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Changes of avian influenza virus subtypes before and after vaccination in live poultry in China

We investigated fluctuations in the detection rates of avian influenza virus (AIV) subtypes H5, H7, and H9 in live bird markets (LBMs) in Nanchang city, Chinese province Jiangxi, before and after the Chinese nationwide AIV vaccination campaign against highly pathogenic (HP) AIV subtype H5 and H7. Samples were tested for nucleic acid of type A avian influenza virus by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction technology. The H5, H7 and H9 subtypes of influenza viruses were further classified for the positive results. Based on the analysis of 2,119 samples collected from February 2016 to December 2019, we found that AIV subtypes H5, H7, H9 showed a seasonal pattern, and the positive rate of avian influenza tended to reach its peak in the colder season. The detection rate of AIV subtypes H5, H7, H9 of chickens (39.26%) was significantly higher than that of ducks (5.78%) and pigeons (4.31%). After vaccination, the positive rates of the H5 subtype (0.27%) and the H7 subtype (0.00%) decreased significantly, while the positive rate of the H9 subtype (29.95%) increased significantly. The H9 subtype has become the dominant subtype detected in live poultry and occupies a dominant position in the live bird market. This study showed that the government of China should establish measures for the long-term control of avian influenza.

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