Phylogenetic analysis of swine influenza viruses isolated from humans in Alma-Ata, Kazakhstan
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Continuous surveillance of influenza becomes important considering the economic, epidemic and pandemic implications of influenza infections. This study details phylogenetic & molecular analysis of the genes of four swine influenza viruses isolated from humans in Alma-Ata, Kazakhstan. Phylogenetic analysis placed the eight segments of the four viruses in the classical H1N1 swine clade, along with the isolate A/sw/Jamesburg/1942, except for the HA of A/Alma-Ata/32/98, which was placed in the human H1N1 lineage, along with the isolate A/WS/1933. On amino acid analysis, the viruses displayed mutations on HA and ribonucleoproteins which putatively disrupt antigenic recognition of the virus by the host immune system. The presence of these viruses relatively unchanged for 6 decades after their initial isolation could be speculated to be a combination of laboratory leaks in southern USSR in 1980s, low divergence of classical H1N1 viruses in pigs, and the low population density of Kazakhstan.