Resistance to RHD virus in wild Australian rabbits

Comparison of susceptible and resistant individuals using a genomewide approach

Nina I. Schwensow, Harald Detering, Stephen Pederson, Camila Mazzoni, Ron Sinclair, David Peacock, John Kovaliski, Brian Cooke, Jörns Fickel, Simone Sommer

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    3 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Deciphering the genes involved in disease resistance is essential if we are to understand host–pathogen coevolutionary processes. The rabbit haemorrhagic disease virus (RHDV) was imported into Australia in 1995 as a biocontrol agent to manage one of the most successful and devastating invasive species, the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). During the first outbreaks of the disease, RHDV caused mortality rates of up to 97%. Recently, however, increased genetic resistance to RHDV has been reported. Here, we have aimed to identify genomic differences between rabbits that survived a natural infection with RHDV and those that died in the field using a genomewide next-generation sequencing (NGS) approach. We detected 72 SNPs corresponding to 133 genes associated with survival of a RHD infection. Most of the identified genes have known functions in virus infections and replication, immune responses or apoptosis, or have previously been found to be regulated during RHD. Some of the genes identified in experimental studies, however, did not seem to play a role under natural selection regimes, highlighting the importance of field studies to complement the genomic background of wildlife diseases. Our study provides a set of candidate markers as a tool for the future scanning of wild rabbits for their resistance to RHDV. This is important both for wild rabbit populations in southern Europe where RHD is regarded as a serious problem decimating the prey of endangered predator species and for assessing the success of currently planned RHDV variant biocontrol releases in Australia.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4551-4561
    Number of pages11
    JournalMolecular Ecology
    Volume26
    Issue number17
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2017

    Fingerprint

    Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease Virus
    Rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus
    virus
    rabbits
    Rabbits
    Viruses
    viruses
    Genes
    gene
    genes
    infection
    wildlife diseases
    Introduced Species
    genomics
    Endangered Species
    Disease Resistance
    Oryctolagus cuniculus
    Genetic Selection
    Southern European region
    genetic resistance

    Cite this

    Schwensow, N. I., Detering, H., Pederson, S., Mazzoni, C., Sinclair, R., Peacock, D., ... Sommer, S. (2017). Resistance to RHD virus in wild Australian rabbits: Comparison of susceptible and resistant individuals using a genomewide approach. Molecular Ecology, 26(17), 4551-4561. https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.14228
    Schwensow, Nina I. ; Detering, Harald ; Pederson, Stephen ; Mazzoni, Camila ; Sinclair, Ron ; Peacock, David ; Kovaliski, John ; Cooke, Brian ; Fickel, Jörns ; Sommer, Simone. / Resistance to RHD virus in wild Australian rabbits : Comparison of susceptible and resistant individuals using a genomewide approach. In: Molecular Ecology. 2017 ; Vol. 26, No. 17. pp. 4551-4561.
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    Schwensow, NI, Detering, H, Pederson, S, Mazzoni, C, Sinclair, R, Peacock, D, Kovaliski, J, Cooke, B, Fickel, J & Sommer, S 2017, 'Resistance to RHD virus in wild Australian rabbits: Comparison of susceptible and resistant individuals using a genomewide approach', Molecular Ecology, vol. 26, no. 17, pp. 4551-4561. https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.14228

    Resistance to RHD virus in wild Australian rabbits : Comparison of susceptible and resistant individuals using a genomewide approach. / Schwensow, Nina I.; Detering, Harald; Pederson, Stephen; Mazzoni, Camila; Sinclair, Ron; Peacock, David; Kovaliski, John; Cooke, Brian; Fickel, Jörns; Sommer, Simone.

    In: Molecular Ecology, Vol. 26, No. 17, 01.09.2017, p. 4551-4561.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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    T2 - Comparison of susceptible and resistant individuals using a genomewide approach

    AU - Schwensow, Nina I.

    AU - Detering, Harald

    AU - Pederson, Stephen

    AU - Mazzoni, Camila

    AU - Sinclair, Ron

    AU - Peacock, David

    AU - Kovaliski, John

    AU - Cooke, Brian

    AU - Fickel, Jörns

    AU - Sommer, Simone

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