Author(s): Bichaud L, de Lamballerie X, Alkan C, Izri A, Gould EA,
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Abstract The discovery and development of methods for isolation, characterisation and taxonomy of viruses represents an important milestone in the study, treatment and control of virus diseases during the 20th century. Indeed, by the late-1950s, it was becoming common belief that most human and veterinary pathogenic viruses had been discovered. However, at that time, knowledge of the impact of improved commercial transportation, urbanisation and deforestation, on disease emergence, was in its infancy. From the late 1960s onwards viruses, such as hepatitis virus (A, B and C) hantavirus, HIV, Marburg virus, Ebola virus and many others began to emerge and it became apparent that the world was changing, at least in terms of virus epidemiology, largely due to the influence of anthropological activities. Subsequently, with the improvement of molecular biotechnologies, for amplification of viral RNA, genome sequencing and proteomic analysis the arsenal of available tools for virus discovery and genetic characterization opened up new and exciting possibilities for virological discovery. Many recently identified but "unclassified" viruses are now being allocated to existing genera or families based on whole genome sequencing, bioinformatic and phylogenetic analysis. New species, genera and families are also being created following the guidelines of the International Committee for the Taxonomy of Viruses. Many of these newly discovered viruses are vectored by arthropods (arboviruses) and possess an RNA genome. This brief review will focus largely on the discovery of new arthropod-borne viruses. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Microb Pathog
and referenced in Journal of Infectious Diseases and Diagnosis