Identification of an avian polyomavirus associated with Adélie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae)

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Little is known about viruses associated with Antarctic animals, although they are probably widespread. We recovered a novel polyomavirus from Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) faecal matter sampled in a subcolony at Cape Royds, Ross Island, Antarctica. The 4988 nt Adélie penguin polyomavirus (AdPyV) has a typical polyomavirus genome organization with three ORFs that encoded capsid proteins on the one strand and two non-structural protein-coding ORFs on the complementary strand. The genome of AdPyV shared ~60% pairwise identity with all avipolyomaviruses. Maximum-likelihood phylogenetic analysis of the large T-antigen (T-Ag) amino acid sequences showed that the T-Ag of AdPyV clustered with those of avipolyomaviruses, sharing between 48 and 52% identities. Only three viruses associated with Adélie penguins have been identified at a genomic level, avian influenza virus subtype H11N2 from the Antarctic Peninsula and, respectively, Pygoscelis adeliae papillomavirus and AdPyV from capes Crozier and Royds on Ross Island.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)851-857
JournalJournal of General Virology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2015
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