Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Expansion of the Metazoan Virosphere: Progress, Pitfalls, and Prospects

Version 1 : Received: 18 May 2018 / Approved: 21 May 2018 / Online: 21 May 2018 (13:18:23 CEST)

How to cite: Obbard, D.J. Expansion of the Metazoan Virosphere: Progress, Pitfalls, and Prospects. Preprints 2018, 2018050278 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201805.0278.v1). Obbard, D.J. Expansion of the Metazoan Virosphere: Progress, Pitfalls, and Prospects. Preprints 2018, 2018050278 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201805.0278.v1).

Abstract

Metagenomic sequencing has led to a recent and rapid expansion in the animal virome. It has uncovered a multitude of new virus lineages from under-sampled host lineages, including many that break up long branches among previously known clades, and many with genomes that display unexpected sizes and structures. Although there are challenges to inferring the existence of a virus from a virus-like sequence, the analysis of nucleic acid (including small RNAs) and sequence data can give us considerable confidence in the absence of an isolate. As a consequence, this period of ‘molecular natural history’ is helping to reshape our views of deep virus evolution. Nevertheless, there is a limit to what metagenomic discovery alone can tell us, and some open questions will require experimental isolates.

Supplementary and Associated Material

Subject Areas

virus; metagenomic; RNAi; host-range; picornavirales; drosophila

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