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...and more -- see the avian & livestock test menu for a complete listing of avian and livestock assays.

jaagsiekte sheep retrovirus PCR test
avian & livestock assay data sheet

Jaagsiekte sheep retrovirus (JSRV)

Test code: S0201
- Ultrasensitive qualitative detection of jaagsiekte sheep retrovirus proviral DNA by real time PCR.

Infection of sheep by jaagsiekte sheep retrovirus (JSRV) can result in ovine pulmonary adenocarcinoma (OPA), a contagious cancer. The disease was initially described in 1915 in South Africa and was subsequently found to be present worldwide. JSRV is a betaretrovirus, within the Retroviridae family.

This virus is transmitted between animals by close contact, mainly through aerosolized particles. Close breeding conditions are of major importance for the dissemination of the virus. Infected animals may take 2 to 4 years to develop the full spectrum of symptoms, but in some cases, the cancer may be diagnosed as early as a few months after birth. The onset of the disease seems to be age-dependent. Thus, animals may be carriers of the virus without symptoms and become potential viral reservoirs.

JSRV is phylogenetically related to the enzootic nasal tumor virus (ENTV) which is responsible for nasal adenocarcinoma, a contagious tumor of the nasal mucosa affecting sheep and goats. In ENTV-infected animals, epithelial cell proliferation causes continuous nasal discharge, respiratory distress, exophthalmos and skull deformations. Co-infection of ENTV and JSRV has been reported.

Detection of JSRV in sheep is complicated by the fact that a family of endogenous retroviruses, enJSRV (endogenous JSRV) closely related to JSRV, is present in the genomes of domestic and wild sheep and goats. JSRV and enJSRV genomes are highly similar with 90–98% homology in deduced amino-acid sequences. Endogenous retroviruses are vertically transmitted as stable Mendelian genes in the germline of most eukaryotes. These endogenous retroviral sequences derive from the integration of exogenous viruses into host genomes, followed by genetic stabilization through accumulation of mutations. These endogenous retroviral sequences are not active and their significance is not clear. However, their similarity to exogenous viral sequences is a factor in the design of PCR primers for detecting JSRV in these host species.

Currently, good serological methods to detect JSRV are not available. Molecular detection by PCR is the most important tool to screen animals for infection by this virus (Zhang et al., 2014).

Utilities:            

  • Help confirm the disease causing agent
  • Identify JSRV carriers
  • Screen research materials for the presence of JSRV
  • Help ensure that animal groups are free of JSRV
  • Early prevention of spread of the virus among animals
  • Minimize human exposure to the virus
  • Safety monitoring of biological products that derive from susceptible animals

References:
Zhang, K., Kong, H., Liu, Y., Shang, Y., Wu, B. and Liu, X. (2014) Diagnosis and phylogenetic analysis of ovine pulmonary adenocarcinoma in China. Virus Genes, 48:64–73.

Specimen requirements: Nasal swabs, or 0.2 ml whole blood in EDTA (purple top) or ACD (yellow top) tube, or 0.2 ml fresh, frozen or fixed tissue.

For specimen types other than those listed here, please call to confirm specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.

For all specimen types, if there will be a delay in shipping, or during very warm weather, refrigerate specimens until shipped and ship with a cold pack unless more stringent shipping requirements are specified. Frozen specimens should be shipped so as to remain frozen in transit. See shipping instructions for more information.

Turnaround time: 2 business days

Methodology: Qualitative real time PCR

Normal range: Nondetected

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