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J Gen Virol. 2014 Oct;95(Pt 10):2223-2232. doi: 10.1099/vir.0.068429-0. Epub 2014 Jul 2.

Consensus proposals for classification of the family Hepeviridae.

Author information

1
University of Edinburgh, Centre for Immunity, Infection and Evolution, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.
2
Wellcome Trust/DBT India Alliance, Hyderabad, India.
3
Special Volunteer, Retired Head Molecular Hepatitis Section, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, USA.
4
University College of London, London, UK.
5
College of Veterinary Medicine, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA, USA.
6
Division of Virology, Department of Infection and Immunity, Jichi Medical University School of Medicine, Tochigi-ken, Japan.
7
Central Veterinary Institute, Wageningen University and Research Centre, Lelystad, The Netherlands.
8
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention, Division of Viral Hepatitis, Atlanta, GA, USA.

Abstract

The family Hepeviridae consists of positive-stranded RNA viruses that infect a wide range of mammalian species, as well as chickens and trout. A subset of these viruses infects humans and can cause a self-limiting acute hepatitis that may become chronic in immunosuppressed individuals. Current published descriptions of the taxonomical divisions within the family Hepeviridae are contradictory in relation to the assignment of species and genotypes. Through analysis of existing sequence information, we propose a taxonomic scheme in which the family is divided into the genera Orthohepevirus (all mammalian and avian hepatitis E virus (HEV) isolates) and Piscihepevirus (cutthroat trout virus). Species within the genus Orthohepevirus are designated Orthohepevirus A (isolates from human, pig, wild boar, deer, mongoose, rabbit and camel), Orthohepevirus B (isolates from chicken), Orthohepevirus C (isolates from rat, greater bandicoot, Asian musk shrew, ferret and mink) and Orthohepevirus D (isolates from bat). Proposals are also made for the designation of genotypes within the human and rat HEVs. This hierarchical system is congruent with hepevirus phylogeny, and the three classification levels (genus, species and genotype) are consistent with, and reflect discontinuities in the ranges of pairwise distances between amino acid sequences. Adoption of this system would include the avoidance of host names in taxonomic identifiers and provide a logical framework for the assignment of novel variants.

PMID:
24989172
PMCID:
PMC4165930
DOI:
10.1099/vir.0.068429-0
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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