Adaptive strategies of multipartite viruses
November 1, 2016 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm
Klaus Room 1116 West
Spanish National Centre for Biotechnology (CSIC)
School of Physics Soft Condensed Matter & Physics of Living Systems: Prof. Susanna Manrubia, Spanish National Centre for Biotechnology (CSIC)
Viruses count amongst the most amazing organisms on Earth regarding their evolutionary and adaptive abilities. They resort to several different forms of coding information in their genomes; together with an array of different mutational mechanisms, they have succeeded in infecting all cellular organisms and in escaping any antiviral strategy (natural or artificial). We will present and discuss a puzzling example of viral adaptive strategy: viruses with multipartite genomes. Multipartite viruses possess fragmented genomes with fragments encapsidated in independent viral particles. This demands co-infection of cells to complete the viral cycle, a condition that poses severe restrictions on the number of viral particles infecting single cells. This kind of viruses infects mostly plants and represents about 16% of all viral species described. As of today, the adaptive advantage of multipartition in front of complete or fragmented genomes encapsidated in a single particle remains undisclosed.