Characterization of a recombinant canine coronavirus with a distinct receptor-binding (S1) domain
Regan AD, Millet JK, Tse LP, Chillag Z, Rinaldi VD, Licitra BN, Dubovi EJ, Town CD, Whittaker GR
Canine alphacoronaviruses (CCoV) exist in two serotypes, type I and II, both of which can cause severe gastroenteritis. Here, we characterize a canine alphacoronavirus, designated CCoV-A76, first isolated in 1976. Serological studies show that CCoV-A76 is distinct from other CCoVs, such as the prototype CCoV-1-71. Efficient replication of CCoV-A76 is restricted to canine cell lines, in contrast to the prototypical type II strain CCoV-1-71 that more efficiently replicates in feline cells. CCoV-A76 can use canine aminopeptidase N (cAPN) receptor for infection of cells, but was unable to use feline APN (fAPN). In contrast, CCoV-1-71 can utilize both. Genomic analysis shows that CCoV-A76 possesses a distinct spike, which is the result of a recombination between type I and type II CCoV, that occurred between the N- and C-terminal domains (NTD and C-domain) of the S1 subunit. These data suggest that CCoV-A76 represents a recombinant coronavirus form, with distinct host cell tropism.