Genotyping of avian infectious bronchitis virus in Afghanistan (2016-2017): the first report

Document Type : Short paper


1 Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Poultry Diseases, Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute, Agricultural Research, Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Tehran, Iran

3 Department of Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Karaj Branch, Islamic Azad University, Alborz, Iran

4 Department of Avian Diseases, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

5 Department of Animal Science and Biology, Veterinary Faculty, Hariwa University, Herat, Afghanistan


Background: Avian infectious bronchitis (IB) is a highly contagious viral disease which affects the poultry industry. The virus exists in a wide variety of genotypes, and phylogenetic analysis has been used to classify infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) strains. Aims: The object of the study is a molecular characterization of circulating IBV in Afghanistan as a first study. Methods: The tracheal tissue specimens from 100 different commercial broiler flocks with respiratory distress in Afghanistan were collected during 2016-2017. After real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RRT-PCR), IBV-positive samples were further characterized. A 390 bp hypervariable spike glycoprotein gene segment was amplified using Nested PCR, sequenced, and analyzed. Results: The results of real-time RT-PCR showed that 45/100 of the mentioned flocks were IBV positive. Phylogenetic analysis of all positive samples revealed that IBV strains were clustered into two distinct genotypes: LX4 (GI-19) (9/45) and IS-1494 like (GI-23) (34/45). Also, 2 of the 45 samples remained uncharacterized. Conclusion: It is the first study focusing on the molecular epidemiology of IBV in Afghanistan, extending our understanding of IB in the region. These results showed the high rate of IB infection in Afghanistan broiler farms and confirm the continuing monitoring of IBVs to modify the vaccination program.


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