The diversity of norovirus (NV) genotypes was investigated in persons who were ill with acute gastroenteritis associated with the consumption of oysters. Initial results from a commercial enzyme immunoassay (EIA) indicated a mixed NV genogroup I (GI) and II (GII) outbreak. A reverse-transcriptase (RT)-PCR for NVs was applied to nucleic acid extracted from faecal specimens collected from symptomatic cases. Using primers that amplified contiguous sequences in the ORF1/2 region of the NV genome and a hemi-nested PCR derived from this assay, three different GII and two GI NV genotypes were detected and the strains were characterised by DNA sequencing. Using this approach a recombinant NV genotype, rGII-3a (recombinant Harrow/Mexico) the predominant strain identified in several symptomatic cases from the outbreak, was detected and characterised. No other gastroenteric viruses, including rotavirus, astrovirus, sapovirus and adenovirus 40/41 were detected by RT-PCR and PCR.
- Multiple strains