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Spatial epidemiology and genetic diversity of SARS-CoV-2 and related coronaviruses in domestic and wild animals

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posted on 2021-01-01, 00:00 authored by Ariful Islam, J Ferdous, M A Sayeed, S Islam, M K Rahman, J Abedin, O Saha, M M Hassan, T Shirin
The Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) showed susceptibility to diverse animal species. We conducted this study to understand the spatial epidemiology, genetic diversity, and statistically significant genetic similarity along with per-gene recombination events of SARS-CoV-2 and related viruses (SC2r-CoVs) in animals globally. We collected a number of different animal species infected with SARS-CoV-2 and its related viruses. Then, we retrieved genome sequences of SARS-CoV-2 and SC2r-CoVs from GISAID and NCBI GenBank for genomic and mutational analysis. Although the evolutionary origin of SARS-CoV-2 remains elusive, the diverse SC2r-CoV have been detected in multiple Rhinolophus bat species and in Malayan pangolin. To date, human-to-animal spillover events have been reported in cat, dog, tiger, lion, gorilla, leopard, ferret, puma, cougar, otter, and mink in 25 countries. Phylogeny and genetic recombination events of SC2r-CoVs showed higher similarity to the bat coronavirus RaTG13 and BANAL-103 for most of the genes and to some Malayan pangolin coronavirus (CoV) strains for the N protein from bats and pangolin showed close resemblance to SARS-CoV-2. The clustering of animal and human strains from the same geographical area has proved human-to-animal transmission of the virus. The Alpha, Delta and Mu-variant of SARS-CoV-2 was detected in dog, gorilla, lion, tiger, otter, and cat in the USA, India, Czech Republic, Belgium, and France with momentous genetic similarity with human SARS-CoV-2 sequences. The mink variant mutation (spike_Y453F) was detected in both humans and domestic cats. Moreover, the dog was affected mostly by clade O (66.7%), whereas cat and American mink were affected by clade GR (31.6 and 49.7%, respectively). The α-variant was detected as 2.6% in cat, 4.8% in dog, 14.3% in tiger, 66.7% in gorilla, and 77.3% in lion. The highest mutations observed in mink where the substitution of D614G in spike (95.2%) and P323L in NSP12 (95.2%) protein. In dog, cat, gorilla, lion, and tiger, Y505H and Y453F were the common mutations followed by Y145del, Y144del, and V70I in S protein. We recommend vaccine provision for pet and zoo animals to reduce the chance of transmission in animals. Besides, continuous epidemiological and genomic surveillance of coronaviruses in animal host is crucial to find out the immediate ancestor of SARS-CoV-2 and to prevent future CoVs threats to humans.

History

Journal

PLoS One

Volume

16

Issue

12

Article number

e0260635

Pagination

1 - 27

Publisher

Public Library of Science

Location

San Francisco, Calif.

ISSN

1932-6203

eISSN

1932-6203

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

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