Phylogenomic characterization of ranaviruses isolated from cultured fish and amphibians in Thailand

Preeyanan Sriwanayos, Kuttichantran Subramaniam, Natalie K. Stilwell, Kamonchai Imnoi, Vsevolod L. Popov, Somkiat Kanchanakhan, Jaree Polchana, Thomas B. Waltzek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Ranaviruses are emerging pathogens associated with worldwide epizootics in farmed and wild ectothermic vertebrates. In this study, we determined the full genomes of eight ranaviruses isolated from marbled sleeper goby (Oxyeleotris marmorata), goldfish (Carassius auratus), guppy (Poecilia reticulata), tiger frog (Hoplobatrachus tigerinus), Asian grass frog (Fejervarya limnocharis), and East Asian bullfrog (H. rugulosus) cultured or imported into Thailand. These ranaviral isolates induced the same cytopathic effects (i.e., progression of coalescing round plaques) in epithelioma papulosum cyprini (EPC) cell cultures. Transmission electron microscopy of infected EPC cells revealed cytoplasmic viral particles with ultrastructural features typical for ranaviruses. Pairwise genetic comparisons of the complete major capsid protein coding sequences from the Thai ranaviruses displayed the highest identity (99.8%–100%) to a ranavirus (tiger frog virus; TFV) isolated from diseased tiger frogs cultured in China, a slightly lower identity (99.3%–99.4%) to a ranavirus (Wamena virus; WV) isolated from diseased green tree pythons (Morelia viridis) illegally exported from Papua New Guinea, and a lower identity to 35 other ranaviruses (93.7%–98.6%). Phylogenomic analyses supported the eight Thai ranaviruses, Chinese TFV, and WV as a subclade within a larger frog virus 3 clade. Our findings confirm the spread of TFV among cultured fish and amphibians in Asia and likely in reptiles in Oceania. Biosecurity measures are needed to ensure TFV does not continue to spread throughout Southeast Asia and to other parts of the world via international trade.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)963-979
Number of pages17
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 3 2020


  • Iridovirus
  • Phylogenomics
  • Ranavirus
  • Thailand
  • Tiger frog virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


Dive into the research topics of 'Phylogenomic characterization of ranaviruses isolated from cultured fish and amphibians in Thailand'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this