Viral Evolution & General Virology

As indicated by the U.S. Community for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Respiratory syncytial infection (RSV) is the basic reason for bronchiolitis or pneumonia in the youngsters under one year of age in the United States. Every year 75,000 to 125,000 kids are hospitalized because of RSV diseases.

An alphavirus belongs to the group IV Togaviridae family of viruses as per the arrangement of grouping taking into account viral genome organization presented by David Baltimore. Filoviruses belong to a virus family called Filoviridae and can cause severe hemorrhagic fever in humans and nonhuman primates. Picornaviruses are non-wrapped, positive-stranded RNA viruses with an icosahedral capsid. West Nile virus is a mosquito-borne zoonotic arbovirus belonging to the genus Flavivirus in the family Flaviviridae.

Viral evolution is a subfield of evolutionary biology and virology that is specifically concerned with the evolution of viruses. Many viruses, in particular RNA viruses, have short generation times and relatively high mutation rates (on the order of one point mutation or more per genome per round of replication for RNA viruses). This elevated mutation rate, when combined with natural selection, allows viruses to quickly adapt to changes in their host environment.
 
Viral evolution is an important aspect of the epidemiology of viral diseases such as influenza (influenza virus), AIDS (HIV), and hepatitis (e.g. HCV). The rapidity of viral mutation also causes problems in the development of successful vaccines and antiviral drugs, as resistant mutations often appear within weeks or months after the beginning of the treatment. One of the main theoretical models to study viral evolution is the quasispecies model, as the viral quasispecies.
  • Viral Genomics and Proteomics
  • Cellular Factors Affecting Viral Replication and Pathogenicity
  • Viral Tropism and Transmission
  • Viral Replication Cycle

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