Genotyping of Pestivirus A (Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus 1) detected in faeces and in other specimens of domestic and wild ruminants at the wildlife-livestock interface

Vet Microbiol. 2019 Aug:235:180-187. doi: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2019.07.002. Epub 2019 Jul 8.


Pestiviruses are widespread in the world among ungulates and infect both domestic and wild animals causing severe economic losses in livestock. Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus type 1 (BVDV-1), now re-designated as Pestivirus A, causes diseases mainly in cattle, while few data are available about infection in wild ruminants and about the role of these animals in viral maintenance and spread. In order to investigate BVDV-1 infection in domestic and wild ruminants, especially at the wildlife/livestock interface, bulk tank milk from dairy cattle and sheep and spleen from red deer, roe deer and fallow deer were analysed. Furthermore, faecal samples from Apennine chamois and from wild deer were evaluated as a suitable sample for detecting and genotyping pestiviruses. BVDV-1 RNA was found in all animal species tested but not sheep. Genotyping based on partial 5'UTR and Npro sequences detected BVDV-1a in samples from Apennine chamois, red deer, roe deer and pasture-raised cattle, while BVDV-1c was found in a faecal sample from Apennine chamois and in a spleen sample from roe deer. For the first time BVDV-1 RNA was found and genotyped from faecal samples of wild ruminants and of cattle. BVDV-1a detection in Apennine chamois, red deer, roe deer and pasture-raised cattle suggests that the eventuality of viral transmission at the wildlife/livestock interface should be carefully evaluated. BVDV subgenotype 1c was found for the first time in roe deer and Apennine chamois in Central Italy, therefore the epidemiological role of these animals and the viral ecology should be further investigated.

Keywords: BVDV-1; Domestic and wild ruminants; Faeces; Genetic typing; Pestivirus A.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Animals, Wild / virology*
  • Bovine Virus Diarrhea-Mucosal Disease / virology
  • Cattle / virology
  • Deer / virology
  • Diarrhea Virus 1, Bovine Viral / genetics
  • Diarrhea Viruses, Bovine Viral / genetics
  • Feces / virology*
  • Genotype
  • Italy
  • Livestock / virology*
  • Pestivirus / classification
  • Pestivirus / genetics*
  • Pestivirus Infections / veterinary*
  • Pestivirus Infections / virology
  • Phylogeny
  • Ruminants / virology*
  • Rupicapra / virology