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Des virus géants créateurs de leurs propres gènes ?

Abstract : Since 2003 and the discovery of Mimivirus, the saga of giant viruses continues with the isolation of new amoeba viruses, which are now divided into seven distinct families, the origin (s) of which are still mysterious and controversial. Thanks to the isolation of 3 new members of the Pandoraviridae family, whose micrometric particles and genomes of more than 2 megabases encroach on the cellular world, we carried out a stringent re-analysis of their gene contents, using a combination of transcriptomic, proteomic and bioinformatic approaches. We concluded that the only scenario capable of accounting for the distribution and the huge proportion of orphan genes (“ORFans”) that characterize Pandoraviruses is that they were created de novo within the intergenic regions. This process, perhaps shared among other large DNA viruses, challenges the central paradigm of molecular evolution according to which all genes / proteins have an ancestry history.
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Jean-Michel Claverie, Chantal Abergel, Matthieu Legendre. Des virus géants créateurs de leurs propres gènes ?. médecine/sciences, EDP Sciences, 2018, 34 (12), pp.1087-1091. ⟨10.1051/medsci/2018300⟩. ⟨hal-01997663⟩

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