenging due to the fact that chickens can be infected by seven different Eimeria species and often occur mixed-species co-infections. Grasping the epidemiology of Eimeria species is crucial to estimate the efficiency of poultry management. This study aimed to explore the distribution of Eimeria species in broiler chickens in China after administering live anticoccidial vaccines. A total of 634 samples were obtained, and the survey results showed that the prevalence of Eimeria was 86.12% (546/634), and the most common species were E. acervulina (65.62%), E. necatrix (50.95%), E. mitis (50.79%), E. tenella (48.42%), and E. praecox (41.80%). Most samples indicated mixed-species infections (an average of 3.29 species per positive sample). Notably, 63.98% of samples contain 3 to 5 Eimeria species within a single fecal sample. The most prevalent combinations were E. acervulina-E. tenella (38.96%) and E. acervulina-E. necatrix (37.22%). Statistical analysis showed that flocks vaccinated with trivalent vaccines were significantly positive for E. necatrix in grower chickens (OR = 3.30, p < 0.05) compared with starter chickens, and tetravalent vaccinated flocks showed that starter chickens demonstrated a higher susceptibility to E. tenella-E. brunetti (OR = 2.03, p < 0.05) and E. acervulina-E. maxima (OR = 2.05, p < 0.05) compared with adult chickens. Geographically, in the case of tetravalent vaccine-immunized flocks, a substantial positive association was observed between E. necatrix infection rates and flocks from eastern (OR = 3.88, p < 0.001), central (OR = 2.65, p = 0.001), and southern China (OR = 3.17, p < 0.001) compared with southwestern China. This study also found a positive association between E. necatrix (OR = 1.64, p < 0.05), E. acervulina (OR = 1.59, p < 0.05), and E. praecox (OR = 1.81, p < 0.05) infection and coccidiosis occurrence compared with non-infected flocks in tetravalent vaccinated flocks. This molecular epidemiological investigation showed a high prevalence of Eimeria species in the field. The emergent species, E. brunetti and E. praecox, might be incorporated into the widely-used live vaccines in the future. These insights could be useful in refining coccidiosis control strategies in the poultry industry.

PMID:38566750 | PMC:PMC10986636 | DOI:10.3389/fvets.2024.1375026

Viruses. 2024 Mar 1;16(3):388. doi: 10.3390/v16030388.


The H274Y substitution (N2 numbering) in neuraminidase (NA) N1 confers oseltamivir resistance to A(H1N1) influenza viruses. This resistance has been associated with reduced N1 expression using transfected cells, but the effect of this substitution on the enzymatic properties and on the expression of other group-1-NA subtypes is unknown. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the antiviral resistance, enzymatic properties, and expression of wild-type (WT) and H274Y-substituted NA for each group-1-NA. To this end, viruses with WT or H274Y-substituted NA (N1pdm09 or avian N4, N5 or N8) were generated by reverse genetics, and for each reverse-genetic virus, antiviral susceptibility, NA affinity (Km), and maximum velocity (Vm) were measured. The enzymatic properties were coupled with NA quantification on concentrated reverse genetic viruses using mass spectrometry. The H274Y-NA substitution resulted in highly reduced inhibition by oseltamivir and normal inhibition by zanamivir and laninamivir. This resistance was associated with a reduced affinity for MUNANA substrate and a conserved Vm in all viruses. NA quantification was not significantly different between viruses carrying WT or H274Y-N1, N4 or N8, but was lower for viruses carrying H274Y-N5 compared to those carrying a WT-N5. In conclusion, the H274Y-NA substitution of different group-1-NAs systematically reduced their affinity for MUNANA substrate without a significant impact on NA Vm. The impact of the H274Y-NA substitution on viral NA expression was different according to the studied NA.

PMID:38543754 | PMC:PMC10975200 | DOI:10.3390/v16030388