Common origin of four diverse families of large eukaryotic DNA viruses.
ABSTRACT: Comparative analysis of the protein sequences encoded in the genomes of three families of large DNA viruses that replicate, completely or partly, in the cytoplasm of eukaryotic cells (poxviruses, asfarviruses, and iridoviruses) and phycodnaviruses that replicate in the nucleus reveals 9 genes that are shared by all of these viruses and 22 more genes that are present in at least three of the four compared viral families. Although orthologous proteins from different viral families typically show weak sequence similarity, because of which some of them have not been identified previously, at least five of the conserved genes appear to be synapomorphies (shared derived characters) that unite these four viral families, to the exclusion of all other known viruses and cellular life forms. Cladistic analysis with the genes shared by at least two viral families as evolutionary characters supports the monophyly of poxviruses, asfarviruses, iridoviruses, and phycodnaviruses. The results of genome comparison allow a tentative reconstruction of the ancestral viral genome and suggest that the common ancestor of all of these viral families was a nucleocytoplasmic virus with an icosahedral capsid, which encoded complex systems for DNA replication and transcription, a redox protein involved in disulfide bond formation in virion membrane proteins, and probably inhibitors of apoptosis. The conservation of the disulfide-oxidoreductase, a major capsid protein, and two virion membrane proteins indicates that the odd-shaped virions of poxviruses have evolved from the more common icosahedral virion seen in asfarviruses, iridoviruses, and phycodnaviruses.
Project description:We report an in-depth computational study of the protein sequences and structures of the superfamily of archaeo-eukaryotic primases (AEPs). This analysis greatly expands the range of diversity of the AEPs and reveals the unique active site shared by all members of this superfamily. In particular, it is shown that eukaryotic nucleo-cytoplasmic large DNA viruses, including poxviruses, asfarviruses, iridoviruses, phycodnaviruses and the mimivirus, encode AEPs of a distinct family, which also includes the herpesvirus primases whose relationship to AEPs has not been recognized previously. Many eukaryotic genomes, including chordates and plants, encode previously uncharacterized homologs of these predicted viral primases, which might be involved in novel DNA repair pathways. At a deeper level of evolutionary connections, structural comparisons indicate that AEPs, the nucleases involved in the initiation of rolling circle replication in plasmids and viruses, and origin-binding domains of papilloma and polyoma viruses evolved from a common ancestral protein that might have been involved in a protein-priming mechanism of initiation of DNA replication. Contextual analysis of multidomain protein architectures and gene neighborhoods in prokaryotes and viruses reveals remarkable parallels between AEPs and the unrelated DnaG-type primases, in particular, tight associations with the same repertoire of helicases. These observations point to a functional equivalence of the two classes of primases, which seem to have repeatedly displaced each other in various extrachromosomal replicons.
Project description:Viruses with genomes greater than 300 kb and up to 1200 kb are being discovered with increasing frequency. These large viruses (often called giruses) can encode up to 900 proteins and also many tRNAs. Consequently, these viruses have more protein-encoding genes than many bacteria, and the concept of small particle/small genome that once defined viruses is no longer valid. Giruses infect bacteria and animals although most of the recently discovered ones infect protists. Thus, genome gigantism is not restricted to a specific host or phylogenetic clade. To date, most of the giruses are associated with aqueous environments. Many of these large viruses (phycodnaviruses and Mimiviruses) probably have a common evolutionary ancestor with the poxviruses, iridoviruses, asfarviruses, ascoviruses, and a recently discovered Marseillevirus. One issue that is perhaps not appreciated by the microbiology community is that large viruses, even ones classified in the same family, can differ significantly in morphology, lifestyle, and genome structure. This review focuses on some of these differences than on extensive details about individual viruses.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The ascovirus, DpAV4a (family Ascoviridae), is a symbiotic virus that markedly increases the fitness of its vector, the parasitic ichneumonid wasp, Diadromus puchellus, by increasing survival of wasp eggs and larvae in their lepidopteran host, Acrolepiopsis assectella. Previous phylogenetic studies have indicated that DpAV4a is related to the pathogenic ascoviruses, such as the Spodoptera frugiperda ascovirus 1a (SfAV1a) and the lepidopteran iridovirus (family Iridoviridae), Chilo iridescent virus (CIV), and is also likely related to the ancestral source of certain ichnoviruses (family Polydnaviridae). METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:To clarify the evolutionary relationships of these large double-stranded DNA viruses, we sequenced the genome of DpAV4a and undertook phylogenetic analyses of the above viruses and others, including iridoviruses pathogenic to vertebrates. The DpAV4a genome consisted of 119,343 bp and contained at least 119 open reading frames (ORFs), the analysis of which confirmed the relatedness of this virus to iridoviruses and other ascoviruses. CONCLUSIONS:Analyses of core DpAV4a genes confirmed that ascoviruses and iridoviruses are evolutionary related. Nevertheless, our results suggested that the symbiotic DpAV4a had a separate origin in the iridoviruses from the pathogenic ascoviruses, and that these two types shared parallel evolutionary paths, which converged with respect to virion structure (icosahedral to bacilliform), genome configuration (linear to circular), and cytopathology (plasmalemma blebbing to virion-containing vesicles). Our analyses also revealed that DpAV4a shared more core genes with CIV than with other ascoviruses and iridoviruses, providing additional evidence that DpAV4a represents a separate lineage. Given the differences in the biology of the various iridoviruses and ascoviruses studied, these results provide an interesting model for how viruses of different families evolved from one another.
