Next-generation sequencing sheds light on rotavirus in Indonesia

June 1, 2018, Kobe University
The red dots are rotavirus strains identified in Indonesia. They are very different genetically from the typical human rotavirus strains (top left). Credit: Kobe University

Rotavirus A causes acute diarrhea in young children, and infects both animals and humans worldwide. A Japanese research group has found that the acute gastroenteritis infecting children in Indonesia between 2015 and 2016 was caused by dominant strains of equine-like G3 rotavirus, genetically different from human strains of the virus. The findings could shed light on how the virus traveled to Indonesia from neighboring countries.

The research team was led by Professor Ikuo Shoji, Project Assistant Professor Takako Utsumi (both from Kobe University's Graduate School of Medicine) and Professor Kazuhiko Katayama (National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Japan). Their findings were published on March 27, 2018 in the online edition of Infection, Genetics and Evolution.

Rotavirus A (RVA) consists of 11 segmented genomes. This segmented nature means that genetic reassortment often occurs, and the can evolve into new versions. In 2006 a was developed and used in many countries, but recently different countries have reported varying levels of effectiveness for the vaccine. This could partly be caused by different dominant strains of the virus.

The research team aimed to shed light on the genetic characteristics of rotavirus strains in Indonesia. They carried out molecular analysis of the rotavirus genome using stool samples from children in Indonesia infected with . For one year from 2015 to 2016, the group collected stool samples from 134 children under 5 years old admitted to hospital in Surabaya. Using immunochromatography, they examined the for rotavirus A, and found that 31.3% were RVA antigen-positive. They then discovered that the RVAs were the rare strains G3P[8] and G3P[6]. With further analysis of all 11 strains of the virus using next-generation sequencing, they determined that this was equine-like G3 rotavirus with a DS-1-like genetic backbone. This strain has also been reported in Australia, Hungary, Spain and Brazil.

"Our team now plans to analyze time-dependent changes in Indonesia's dominant rotavirus strains and clarify how they were transmitted to Indonesia from neighboring countries. We will also investigate their impact on infection in Japan" comments Professor Shoji. "We will examine samples collected from vaccinated patients, analyze the genetic information of strains that resist vaccine-based immunity, and establish a surveillance system to prevent these from entering Japan."

Explore further: Asymptomatic infection helps norovirus to spread in Indonesia

More information: Takako Utsumi et al, Equine-like G3 rotavirus strains as predominant strains among children in Indonesia in 2015–2016, Infection, Genetics and Evolution (2018). DOI: 10.1016/j.meegid.2018.03.027

Related Stories

Asymptomatic infection helps norovirus to spread in Indonesia

November 6, 2017
Norovirus, also referred to as the "winter vomiting bug", is the most common cause of acute gastroenteritis in humans. A Japanese research team has shown that norovirus is significantly present in the stools of healthy volunteers ...

Researchers successfully develop a rotavirus vaccine which could benefit millions of children

February 22, 2018
Researchers from the Murdoch Children's Research Institute (MCRI) have developed a rotavirus vaccine that provides earlier protection from dehydrating diarrhoea for infants and young children.

Rotavirus vaccine could reduce UK health inequalities, new study suggests

January 29, 2018
New research led by the University of Liverpool has found that childhood vaccination against rotavirus has greatest benefit in the most deprived communities and could contribute to reducing health inequalities in the UK.

New low-cost rotavirus vaccine could reduce disease burden in developing countries

March 22, 2017
A new vaccine for rotavirus was found to be 66.7% effective in preventing severe gastroenteritis caused by the virus, according to a new study from researchers at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Epicentre, Paris. ...

Rotavirus vaccine greatly reduced gastroenteritis hospitalizations in children

June 24, 2011
Vaccination against rotavirus, a major cause of severe acute gastroenteritis in children, dramatically decreased hospitalization rates for the infection among infants in three U.S. counties, according to a new study published ...

Recommended for you

Novel molecular target to prevent scarring of the lung blood vessels identified

June 13, 2018
Pulmonary arterial hypertension, a severe form of cardiopulmonary disease in which the arteries that transport blood from the heart to the lungs become thickened, constricted, and scarred, is a disease for which there is ...

Fast-acting cholera vaccine could curb outbreaks

June 13, 2018
A tricked-out cholera vaccine starts protecting against the deadly disease within a day, experiments in rabbits suggest. The rapid protection offered by this designer vaccine may one day limit the spread of cholera outbreaks, ...

Lineage of TB traced and compared to early human migration

June 13, 2018
A team of researchers from the University of Wisconsin, the University of Iowa and the Norwegian Institute of Public Health has carried out genetic studies of tuberculosis to learn more about its lineage and to compare it ...

Finally, hope for a syphilis vaccine

June 12, 2018
Despite efforts to eradicate it, syphilis is on the rise. Until now, most health agencies focused on treating infected people and their sex partners but new discoveries may make a vaccine possible, UConn Health researchers ...

How to slow down Ebola—Virologists use 'genetic trees' to evaluate intervention strategies

June 12, 2018
The phylogenetic tree of the 2013-2016 Ebola epidemic doesn't just reveal how the Ebola virus was able to evolve—it also reveals which events and preventive measures accelerated or slowed down its spread. These findings ...

Small children and pregnant women may be underdosed in current malaria regimen

June 12, 2018
Current recommended dosing regimens for the most widely used treatment for uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria may be sub-optimal for the most vulnerable populations of patients, according to a study published this ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.