Highly pathogenic avian influenza A(H5N1) virus infection in foxes with PB2-M535I identified as a novel mammalian adaptation, Northern Ireland, July 2023
European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control
We report cases of mammalian infection with highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) virus A(H5N1) clade 184.108.40.206b in Northern Ireland. Two common gulls (Larus canus) and two red fox kits (Vulpes vulpes), were found dead in close vicinity. Comparison of viral whole genome sequences obtained from the animals identified a novel mammalian adaptation, PB2-M535I. Analysis of genetic sequences from other recent mammalian infections shows that this mutation has arisen on at least five occasions in three European countries since April 2023.
Publication history: Accepted - 17 October 2023; Published - 19 October 2023.
Lagan, P., McKenna, R., Baleed, S., Hanna, B., Barley, J., McConnell, S., Georgaki, A., Sironen, T., Kauppinen, A., Gadd, T., Lindh, E., Ikonen, N., McMenamy, M.J. and Lemon, K. (2023) ‘Highly pathogenic avian influenza A(H5N1) virus infection in foxes with PB2-M535I identified as a novel mammalian adaptation, Northern Ireland, July 2023’, Eurosurveillance. European Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC). Available at: https://doi.org/10.2807/1560-7917.es.2023.28.42.2300526.