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Zool Res ; 43(6): 977-988, 2022 Nov 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2226561


Previous studies have identified multiple viruses in dead or severely diseased pangolins, but descriptions of the virome in healthy pangolins are lacking. This poses a greater risk of cross-species transmission due to poor preventive awareness and frequent interactions with breeders. In this study, we investigated the viral composition of 34 pangolins with no signs of disease at the time of sampling and characterized a large number of arthropod-associated viruses belonging to 11 families and vertebrate viruses belonging to eight families, including those with pathogenic potential in humans and animals. Several important vertebrate viruses were identified in the pangolins, including parvovirus, pestivirus, and picobirnavirus. The picobirnavirus was clustered with human and grey teal picobirnaviruses. Viruses with cross-species transmission ability were also identified, including circovirus, rotavirus, and astrovirus. Our study revealed that pangolins are frequently exposed to arthropod-associated viruses in the wild and can carry many vertebrate viruses under natural conditions. This study provides important insights into the virome of pangolins, underscoring the importance of monitoring potential pathogens in healthy pangolins to prevent outbreaks of infectious diseases in domesticated animals and humans.

Pangolins , Viruses , Humans , Animals , Virome , Animals, Domestic , Phylogeny
Nat Microbiol ; 7(8): 1259-1269, 2022 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1972611


Pangolins are the most trafficked wild animal in the world according to the World Wildlife Fund. The discovery of SARS-CoV-2-related coronaviruses in Malayan pangolins has piqued interest in the viromes of these wild, scaly-skinned mammals. We sequenced the viromes of 161 pangolins that were smuggled into China and assembled 28 vertebrate-associated viruses, 21 of which have not been previously reported in vertebrates. We named 16 members of Hunnivirus, Pestivirus and Copiparvovirus pangolin-associated viruses. We report that the L-protein has been lost from all hunniviruses identified in pangolins. Sequences of four human-associated viruses were detected in pangolin viromes, including respiratory syncytial virus, Orthopneumovirus, Rotavirus A and Mammalian orthoreovirus. The genomic sequences of five mammal-associated and three tick-associated viruses were also present. Notably, a coronavirus related to HKU4-CoV, which was originally found in bats, was identified. The presence of these viruses in smuggled pangolins identifies these mammals as a potential source of emergent pathogenic viruses.

COVID-19 , Chiroptera , Animals , Humans , Mammals , Pangolins , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
Nature ; 583(7815): 282-285, 2020 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-17844


The ongoing outbreak of viral pneumonia in China and across the world is associated with a new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-21. This outbreak has been tentatively associated with a seafood market in Wuhan, China, where the sale of wild animals may be the source of zoonotic infection2. Although bats are probable reservoir hosts for SARS-CoV-2, the identity of any intermediate host that may have facilitated transfer to humans is unknown. Here we report the identification of SARS-CoV-2-related coronaviruses in Malayan pangolins (Manis javanica) seized in anti-smuggling operations in southern China. Metagenomic sequencing identified pangolin-associated coronaviruses that belong to two sub-lineages of SARS-CoV-2-related coronaviruses, including one that exhibits strong similarity in the receptor-binding domain to SARS-CoV-2. The discovery of multiple lineages of pangolin coronavirus and their similarity to SARS-CoV-2 suggests that pangolins should be considered as possible hosts in the emergence of new coronaviruses and should be removed from wet markets to prevent zoonotic transmission.

Betacoronavirus/genetics , Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , Eutheria/virology , Evolution, Molecular , Genome, Viral/genetics , Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Betacoronavirus/chemistry , Betacoronavirus/classification , COVID-19 , China/epidemiology , Chiroptera/virology , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Disease Reservoirs/virology , Genomics , Humans , Malaysia , Pandemics , Phylogeny , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Recombination, Genetic , SARS-CoV-2 , Sequence Alignment , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Zoonoses/virology