Project description:The largest known DNA viruses infect Acanthamoeba and belong to two markedly different families. The Megaviridae exhibit pseudo-icosahedral virions up to 0.7 μm in diameter and adenine-thymine (AT)-rich genomes of up to 1.25 Mb encoding a thousand proteins. Like their Mimivirus prototype discovered 10 y ago, they entirely replicate within cytoplasmic virion factories. In contrast, the recently discovered Pandoraviruses exhibit larger amphora-shaped virions 1 μm in length and guanine-cytosine-rich genomes up to 2.8 Mb long encoding up to 2,500 proteins. Their replication involves the host nucleus. Whereas the Megaviridae share some general features with the previously described icosahedral large DNA viruses, the Pandoraviruses appear unrelated to them. Here we report the discovery of a third type of giant virus combining an even larger pandoravirus-like particle 1.5 μm in length with a surprisingly smaller 600 kb AT-rich genome, a gene content more similar to Iridoviruses and Marseillevirus, and a fully cytoplasmic replication reminiscent of the Megaviridae. This suggests that pandoravirus-like particles may be associated with a variety of virus families more diverse than previously envisioned. This giant virus, named Pithovirus sibericum, was isolated from a >30,000-y-old radiocarbon-dated sample when we initiated a survey of the virome of Siberian permafrost. The revival of such an ancestral amoeba-infecting virus used as a safe indicator of the possible presence of pathogenic DNA viruses, suggests that the thawing of permafrost either from global warming or industrial exploitation of circumpolar regions might not be exempt from future threats to human or animal health.
Project description:To date, the microbiome, as well as the virome of the Croatian populations of bats, was unknown. Here, we present the results of the first viral metagenomic analysis of guano, feces and saliva (oral swabs) of seven bat species (Myotis myotis, Miniopterus schreibersii, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum, Eptesicus serotinus, Myotis blythii, Myotis nattereri and Myotis emarginatus) conducted in Mediterranean and continental Croatia. Viral nucleic acids were extracted from sample pools, and analyzed using Illumina sequencing. The presence of 63 different viral families representing all seven Baltimore groups were confirmed, most commonly insect viruses likely reflecting the diet of insectivorous bats. Virome compositions of our samples were largely impacted by the sample type: invertebrate-infecting viruses were most frequently found in feces, bacterial viruses in guano, whereas vertebrate-infecting viruses were most common in swabs. Most vertebrate-infecting virus sequences were assigned to retroviruses, parvoviruses, iridoviruses, and poxviruses. We further report the complete genome sequence of a novel adeno-associated virus, densovirus and a near complete length genome sequence of a novel iflavirus. Additionally, one of the most interesting findings in this study was the difference in viromes between two contrasting habitats, the continental and Mediterranean Croatia.
Project description:Panulirus argus virus 1 (PaV1) is the only known virus infecting the Caribbean spiny lobster (Panulirus argus) from the Caribbean Sea. Recently, related viruses, Dikerogammarus haemobaphes virus 1 (DhV1) and Carcinus maenas virus 1 (CmV1), have been detected in the demon shrimp (Dikerogammarus haemobaphes) and the European shore crab (Carcinus maenas), respectively, from sites in the United Kingdom. The virion morphology of these crustacean viruses is similar to that of iridoviruses. However, unlike iridoviruses and other nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses (NCLDVs), these viruses complete their morphogenesis in the host cell nucleus rather than in the cytoplasm. To date, these crustacean viruses have remained unclassified due to a lack of genomic data. Using an Illumina MiSeq sequencer, we sequenced the complete genomes of PaV1, CmV1, and DhV1. Comparative genome analysis shows that these crustacean virus genomes encode the 10 hallmark proteins previously described for the NCLDVs of eukaryotes, strongly suggesting that they are members of this group. With a size range of 70 to 74 kb, these are the smallest NCLDV genomes identified to date. Extensive gene loss, divergence of gene sequences, and the accumulation of low-complexity sequences reflect the extreme degradation of the genomes of these "minimal" NCLDVs rather than any direct relationship with the NCLDV ancestor. Phylogenomic analysis supports the classification of these crustacean viruses as a distinct family, "Mininucleoviridae," within the pitho-irido-Marseille branch of the NCLDVs.IMPORTANCE Recent genomic and metagenomic studies have led to a dramatic expansion of the known diversity of nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses (NCLDVs) of eukaryotes, which include giant viruses of protists and important pathogens of vertebrates, such as poxviruses. However, the characterization of viruses from nonmodel hosts still lags behind. We sequenced the complete genomes of three viruses infecting crustaceans, the Caribbean spiny lobster, demon shrimp, and European shore crab. These viruses have the smallest genomes among the known NCLDVs, with losses of many core genes, some of which are shared with iridoviruses. The deterioration of the transcription apparatus is compatible with microscopic and ultrastructural observations indicating that these viruses replicate in the nucleus of infected cells rather than in the cytoplasm. Phylogenomic analysis indicates that these viruses are sufficiently distinct from all other NCLDVs to justify the creation of a separate family, for which we propose the name "Mininucleoviridae" (i.e., small viruses reproducing in the cell nucleus).
