Porcine astroviruses (PAstVs) are small RNA viruses associated with gastroenteritis. The capsid polyprotein of PAstVs, human (HAstVs) and feline (FAstVs) AstVs has a high similarity at the N-terminus before residue 415. Previous results showed the cross-detection of PAstVs and HAstVs from diarrheal samples using a commercial ELISA test that uses a monoclonal antibody to capture HAstVs, suggesting the existence of common immunoreactive epitopes between these two virus types. In this study, we seeked immunoreactive peptides located in the PAstV capsid that may be potentially used for their specific detection. The variability and hydrophobicity of a short fragment of 132 amino acids were analyzed using several capsid sequences of PAstVs and HAstVs. Peptides TATL, SLNP and IDIV were selected, synthesized and inoculated into rabbits. Pre- and hyperimmune sera were collected and their reactivity was examined by immunoassay and immunofluorescence against two wild-type strains of PAstV adapted to grow in cell culture, observing reactivity in two of the sera. Finally, the possible cross-reactivity of the sera against HAstVs was partially ruled out using HAstV8. Our data suggest that TATLGTIGSNSSGKTELEAC and IDIVVGKAATFNLKASDLSGP peptides represent immunoreactive regions useful for the specific detection of PAstVs.

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