Science News
from research organizations

New Coronavirus Found in Beluga Whale

Date:
May 25, 2008
Source:
American Society for Microbiology
Summary:
Researchers have determined a never before seen virus found in the liver of a beluga whale to be a new strain of the coronavirus. With emerging infectious diseases on the rise, it is now estimated that 75% derive from zoonotic sources. This being the case, health officials are now looking to zoological parks and aquariums for emerging virus surveillance.
Share:
       
FULL STORY

Researchers from Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri; Sea Word, San Diego, CA; and the University of California at Davis have determined a never before seen virus found in the liver of a beluga whale to be a new strain of the coronavirus.

With emerging infectious diseases on the rise, it is now estimated that 75% derive from zoonotic sources. This being the case, health officials are now looking to zoological parks and aquariums for emerging virus surveillance.

ViroChip is a panviral DNA testing method capable of detecting thousands of known viruses as well as unknown viruses linked to previously identified viral families. In the study a ViroChip was used to evaluate the liver tissue of a male captive-born beluga whale for viruses following his death after a short illness characterized by pulmonary disease and acute liver failure.

Results revealed a highly divergent novel coronavirus deemed most similar to group 3 coronaviruses. The virus has been tentatively named coronavirus SW1.

"We have used a ViroChip to identify a novel coronavirus directly from primary animal tissues," say the researchers. "Furthermore, the identification of a previously unrecognized virus in a captive animal underscores the vast diversity of viruses that remains unexplored in animals."


Story Source:

The above post is reprinted from materials provided by American Society for Microbiology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. K.A. Mihindukulasuriya, G. Wu, J. St. Leger, R.W. Nordhausen, D. Wang. 2008. Identification of a novel coronavirus from a beluga whale by using a panviral microarray. Journal of Virology, 82. 10: 5084-5088. doi:10.1128/JVI.02722-07

Cite This Page:

American Society for Microbiology. "New Coronavirus Found in Beluga Whale." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 May 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080522155802.htm>.
American Society for Microbiology. (2008, May 25). New Coronavirus Found in Beluga Whale. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080522155802.htm
American Society for Microbiology. "New Coronavirus Found in Beluga Whale." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080522155802.htm (accessed July 29, 2015).

Share This Page: