Characterization of a Novel African Swine Fever Virus p72 Genotype II from Nigeria
African swine fever (ASF) is a high-consequence transboundary hemorrhagic fever of swine. It continues to spread across the globe causing socio-economic issues and threatening food security and biodiversity. In 2020, Nigeria reported a major ASF outbreak, killing close to half a million pigs. Based on the partial sequences of the genes B646L (p72) and E183L (p54), the virus responsible for the outbreak was identified as an African swine fever virus (ASFV) p72 genotype II. Here, we report further characterization of ASFV RV502, one of the isolates obtained during the outbreak. The whole genome sequence of this virus revealed a deletion of 6535 bp between the nucleotide positions 11,760–18,295 of the genome, and an apparent reverse complement duplication of the 5′ end of the genome at the 3′ end. Phylogenetically, ASFV RV502 clustered together with ASFV MAL/19/Karonga and ASFV Tanzania/Rukwa/2017/1 suggesting that the virus responsible for the 2020 outbreak in Nigeria has a South-eastern African origin.