Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 30935049
Link to DOI – E31210.3390/v11040312
Viruses 2019 03; 11(4):
The history of giant viruses began in 2003 with the identification of Acanthamoeba polyphaga mimivirus. Since then, giant viruses of amoeba enlightened an unknown part of the viral world, and every discovery and characterization of a new giant virus modifies our perception of the virosphere. This notably includes their exceptional virion sizes from 200 nm to 2 µm and their genomic complexity with length, number of genes, and functions such as translational components never seen before. Even more surprising, Mimivirus possesses a unique mobilome composed of virophages, transpovirons, and a defense system against virophages named Mimivirus virophage resistance element (MIMIVIRE). From the discovery and isolation of new giant viruses to their possible roles in humans, this review shows the active contribution of the University Hospital Institute (IHU) Mediterranee Infection to the growing knowledge of the giant viruses’ field.