Origin of the European avian-like swine influenza viruses

J Gen Virol. 2014 Nov;95(Pt 11):2372-2376. doi: 10.1099/vir.0.068569-0. Epub 2014 Jul 29.


The avian-like swine influenza viruses emerged in 1979 in Belgium and Germany. Thereafter, they spread through many European swine-producing countries, replaced the circulating classical swine H1N1 influenza viruses, and became endemic. Serological and subsequent molecular data indicated an avian source, but details remained obscure due to a lack of relevant avian influenza virus sequence data. Here, the origin of the European avian-like swine influenza viruses was analysed using a collection of 16 European swine H1N1 influenza viruses sampled in 1979-1981 in Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy and France, as well as several contemporaneous avian influenza viruses of various serotypes. The phylogenetic trees suggested a triple reassortant with a unique genotype constellation. Time-resolved maximum clade credibility trees indicated times to the most recent common ancestors of 34-46 years (before 2008) depending on the RNA segment and the method of tree inference.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Europe / epidemiology
  • Genetic Variation
  • Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype / classification
  • Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype / genetics*
  • Molecular Epidemiology
  • Orthomyxoviridae Infections / epidemiology
  • Orthomyxoviridae Infections / virology
  • Phylogeny
  • RNA, Viral / genetics
  • Reassortant Viruses / classification
  • Reassortant Viruses / genetics
  • Sus scrofa / virology*
  • Swine
  • Swine Diseases / epidemiology
  • Swine Diseases / virology
  • Time Factors


  • RNA, Viral