Bats have been recognized as an important natural reservoir for zoonotic viruses affecting both humans and livestock. They are likely to shed deadly emerging pathogens through feces and urine, materials that can be highly infectious to humans. In this issue, Waruhiu et al. performed the first country-wide surveillance of bat-borne viruses in Kenya spanning from 2012–2015 covering sites perceived to have medium to high level bat-human interaction. Nine virus families were screened, and 8 were detected with varying distributions. The study provides new and extended knowledge with regards to the virus diversity in Kenyan bat species, and hence raises the public health concern on the importance of continuous surveillance (See page 101-114 for details). The cover is a photo captured during the investigation in a bat cave in Kenya. (Image courtesy of Prof. Zhengli Shi).
Noroviruses are the leading cause of acute gastroenteritis in humans.Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (real-time RT-PCR) is a promising molecular method for the detection of noroviruses.In this study,the performance of three TaqMan real-time RT-PCR assays was assessed,which were one commercially available real-time RT-PCR kit (assay A: Norovirus Real Time RT-PCR kit) and two in-house real-time RT-PCR assays (assay B:LightCycler RNA Master Hybprobe and assay C:RealTime ready RNA Virus Master).Assays A and B showed higher sensitivity than assay C for norovirus GI,while they all had the same sensitivity (103 DNA copies/mL) for GII DNA standard controls.Assay B had the highest efficiency for both genogroups. No cross-reactivity was observed among GI and GII noroviruses,rotavirus,hepatitis A virus,and poliovirus.The detection rates of these assays in GI and GII norovirus-positive fecal samples were not significantly different.However,the mean quantification cycle (Cq) value of assay B for GII was lower than assays A and C with statistical significance (P-value,0.000).All three real-time RT-PCR assays could detect a variety of noroviruses including GI.2,GII.2,GII.3,GII.4,GII.6,GII.12,GII.17, and GII.21.This study suggests assay B as a suitable assay for the detection and quantification of noroviruses GI and GII due to good analytical sensitivity and higher performance to amplify norovirus on DNA standard controls and clinical samples.
In Morocco, molecular and genetic characterization of IBV strain diversity have been very limited. A long-term retrospective study on Moroccan isolates is required to improve understanding of IBV evolution and IB epidemiology. The objective of this report is to perform a retrospective analysis of the origin and evolution of 62 Moroccan IBV isolates obtained from unvaccinated (21%) and vaccinated (70%) poultry flocks showing clinical signs of IB between 1983 and 2014.