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Wednesday, January 30 • 10:40am - 11:00am
(FISHERIES: INVASIVE SPECIES 3) Genomic and In Vitro Changes of VHSv-IVb over the past Decade in the Great Lakes

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AUTHORS: Megan Niner, University of Toledo; Dr. Carol Stepien, NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Lab; Dr. Doug Leaman, Wright State University

ABSTRACT: The viral hemorrhagic septicemia virus (VHSv) is a fish virus responsible for occasional fish kills in the Laurentian Great Lakes in the last fifteen years. Substrain IVb is a recently emerged pathogen with an unusually large host range of over 30 species of fish, both of native and non-native status. With new outbreaks once again occurring, more insight into the evolutionary trends of this fish pathogen could help predict future trends. This study provides a unique examination of a wildlife pathogen in a natural setting. We sequenced the full genome of multiple VHSv-IVb isolates collected in the fifteen years following its emergence to examine evolutionary trends. For these 30 isolates, we compare and contrast differences in nucleotides, amino acids, mutation sites, and the number of transvisions and transversions to elucidate possible patterns across time. To understand how observed changes in sequences may affect the course of infection, further testing of three selected full genomes from Lake Erie were used in a variety of cell culture studies. Our selected isolates were haplotypes “v” (H31, round goby, 2015), “w” (B09, gizzard shad, 2016), and “w4” (G61, smallmouth bass, 2016). Cell experiments included testing for differences in pathogenicity from the original isolate haplotype “a” (MI03GL, 2003), examining cytopathogenicity, virus production, and immune response stimulation. All three new isolates appeared to behave similarly to “a” despite being recovered more than a decade later.

Wednesday January 30, 2019 10:40am - 11:00am

Attendees (4)