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Acta Virol. 1988 Sep;32(5):469-78.

Antigenic classification and taxonomy of flaviviruses (family Flaviviridae) emphasizing a universal system for the taxonomy of viruses causing tick-borne encephalitis.

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Division of Vector-Borne Viral Diseases, Centers for Disease Control, Fort Collins, Colorado 80522-2087.


For many years the expression "tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) virus" has been used to denote viruses causing the clinical entity TBE. No virus with the name "TBE virus" has been registered in the International Catalogue of Arboviruses, the generally accepted reference for naming arthropod-borne viruses, and no formal agreement has been reached within the scientific community to use the expression "TBE virus"; this term is inaccurate for indicating the etiologic agent of the disease TBE and confuses students and others regarding virus ecology, transmission, and disease severity. This paper suggests alternative names for viruses of the antigenic complex of flaviviruses (family Flaviviridae) to which viruses causing TBE belong. A classification scheme and system of taxonomy for flaviviruses is also proposed. It is suggested that universal acceptance of the term Central European encephalitis virus would improve the dialogue between laboratory virologists and clinicians and improve the understanding of the epidemiology of the tick-borne flaviviruses.

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[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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