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Clonality and intracellular polyploidy in virus evolution and pathogenesis

AutorPerales, Celia ; Moreno, Elena ; Domingo, Esteban
Fecha de publicación21-jul-2015
CitaciónPROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 112(29): 8887-8892 (2015)
ResumenIn the present article we examine clonality in virus evolution. Most viruses retain an active recombination machinery as a potential means to initiate new levels of genetic exploration that go beyond those attainable solely by point mutations. However, despite abundant recombination that may be linked to molecular events essential for genome replication, herein we provide evidence that generation of recombinants with altered biological properties is not essential for the completion of the replication cycles of viruses, and that viral lineages (near-clades) can be defined. We distinguish mechanistically active but inconsequential recombination from evolutionarily relevant recombination, illustrated by episodes in the field and during experimental evolution. In the field, recombination has been at the origin of new viral pathogens, and has conferred fitness advantages to some viruses once the parental viruses have attained a sufficient degree of diversification by point mutations. In the laboratory, recombination mediated a salient genome segmentation of foot-and-mouth disease virus, an important animal pathogen whose genome in nature has always been characterized as unsegmented. We propose a model of continuous mutation and recombination, with punctuated, biologically relevant recombination events for the survival of viruses, both as disease agents and as promoters of cellular evolution. Thus, clonality is the standard evolutionary mode for viruses because recombination is largely inconsequential, since the decisive events for virus replication and survival are not dependent on the exchange of genetic material and formation of recombinant (mosaic) genomes.
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/124263
DOI10.1073/pnas.1501715112
Identificadoresdoi: 10.1073/pnas.1501715112
issn: 1091-6490
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