Detection of avian coronavirus infectious bronchitis virus type QX infection in Switzerland

Infectious bronchitis, a disease of chickens caused by Avian coronavirus infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), leads to severe economic losses for the poultry industry worldwide. Various attempts to control the virus based on vaccination strategies are performed. However, due to the emergence of novel genotypes, an effective control of the virus is hindered. In 1996, a novel viral genotype named IBV-QX was reported for the first time in Qingdao, Shandong province, China. The first appearance of an IBV-QX isolate in Europe was reported between 2003 and 2004 in The Netherlands. Subsequently, infections with this genotype were found in several other European countries such as France, Italy, Germany, United Kingdom, Slovenia, and Sweden. The present report describes the use of a new set of degenerate primers that amplify a 636-bp fragment within the S1 gene by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction to detect the occurrence of IBV-QX infection in Switzerland.

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