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© Research
Publication : Nature communications

Chimeric viruses blur the borders between the major groups of eukaryotic single-stranded DNA viruses

Scientific Fields
Diseases
Organisms
Applications
Technique

Published in Nature communications - 01 Jan 2013

Roux S, Enault F, Bronner G, Vaulot D, Forterre P, Krupovic M

Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 24193254

Nat Commun 2013;4:2700

Metagenomic studies have uncovered an astonishing diversity of ssDNA viruses encoding replication proteins (Reps) related to those of eukaryotic Circoviridae, Geminiviridae or Nanoviridae; however, exact evolutionary relationships among these viruses remain obscure. Recently, a unique chimeric virus (CHIV) genome, which has apparently emerged via recombination between ssRNA and ssDNA viruses, has been discovered. Here we report on the assembly of 13 new CHIV genomes recovered from various environments. Our results indicate a single event of capsid protein (CP) gene capture from an RNA virus in the history of this virus group. The domestication of the CP gene was followed by an unprecedented recurrent replacement of the Rep genes in CHIVs with distant counterparts from diverse ssDNA viruses. We suggest that parasitic and symbiotic interactions between unicellular eukaryotes were central for the emergence of CHIVs and that such turbulent evolution was primarily dictated by incongruence between the CP and Rep proteins.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24193254