Taqman Real-Time PCR Detects Avipoxvirus DNA in Blood of Hawaìi `Amakihi (Hemignathus virens)

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Avipoxvirus sp. is a significant threat to endemic bird populations on several groups of islands worldwide, including Hawaìi, the Galapagos Islands, and the Canary Islands. Accurate identification and genotyping of Avipoxvirus is critical to the study of this disease and how it interacts with other pathogens, but currently available methods rely on invasive sampling of pox-like lesions and may be especially harmful in smaller birds.

Methodology/Principal Findings

Here, we present a nested TaqMan Real-Time PCR for the detection of the Avipoxvirus 4b core protein gene in archived blood samples from Hawaiian birds. The method was successful in amplifying Avipoxvirus DNA from packed blood cells of one of seven Hawaiian honeycreepers with confirmed Avipoxvirus infections and 13 of 28 Hawaìi `amakihi (Hemignathus virens) with suspected Avipoxvirus infections based on the presence of pox-like lesions. Mixed genotype infections have not previously been documented in Hawaìi but were observed in two individuals in this study.


We anticipate that this method will be applicable to other closely related strains of Avipoxvirus and will become an important and useful tool in global studies of the epidemiology of Avipoxvirus.

Study Area

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Taqman Real-Time PCR Detects Avipoxvirus DNA in Blood of Hawaìi `Amakihi (Hemignathus virens)
Series title PLoS ONE
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0010745
Edition e10745
Volume 5
Issue 5
Year Published 2010
Language English
Publisher PLoS
Contributing office(s) Pacific Island Ecosystems Research Center
Description 6 p.
First page 1
Last page 6
Country Ecuador, Spain, United States
State Hawaii
Other Geospatial Canary Islands, Galapagos Islands
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details