Open Veterinary Journal

Open Veterinary Journal

Peer-Reviewed Journal 
ISSN 2218-6050 (Online), ISSN 2226-4485 (Print) 

"Original Research"

More cell culture passaged camelpox virus sequences found resembling those of vaccinia virus

Abdelmalik I. Khalafalla(1,2*), Mohamed A. Al Hosani(1), Hassan Zackaria Ali Ishag(1) and Salama S. Al Muhairi(1)

1- Veterinary Laboratories Division, Animal Health Sector, Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA), Abu Dhabi, UAE

2- Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Khartoum, Shambat, P.O. Box 32, Khartoum North Sudan


Background: Camelpox is the most infectious and economically important disease of camelids that causes significant morbidity and mortality rates. Several live attenuated vaccines against camelpox virus (CMLV) are produced worldwide by passaging field isolates in cell culture. Sequence of a high passage Saudi isolate of CMLV was previously found closely resembled Vaccinia virus (VACV).

Aim: To determine whether other high cell culture passage CMLV isolates are genetically resemble VACV and further to explore the possible mechanism of the resemblance.

Methods: We performed PCR and DNA sequence analysis of ATIP, L1R and ORF 185 genes on different cell culture passage levels of a field isolate, two high passage vaccines, wild-type and reference strains of CMLV.

Results: We demonstrate that additional two high passage attenuated vaccine candidate from Sudan and UAE likewise contain sequences resembling VACV more than CMLV. Furthermore, sequence analysis of the A-type inclusion body protein (ATIP) gene of selected virus passages in cell culture revealed that the shift to VACV-like occurred between passage 11 and 20 and up to the 10th passage the genome still resembles wild-type virus. This observation was further confirmed by recombination analysis which indicated recombination events at ATIP and ORF185 genes occurred at higher passages.

Conclusion: We confirmed that cell culture passage CMLV turn to resemble VACV after cell culture passage and concluded that the resemblance may not be a result of contamination or misidentification as previously thought but could be due to recombination events that occurred during the passage process.

Keywords: Camelpox virus, Cell culture passage, Phylogenetic analysis.

Cite this paper:

AKhalafalla1, A.I., Al Hosani, M.A., Ishag, H.Z.A. and Al Muhairi, S.S. 2020. More cell culture passaged camelpox virus sequences found resembling those of vaccinia virus. Open Vet. J. 10(2), 144-156.