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Publication . Article . 2020

The origins and genomic diversity of American Civil War Era smallpox vaccine strains

Ana T. Duggan; Jennifer Klunk; Ashleigh F. Porter; Anna Dhody; Robert Hicks; Geoffrey L. Smith; Margaret Humphreys; +15 Authors
Open Access
Published: 20 Jul 2020 Journal: Genome Biology, volume 21 (eissn: 1474-760X, Copyright policy )
Publisher: Springer Science and Business Media LLC
Country: United Kingdom
Abstract

AbstractVaccination has transformed public health, most notably including the eradication of smallpox. Despite its profound historical importance, little is known of the origins and diversity of the viruses used in smallpox vaccination. Prior to the twentieth century, the method, source and origin of smallpox vaccinations remained unstandardised and opaque. We reconstruct and analyse viral vaccine genomes associated with smallpox vaccination from historical artefacts. Significantly, we recover viral molecules through non-destructive sampling of historical materials lacking signs of biological residues. We use the authenticated ancient genomes to reveal the evolutionary relationships of smallpox vaccination viruses within the poxviruses as a whole.

Subjects by Vocabulary

Microsoft Academic Graph classification: Smallpox vaccine Public health medicine.medical_specialty medicine Smallpox medicine.disease Diversity (politics) media_common.quotation_subject media_common Ancient DNA Vaccination Biology Viral Vaccine Spanish Civil War Ethnology

Medical Subject Headings: viruses complex mixtures virus diseases

Library of Congress Subject Headings: lcsh:Biology (General) lcsh:QH301-705.5 lcsh:Genetics lcsh:QH426-470

Subjects

Humans, Vaccinia virus, Smallpox Vaccine, Vaccination, Genome, Viral, History, 19th Century, American Civil War, Genetic Variation, Metagenome, Smallpox, Ancient DNA, Humans, Vaccinia virus, Smallpox Vaccine, Vaccination, Genome, Viral, History, 19th Century, American Civil War, Genetic Variation, Metagenome, Short Report

Related Organizations
Funded by
SSHRC
Project
  • Funder: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC)
,
WT
Project
  • Funder: Wellcome Trust (WT)
,
NSERC
Project
  • Funder: Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)
,
CIHR
Project
  • Funder: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
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