Clinicopathological Characterization in Poultry of Three Strains of Newcastle Disease Virus Isolated From Recent Outbreaks

Vet Pathol. 2011 Mar;48(2):349-60. doi: 10.1177/0300985810375806. Epub 2010 Aug 4.


Newcastle disease is a severe threat to the poultry industry and is caused by Newcastle disease virus, a member of the genus Avulavirus, family Paramyxoviridae. The virus is rapidly evolving, and several new genotypes have been discovered in the past few years. Characterization of these strains is important to evaluate field changes, anticipate new outbreaks, and develop adequate control measures. Three Newcastle disease isolates (APMV-1/duck/Vietnam, Long Bien/78/2002, APMV-1/chicken/Australia/9809-19-1107/1998, and APMV-1/double-crested cormorant/USA, Nevada/19529-04/2005) from recent outbreaks were investigated via clinicopathological assessment, immunohistochemistry (IHC), in situ hybridization, virus isolation, and serology in experimentally infected 4-week-old chickens. Phylogenetic studies showed that Australia isolate belongs to class II genotype I, Long Bien to class II genotype VIId, and Nevada cormorant to class II genotype V. Even though all 3 viruses had a virulent fusion protein cleavage site and ICPI values greater than 1.5, they all differed in their ability to cause clinical signs, in their lesions, and in their viral distribution in body tissues. The Long Bien isolate showed the most severe clinicopathological picture and the most widespread viral distribution. The Australia and Nevada cormorant isolates had a milder pathological phenotype, with viral replication restricted to only a few organs. The variability in clinicopathological characteristics despite the similarity in ICPI suggests that full clinicopathological assessment is necessary to fully characterize new isolates and that there are differences in pathogenesis among viruses of different genotypes.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Genotype
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Likelihood Functions
  • Models, Genetic
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Newcastle Disease / pathology*
  • Newcastle disease virus / classification
  • Newcastle disease virus / genetics*
  • Newcastle disease virus / pathogenicity*
  • Phylogeny*
  • Poultry
  • RNA, Viral / genetics
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Species Specificity
  • Virulence


  • RNA, Viral