We performed viral metagenomics analysis of Japanese quail affected with enteritis to elucidate the viral etiology. Metagenomics generated 21,066,442 sequence reads via high-throughput sequencing, with a mean length of 136 nt. Enrichment in viral sequences suggested that at least three viruses were present in quail samples. Coronavirus and picornavirus were identified and are known as pathogens causing quail enteritis that match the observed morphology. Abundant reads of coronavirus from quail samples yielded four fragment sequences exhibiting six genomes of avian coronavirus. Sequence analysis showed that this quail coronavirus was related to turkey coronavirus and chicken infectious bronchitis virus. Quail picornavirus 8177 bp in size was identified and was similar to the QPV1/HUN/01 virus detected in quails without clinical symptoms in Hungary with 84.6% nucleotide and 94.6% amino acid identity. Our results are useful for understanding the genetic diversity of quail viruses. Further studies must be performed to determine whether quail coronavirus and quail picornavirus are pathogens of the digestive tract of quails.
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Vol. 65 • No. 1