Evolution of canine parvovirus involved loss and gain of feline host range

Virology. 1996 Jan 15;215(2):186-9. doi: 10.1006/viro.1996.0021.


Canine parvovirus (CPV) type-2 emerged as a new virus infecting dogs in 1978, and it was probably derived as a variant of feline panleukopenia virus or of a closely related virus infecting another carnivore. CPV type-2 was subsequently replaced in nature by antigenically variant viruses (CPV type-2a and CPV type-2b) which now coexist in dog populations worldwide. We show that CPV type-2 isolates did not replicate in cats, but that both CPV type-2a and CPV type-2b isolates replicated efficiently. About 10% of the viruses isolated from cats with natural parvovirus disease were antigenically indistinguishable from CPV type-2a or type-2b. The capsid protein gene sequence of a 1990 feline parvovirus isolate ("FPV-24") was essentially identical to the sequence of CPV type-2b viruses from dogs. The loss and reacquisition of the feline host range in CPV was most likely due in each case to small numbers of changes in a region of the virus capsid where three protein monomers interact.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, Viral / analysis
  • Antigens, Viral / classification
  • Base Sequence
  • Biological Evolution*
  • Capsid / genetics
  • Cat Diseases / virology
  • Cats
  • DNA, Viral
  • Dogs
  • Feline Panleukopenia Virus / genetics
  • Feline Panleukopenia Virus / physiology*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Parvoviridae Infections / veterinary
  • Parvoviridae Infections / virology
  • Parvovirus, Canine / genetics
  • Parvovirus, Canine / physiology*
  • Phylogeny


  • Antigens, Viral
  • DNA, Viral

Associated data

  • GENBANK/U22896