Are RNA Viruses Adapting or Merely Changing?

  title={Are RNA Viruses Adapting or Merely Changing?},
  author={M. Sala and Simon Wain-Hobson},
  journal={Journal of Molecular Evolution},
RNA viruses and retroviruses fix substitutions approximately 1 million-fold faster than their hosts. This diversification could represent an inevitable drift under purifying selection, the majority of substitutions being phenotypically neutral. The alternative is to suppose that most fixed mutations are beneficial to the virus, allowing it to keep ahead of the host and/or host population. Here, relative sequence diversification of different proteins encoded by viral genomes is found to be… CONTINUE READING


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