Pseudorabies or Aujeszky's disease (AD), caused by pseudorabies virus (PRV) is a major concern in swine production. In the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, AD was only detected in 1954, in cattle. In 2003 two outbreaks of encephalitis occurred on the northern region of the state, close to the border with the state of Santa Catarina. Pseudorabies virus (PRV) was isolated from distinct farms within the region and subjected to antigenic and genomic analyses. These isolates were compared with prototype strains NIA-3 and NP. Antigenic characterization with a panel of monoclonal antibodies (Mabs) directed to viral glycoproteins (gB, gC, gD and gE-,) was performed by an imunoperoxidase monolayer assay (IPMA) on infected cell monolayers. Genomic characterization was carried out by restriction enzyme analysis (REA) of the whole DNA viral genome with Bam HI. The antigenic profile of the eight isolates from Rio Grande do Sul as well as strains NIA-3 and NP were similar. REA analysis revealed that all isolates from Rio Grande do Sul displayed a genomic type II arrangement, a genotype often found in other outbreaks of AD previously reported in other Brazilian states. The results obtained suggest that the eight isolates examined here were similar.
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