Oct 24, 2018

Origins and Evolution of the Global RNA Virome

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Valerian V DoljaEugene V Koonin


Viruses with RNA genomes dominate the eukaryotic virome, reaching enormous diversity in animals and plants. The recent advances of metaviromics prompted us to perform a detailed phylogenomic reconstruction of the evolution of the dramatically expanded global RNA virome. The only universal gene among RNA viruses is the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp). We developed an iterative computational procedure that alternates the RdRp phylogenetic tree construction with refinement of the underlying multiple sequence alignments. The resulting tree encompasses 4,617 RNA virus RdRps and consists of 5 major branches, 2 of which include positive-sense RNA viruses, 1 is a mix of positive-sense (+) RNA and double-stranded (ds) RNA viruses, and 2 consist of dsRNA and negative-sense (-) RNA viruses, respectively. This tree topology implies that dsRNA viruses evolved from +RNA viruses on at least two independent occasions, whereas -RNA viruses evolved from dsRNA viruses. Reconstruction of RNA virus evolution using the RdRp tree as the scaffold suggests that the last common ancestors of the major branches of +RNA viruses encoded only the RdRp and a single jelly-roll capsid protein. Subsequent evolution involved independent capture of additional ...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

RNA-directed RNA Polymerase Activity
Trees (plant)
RNA Viruses
RNA, Double-Stranded
Reconstructive Surgical Procedures
Patient Transfer
Virus Replication

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