Lien vers Pubmed [PMID] – 24121017
Infect. Genet. Evol. 2013 Dec;20:488-94
Feline and canine coronaviruses (FCoV and CCoV, respectively) are common pathogens of cats and dogs sometimes leading to lethal infections named feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) and canine pantropic coronavirus infection. FCoV and CCoV are each subdivided into two serotypes, FCoV-I/II and CCoV-I/II. A phylogenetic relationship is evident between, on one hand, CCoV-I/FCoV-I, and on the other hand, CCoV-II/FCoV-II, suggesting that interspecies transmission can occur. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the prevalence of coronavirus (CoV)-infected cats according to their contact with dogs and to genetically analyse the CoV strains infecting cats. From 2003 to 2009, we collected 88 faecal samples from healthy cats and 11 ascitic fluids from FIP cats. We investigated the possible contact with dog in the household and collected dogs samples if appropriate. Out of 99 cat samples, 26 were coronavirus positive, with six cats living with at least one dog, thus showing that contact with dogs does not appear as a predisposing factor for cats CoV infections. Molecular and phylogenetic analyses of FCoV strains were conducted using partial N and S sequences. Six divergent strains were identified with the N gene clustering with CCoV-I whereas the 3′ end of S was related to FCoV-I. Further analysis on those six samples was attempted by researching the presence of the ORF3 gene, the latter being peculiar to CCoV-I to date. We succeeded to amplify the ORF3 gene in five samples out of six. Thus, our data strongly suggest the circulation of atypical FCoV strains harbouring the CCoV-I ORF3 gene among cats. Moreover, the ORF3 genes recovered from the feline strains exhibited shared deletions, never described before, suggesting that these deletions could be critical in the adaptation of these strains to the feline host.