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2024-4-15 14:19:31

Bessière P, Gaide N, Croville G, Crispo M, Fusade-. High pathogenicity avian influenza A (H5N1) clade virus infection in a captive Tibetan black bear ( Ursus thibetanus): investigations based on paraffin-embedded tissues, France, 2022. Microbiol Spectr. 2024 Feb 2:e0373623
submited by kickingbird at Feb, 3, 2024 10:32 AM from Microbiol Spectr. 2024 Feb 2:e0373623

High pathogenicity avian influenza viruses (HPAIVs) H5Nx of clade have been circulating increasingly in both wild and domestic birds in recent years. In turn, this has led to an increase in the number of spillover events affecting mammals. In November 2022, an HPAIV H5N1 caused an outbreak in a zoological park in the south of France, resulting in the death of a Tibetan black bear (Ursus thibetanus) and several captive and wild bird species. We detected the virus in various tissues of the bear and a wild black-headed gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus) found dead in its enclosure using histopathology, two different in situ detection techniques, and next-generation sequencing, all performed on formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues. Phylogenetic analysis performed on the hemagglutinin gene segment showed that bear and gull strains shared 99.998% genetic identity, making the bird strain the closest related strain. We detected the PB2 E627K mutation in minute quantities in the gull, whereas it predominated in the bear, which suggests that this mammalian adaptation marker was selected during the bear infection. Our results provide the first molecular and histopathological characterization of an H5N1 virus infection in this bear species.IMPORTANCEAvian influenza viruses are able to cross the species barrier between birds and mammals because of their high genetic diversity and mutation rate. Using formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues, we were able to investigate a Tibetan black bear´s infection by a high pathogenicity H5N1 avian influenza virus at the molecular, phylogenetic, and histological levels. Our results highlight the importance of virological surveillance programs in mammals and the importance of raising awareness among veterinarians and zookeepers of the clinical presentations associated with H5Nx virus infection in mammals.

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