Classify viruses — the gain is worth the pain

  title={Classify viruses — the gain is worth the pain},
  author={Jens H. Kuhn and Yuri I. Wolf and Mart Krupovic and Yong-Zhen Zhang and Piet Maes and Valerian V. Dolja and Eugene V. Koonin},
Viruses hold solutions to a lot of problems, so let’s fund and reward cataloguing, urge Jens H. Kuhn and colleagues.Viruses hold solutions to a lot of problems, so let’s fund and reward cataloguing, urge Jens H. Kuhn and colleagues. 

The new scope of virus taxonomy: partitioning the virosphere into 15 hierarchical ranks

  • Alexander E. Mart Arcady Andrew M. Stuart G. Arvind Michael Gorbalenya Krupovic Mushegian Kropinski Siddell VaA. Gorbalenya J. Kuhn
  • Biology
    Nature Microbiology
  • 2020
A new, expanded virus classification scheme with 15 ranks that closely aligns with the Linnaean taxonomic system and better encompasses viral diversity is described.

Women in the European Virus Bioinformatics Center

The work of the EVBC is showcased and the achievements of some outstanding women experts in virology and viral bioinformatics are highlighted, to bring more talented women into research and keep them there.

Virus Taxonomy

  • J. Kuhn
  • Biology
    Reference Module in Life Sciences
  • 2020

Towards an integrative view of virus phenotypes.

This work presents a framework for categorizing virus phenotypes that encompasses both virion and virocell stages and considers functional and performance traits of viruses in the context of fitness.

The Baltimore Classification of Viruses 50 Years Later: How Does It Stand in the Light of Virus Evolution?

The status of the Baltimore classes is examined and their links with the global ecology and biology of the respective viruses are explored and why many logically admissible expression-replication schemes do not appear to be realized in nature are discussed.

Changes to virus taxonomy and the Statutes ratified by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (2020)

ICTV has approved a proposal that extends the previously established realm Riboviria to encompass nearly all RNA viruses and reverse-transcribing viruses, and approved three separate proposals to establish three realms for viruses with DNA genomes.

The Plant Negative-Sense RNA Virosphere: Virus Discovery Through New Eyes

The application of HTS approaches to uncover novel plant viruses with a focus on the negative-sense, single-stranded RNA virosphere is considered, providing an essential framework for improved taxonomic classification of plant NSR viruses as part of the realm Riboviria.

Changes to virus taxonomy and the International Code of Virus Classification and Nomenclature ratified by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (2019)

The International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV) has approved, by an absolute majority, the creation of the realm Riboviria, a likely monophyletic group encompassing all viruses with positive-strand, negative- Strand and double-Strand genomic RNA that use cognate RNA-directed RNA polymerases for replication.

Cryptic and abundant marine viruses at the evolutionary origins of Earth’s RNA virome

Viruses of two candidate phyla are abundant in the ocean and revise the understanding of early RNA virus evolution, as well as identifying RNA viruses that necessitate substantive revisions of taxonomy and evolutionary understanding.

Overview of lethal human coronaviruses

Recent studies are summarized and reviewed, with a focus on virus–host interactions, vaccine-based and drug-targeted therapies, and the development of new approaches for clinical diagnosis and treatment of coronavirus infections of multiple origins.



Additional changes to taxonomy ratified in a special vote by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (October 2018)

The ICTV has approved, by an absolute majority, the creation of additional taxonomical ranks above those recognized previously, to encompass the entire spectrum of virus diversity.

Consensus statement: Virus taxonomy in the age of metagenomics

The rationale for why metagenomic sequence data should, and how it can, be incorporated into the ICTV taxonomy is considered, and present proposals that have been endorsed by the Executive Committee of the ITV.

Origins and Evolution of the Global RNA Virome

A detailed phylogenomic reconstruction of the evolution of the dramatically expanded global RNA virome reveals the relationships between different Baltimore classes of viruses and indicates extensive transfer of viruses between distantly related hosts, such as plants and animals.

Taxon Richness of “Megaviridae” Exceeds those of Bacteria and Archaea in the Ocean

This study compared the taxon richness and phylogenetic diversity of Megaviridae, Bacteria, and Archaea using DNA-dependent RNA polymerase as a common marker gene and obtained results showing that the evolutionary rate alone cannot account for the observed high diversity of MegaViridae lineages.

Patterns and ecological drivers of ocean viral communities

These investigations establish a global ocean dsDNA viromic data set with analyses supporting the seed-bank hypothesis to explain how oceanic viral communities maintain high local diversity.

A census-based estimate of Earth's bacterial and archaeal diversity

These estimates constrain the extent of a poorly quantified rare microbial biosphere and refute recent predictions that there exist trillions of prokaryotic OTUs.

Supplementary information accompanies this article: see

  • MBio 9,
  • 2018