LARGE- SCALE STUDY OF THE MOST COMMON AVIAN FLU VIRAL SUBTYPES IN WILD BIRDS THROUGHOUT IRAQKARAR MOHAMMED ABDULSADA
Avian flu is a type a influenza virus which is important zoonotic pathogen causing marked public health and serious economic problems. Studying viral subtypes of avian flu in wild birds (natural reservoir) plays a key role in determination of viral spread and predilection of future epidemics and pandemics. Sample collection through taking either nasal swab or fresh tracheal swab in case of dead birds, 457 of wild birds belong to eleven different species from many provinces in Iraq included in this study, advance specified molecular techniques were used, Reverse Transcription Real Time PCR (rRT- qPCR) was done to investigate the presence of the most common viral subtypes. Avian flu was reported in 4.81% of the wild birds at Iraq; highest infection rate has been recorded in the Tufted duck, 11.11%, in the other hand, the infection was not showed in quail, gull, cormorant and heron; following subtypes were recorded: H5N1, H5N2, H7N9 and H9N2 where as other AIVs subtypes were not founded. Subtype H5N1 is the prevalent type which observed in 40.9% of positive samples, H97N2 ranked below in 27.2% of samples, whereas subtypes H5N2 and H7N9 came in 22.7% and 9% of positive samples, respectively. This study has demonstrated the incidence of avian flu in many different kinds of wild birds at Iraq; to the authorsâ knowledge, this is the first that recorded presence of H5N1, H5N2, H7N9 and H9N2 herein, that provide valuable information concern viral subtypes for researchers, veterinarians at our country in addition to public health importance of the virus.