The identification and genetic characteristics of Quang Binh virus from field-captured Culex tritaeniorhynchus (Diptera: Culicidae) from Guizhou Province, China



Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Publication Title

Parasites and Vectors






Culex tritaeniorhynchus, Flavivirus, Genome, Guizhou Province, Insect-specific flaviviruses, Mosquito, Quang Binh virus


Background: Mosquitoes carry a variety of viruses that can cause disease in humans, animals and livestock. Surveys for viruses carried by wild mosquitoes can significantly contribute to surveillance efforts and early detection systems. In addition to mosquito-borne viruses, mosquitoes harbor many insect-specific viruses (ISVs). Quang Binh virus (QBV) is one such example, categorized as an ISV within the Flavivirus genus (family Flaviviridae). QBV has been specifically documented in Vietnam and China, with reports limited to several mosquito species. Methods: The homogenate obtained from female mosquitoes was cultured on C6/36 (Aedes albopictus) and BHK-21 (baby hamster kidney) cell lines. Positive cultures were identified by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT‒PCR) with taxon- or species-specific primers. Next-generation sequencing was employed to sequence the complete genomes of the identified positive samples. Subsequently, phylogenetic, gene homology, molecular evolutionary and genetic variation analyses were conducted. Result: In 2021, a total of 32,177 adult female mosquitoes were collected from 15 counties in Guizhou Province, China. The predominant mosquito species identified were Culex tritaeniorhynchus, Armigeres subalbatus and Anopheles sinensis. Among the collected mosquitoes, three positive cultures were obtained from Cx. tritaeniorhynchus pools, revealing the presence of Quang Binh virus (QBV) RNA sequences. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the three Guizhou isolates, along with the prototype isolate from Vietnam, formed distinct branches. These branches were primarily closely related to other QBV isolates reported in China. Comparative analysis revealed a high degree of nucleotide and amino acid homology between the Guizhou isolates and both Vietnamese and other indigenous Chinese isolates. Additionally, nonsynonymous single-nucleotide variants (SNVs) were observed in these strains compared to the QBV prototype strain. Conclusion: This study represents the first report of QBV presences in Cx. tritaeniorhynchus mosquitoes in Guizhou Province, China. Phylogenetic tree analysis showed that the three Guizhou isolates were most closely related to the QBV genes found in China. In addition, the study of the genetic characteristics and variation of this virus provided a deeper understanding of QBV and enriched the baseline data of these insect-specific flaviviruses (ISFVs). Graphical Abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

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