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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 84:179-194 (2009)  -  DOI:

Phylogenetic relationships in the family Alloherpesviridae

Thomas B. Waltzek1, Garry O. Kelley1,4, Michael E. Alfaro2, Tomofumi Kurobe1, Andrew J. Davison3, Ronald P. Hedrick1,*

1Department of Medicine and Epidemiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, California 95616, USA
2School of Biological Sciences, Washington State University, Pullman, Washington 99164, USA
3MRC Virology Unit, Institute of Virology, University of Glasgow, Church Street, Glasgow G11 5JR, UK
4Present address: California Department of Fish and Game, Fish Health Laboratory, 2111 Nimbus Road, Rancho Cordova, California 95670, USA
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: Phylogenetic relationships among herpesviruses (HVs) of mammals, birds, and reptiles have been studied extensively, whereas those among other HVs are relatively unexplored. We have reconstructed the phylogenetic relationships among 13 fish and amphibian HVs using maximum likelihood and Bayesian analyses of amino acid sequences predicted from parts of the DNA polymerase and terminase genes. The relationships among 6 of these viruses were confirmed using the partial DNA polymerase data plus the complete sequences of the terminase, helicase, and triplex protein genes; the position of these viruses among all other sequenced HVs was also investigated using the complete terminase gene. The results established the monophyly of the fish and amphibian HVs (Alloherpesviridae) separate from the HVs of mammals, birds, and reptiles (Herpesviridae) and the single recognized HV of bivalve mollusks (Malacoherpesviridae) in the order Herpesvirales. Two major clades in the family Alloherpesviridae were recognized: one consisting of viruses from cyprinid and anguillid hosts and the other of viruses from ictalurid, salmonid, acipenserid, and ranid hosts. A comparison of virus and host phylogenies suggested that closely related HVs in this family may have coevolved with their hosts, whereas significant codiversification was not apparent for the more distantly related viruses.

KEY WORDS: Alloherpesviridae · Fish herpesviruses · Frog herpesviruses · Phylogeny · Coevolution· DNA polymerase · Terminase

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Cite this article as: Waltzek TB, Kelley GO, Alfaro ME, Kurobe T, Davison AJ, Hedrick RP (2009) Phylogenetic relationships in the family Alloherpesviridae. Dis Aquat Org 84:179-194.

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