Project description:The morphogenesis of poxviruses such as vaccinia virus (VACV) sees the virion shape mature from spherical to brick-shaped. Trimeric capsomers of the VACV D13 protein form a transitory, stabilizing lattice on the surface of the initial spherical immature virus particle. The crystal structure of D13 reveals that this major scaffolding protein comprises a double ? barrel "jelly-roll" subunit arranged as pseudo-hexagonal trimers. These structural features are characteristic of the major capsid proteins of a lineage of large icosahedral double-stranded DNA viruses including human adenovirus and the bacteriophages PRD1 and PM2. Structure-based phylogenetic analysis confirms that VACV belongs to this lineage, suggesting that (analogously to higher organism embryogenesis) early poxvirus morphogenesis reflects their evolution from a lineage of viruses sharing a common icosahedral ancestor.
Project description:Icosahedral nontailed double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) viruses are present in all three domains of life, leading to speculation about a common viral ancestor that predates the divergence of Eukarya, Bacteria, and Archaea. This suggestion is supported by the shared general architecture of this group of viruses and the common fold of their major capsid protein. However, limited information on the diversity and replication of archaeal viruses, in general, has hampered further analysis. Sulfolobus turreted icosahedral virus (STIV), isolated from a hot spring in Yellowstone National Park, was the first icosahedral virus with an archaeal host to be described. Here we present a detailed characterization of the components forming this unusual virus. Using a proteomics-based approach, we identified nine viral and two host proteins from purified STIV particles. Interestingly, one of the viral proteins originates from a reading frame lacking a consensus start site. The major capsid protein (B345) was found to be glycosylated, implying a strong similarity to proteins from other dsDNA viruses. Sequence analysis and structural predication of virion-associated viral proteins suggest that they may have roles in DNA packaging, penton formation, and protein-protein interaction. The presence of an internal lipid layer containing acidic tetraether lipids has also been confirmed. The previously presented structural models in conjunction with the protein, lipid, and carbohydrate information reported here reveal that STIV is strikingly similar to viruses associated with the Bacteria and Eukarya domains of life, further strengthening the hypothesis for a common ancestor of this group of dsDNA viruses from all domains of life.
Project description:Orf virus, the prototype parapoxvirus, is responsible for contagious ecthyma in sheep and goats. The central region of the viral genome codes for proteins highly conserved among vertebrate poxviruses and which are frequently essential for viral proliferation. Analysis of the recently published genome sequence of orf virus revealed that among such essential proteins, the protein orfv075 is an orthologue of D13, the rifampin resistance gene product critical for vaccinia virus morphogenesis. Previous studies showed that D13, arranged as "spicules," is necessary for the formation of vaccinia virus immature virions, a mandatory intermediate in viral maturation. We have determined the three-dimensional structure of recombinant orfv075 at approximately 25-A resolution by electron microscopy of two-dimensional crystals. orfv075 organizes as trimers with a tripod-like main body and a propeller-like smaller domain. The molecular envelope of orfv075 shows unexpectedly good agreement to that of a distant homologue, VP54, the major capsid protein of Paramecium bursaria Chlorella virus type 1. Our structural analysis suggests that orfv075 belongs in the double-barreled capsid protein family found in many double-stranded DNA icosahedral viruses and supports the hypothesis that the nonicosahedral poxviruses and the large icosahedral DNA viruses are evolutionarily related.
Project description:The cellular endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) pathway is a multifunctional pathway involved in cell physiological activities. While the majority of RNA viruses bearing L-domains are known to hijack the ESCRT pathway to complete the budding process, the budding of large and complex enveloped DNA viruses, especially iridoviruses, has been rarely investigated. In the present study, we use the tiger frog virus (TFV) as a model to investigate whether iridoviruses are released from host cells through the ESCRT pathway. Inhibition of class E proteins and auxiliary proteins (VPS4A, VPS4B, Tsg101, Alix, and Nedd4.1) reduces extracellular virion production, which preliminarily indicates that the ESCRT pathway is involved in TFV release. The respective interactions of TFV VP031L, VP065L, VP093L with Alix, Tsg101, Nedd4 suggest the underlying molecular mechanism by which TFV gets access to the ESCRT pathway. Co-depletion of Alix, Tsg101, and Nedd4.1 induces a significant reduction in extracellular virion production, which implies the functional redundancy of host factors in TFV budding. Those results are first observation that iridovirus gains access to ESCRT pathway through three ways of interactions between viral proteins and host proteins. Our study provides a better understanding of the budding mechanism of enveloped DNA viruses.