Nov 25, 2013

Emergence of SARS-CoV-2 through Recombination and Strong Purifying Selection

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Dan Siegal-GaskinsFeng Gao

Abstract

COVID-19 has become a global pandemic caused by a novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Understanding the origins of SARS-CoV-2 is critical for deterring future zoonosis and for drug discovery and vaccine development. We show evidence of strong purifying selection around the receptor binding motif (RBM) in the spike gene and in other genes among bat, pangolin and human coronaviruses, indicating similar strong evolutionary constraints in different host species. We also demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2's entire RBM was introduced through recombination with coronaviruses from pangolins, possibly a critical step in the evolution of SARS-CoV-2's ability to infect humans. Similar purifying selection in different host species and frequent recombination among coronaviruses suggest a common evolutionary mechanism that could lead to new emerging human coronaviruses.

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Mentioned in this Paper

In Vivo
Exploration With a Probe
Solocyte
Housekeeping: -: Point in Time: ^Patient: -
Discipline
Genes
DNA-Directed RNA Polymerase
RNA Polymerase Assembly Pathway
Transcription, Genetic
Environment

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