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PLoS Pathog. 2016 Sep 27;12(9):e1005883. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1005883. eCollection 2016 Sep.

A Bat-Derived Putative Cross-Family Recombinant Coronavirus with a Reovirus Gene.

Huang C1, Liu WJ1,2, Xu W3, Jin T4, Zhao Y1, Song J1, Shi Y5, Ji W1, Jia H1,2, Zhou Y3, Wen H6, Zhao H1, Liu H6, Li H3, Wang Q7, Wu Y5, Wang L5, Liu D5,8, Liu G4, Yu H9, Holmes EC10, Lu L3, Gao GF1,2,5,11,12,13.

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National Institute for Viral Disease Control and Prevention, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC), Beijing, China.
College of Laboratory Medicine and Life Sciences, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, China.
Yunnan Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Kunming Yunnan, China.
China National Genebank-Shenzhen, BGI-Shenzhen, Shenzhen, China.
CAS Key Laboratory of Pathogenic Microbiology and Immunology, Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China.
Center for Disease Control and Prevention of Mengla County, Mengla Yunnan, China.
CAS Key Laboratory of Microbial and Metabolic Engineering, Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China.
Network Information Center, Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China.
Division of Infectious Disease, Key Laboratory of Surveillance and Early-warning on Infectious Disease, Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, Beijing, China.
Marie Bashir Institute of Infectious Diseases and Biosecurity, Charles Perkins Centre, School of Biological Sciences and Sydney Medical School, The University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
Laboratory of Protein Engineering and Vaccines, Tianjin Institute of Industrial Biotechnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Tianjin, China.
Research Network of Immunity and Health (RNIH), Beijing Institutes of Life Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China.
Office of Director-General, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC), Beijing, China.


The emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) in 2002 and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012 has generated enormous interest in the biodiversity, genomics and cross-species transmission potential of coronaviruses, especially those from bats, the second most speciose order of mammals. Herein, we identified a novel coronavirus, provisionally designated Rousettus bat coronavirus GCCDC1 (Ro-BatCoV GCCDC1), in the rectal swab samples of Rousettus leschenaulti bats by using pan-coronavirus RT-PCR and next-generation sequencing. Although the virus is similar to Rousettus bat coronavirus HKU9 (Ro-BatCoV HKU9) in genome characteristics, it is sufficiently distinct to be classified as a new species according to the criteria defined by the International Committee of Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV). More striking was that Ro-BatCoV GCCDC1 contained a unique gene integrated into the 3'-end of the genome that has no homologs in any known coronavirus, but which sequence and phylogeny analyses indicated most likely originated from the p10 gene of a bat orthoreovirus. Subgenomic mRNA and cellular-level observations demonstrated that the p10 gene is functional and induces the formation of cell syncytia. Therefore, here we report a putative heterologous inter-family recombination event between a single-stranded, positive-sense RNA virus and a double-stranded segmented RNA virus, providing insights into the fundamental mechanisms of viral evolution.

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